Our History The official founding date of Mt. Washington Baptist Church was May 17, 1953, although by then, much work and planning had gone into the establishment of the church. In 1953, the call was extended to Dr. Harold R. Ely to serve as pastor organizing the new church, and the 123 charter members were determined. Members at the inaugural Annual Business Meeting adopted the first church constitution and organized the church’s boards and committees in 1954. The present site on 2021 Sutton Avenue was purchased in 1962. In 1963, Dr. Harold Ely retired, and Dr. Paul Warford became the new pastor. Groundbreaking ceremonies for phase one (the two-story section including fellowship hall and the adjacent ground-level education wing) of the church’s new facilities took place in 1965. In 1966, the church moved into its newly finished building. Dr. Warford resigned in 1971. Dr. Michael Brandy was called to be the new pastor, and his first official worship service was held on April 1, 1972. Dr. Brandy led the church for the next twenty-one years until his retirement in 1993. The Mt. Washington Baptist Nursery School (later renamed the Preschool) began operations in 1972, and is still in existence today. Ground was broken for phase two (the sanctuary and other facilities) of the building process in 1975, with dedication services being held on September 12, 1976. In 1977, a land utilization committee was formed to determine the use of the vacant land at the rear of the church property. The vision was generated to develop a retirement community to meet the needs of the growing elderly population of Mt. Washington and surrounding areas. Through much hard work, the Sutton Grove Retirement Community became a reality, opening its 75 units in 1989. The Mt. Washington Baptist Day Care opened in September 1979. It is still in existence today. In 1992, Rev. Chris Barnett was called as Associate Pastor, to meet the congregation’s growing needs. Upon Dr. Brandy’s retirement in 1993, Rev. Barnett was installed as the fourth pastor of the church. His ministry as pastor began August 22, 1993. Shortly thereafter, Rev. Barnett was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, and resigned in 1996 due to health concerns. Dr. James Menninger accepted the call to serve as interim minister in 1996, and was later called in 1997 as the full-time Senior Pastor. The Sutton Grove Retirement Community was sold to a private company in 1996. In 1997, the church held a mortgage burning ceremony to celebrate the church’s new “debt-free” status. Also that year, the church’s first van was purchased to provide transportation to youth events, Sunday School outings, and to help members and guests to attend worship services and other activities. On June 7, 1998 an ordination ceremony was held for Dr. Menninger. Under Dr. Menninger’s leadership, in 1999 the church began offering a second Sunday worship service more contemporary in style. The “traditional” service was moved to 9:00 a.m. and the “contemporary” service was added at 11:15 a.m., with Sunday School in between at 10:15 a.m. This arrangement still exists today. As a new century dawned, the church entered a time of staff transition. Rev. Harold Chilton and Dr. John Gilmore both served short terms as Associate Ministers due to family and/or health reasons. In 2001, Jane DeVore accepted a part-time position as Minister of Pastoral Care. In 2001, Carrie Owings was hired as Youth Director for the Middle School and High School ministries. In July 2002, Dr. Menninger announced his resignation. During the interim period without a full-time pastor, Dr. C. Richard Swanson and Dr. Bill Hamren served as interim ministers. In July 2003, Dr. Rob Schlatter was called as Senior Pastor. In September of 2006, the position of Youth Director was discontinued and a new position, Associate Pastor of Student Ministries, was created to address the needs of children and youth in our church and community. Who We Are Community The Mt. Washington Baptist Church ministers primarily to the communities of Mt. Washington and Anderson Township. Mt. Washington is a stable residential Cincinnati neighborhood located on the east side of the city. Along with its quaint downtown shops, city park, pool and recreational center, the residents of Mt. Washington are fortunate to have one of the best elementary schools in the Cincinnati Public School System (Mt. Washington Elementary), a much sought-after Montessori elementary school (Sands Montessori), and a well-respected Catholic High School (McNicholas High School). The current residential population is around 12,200. Demographically, Mt. Washington is comprised of the following: The two largest age segments are “under 19 years old” and “25-64”. Of the 9,200 households the income levels are: 47% above $50,000; 16% between $35,000-$49,999; 12% between $25,000-$34,999; 20% between $10,000-$24,999; 5% below $10,000 Median household income is $46,647. 72% of occupations of residents are labeled as “white collar”. 38% have a college degree or higher (largest demographic) 93% of the population is white, with the remaining racial composition primarily involving African-American and Hispanic. Adjacent to Mt. Washington is Anderson Township – a much larger and more affluent suburban community. Anderson Township has been named as one of Cincinnati’s most livable neighborhoods. In addition, its Forest Hills School District has been rated one of the best public school systems in the state of Ohio. With a population around 43,000, it is comprised of the following demographics: The two largest age segments are “35-54” and “under 18” 69% of occupations of residents are labeled as “white collar”. 38% have a college degree or higher (largest demographic). Income levels: 11% make $150,000 or greater, 13% between $100,000-$149,000, 16% between $75,000-$99,999, 20% between $50,000-$74,999, 14% make $35,000-$49,999, 10% between $25,000-$34,999, 8% between $15,000-$24,999, 8% make under $14,999. Anderson Township is 97% white/Caucasian. The racial make-up of our congregation tends to reflect the demographics of both communities. Staff Rev. Dr. Rob Schlatter Senior Pastor Jim Cagle Choir Director and 9:00 a.m. Worship Leader J.C. Young 11:15 a.m. Worship Leader/Band Director Dianna Dyer Organist Martha Cass Church Secretary Jeannie Slone Office Manager Holly McIntosh Day Care Director Tammy Caldwell Preschool Director Terry Jones Maintenance Pam Leiman Janitorial Sunday Worship Our congregation offers two worship services on Sunday mornings. Our 9:00 a.m. service has a more American-European traditional style of worship to God. This worship service utilizes more traditional hymns, a choir, a piano and organ, reciting the Lord’s Prayer, a children’s message, and other various elements. Attendance at this service varies from 90-120. Our 11:15 a.m. service utilizes a more informal style of worship. Modern worship songs along with newly arranged music for traditional hymns are played by a full band consisting of electric guitars, drums, keyboard, and other instruments. Various mini-movies and other media are often used to express our worship to God. The worship in this service also uses a children’s message, along with other forms of worship. Attendance at this service varies from 60-85. Denominational Affiliation and Involvement Mt. Washington Baptist Church is a member church of the American Baptist Churches of the USA . We are also actively involved at the regional level with the American Baptist Churches of Ohio, and on the associational level, with the Miami Baptist Association (consisting of American Baptist Churches in the Cincinnati and surrounding areas). Our congregation offers financial support to both our denomination’s mission efforts and other American Baptist ministries. In addition, various individuals participate in Miami Baptist Association meetings/dinners, regional meetings training events, and camping and conference programs (especially Camp Kirkwood in Wilmington, OH). Financial Information Our 2007 church budget is projected to be around $400,000. The church has no outstanding debt and owns all of its property and facilities. The church’s Day Care and Preschool, although separate entities from one another, have a combined budget around $550,000. The church also has a well-endowed scholarship fund that provides financial assistance to students attending post-high school educational institutions. Location and Facilities The church property and facilities are located in the heart of Mt. Washington on the well- traveled thoroughfare of Sutton Avenue. The main church building consists of two sections. The section built first (1966) is a three-story building with ground level access to all levels. The upper level houses the Fellowship Hall, with stage area, and an adjacent kitchen area. The ground level houses the educational wing, including the nursery. The lower level houses the weekday Preschool and some Sunday School rooms. The second section, dedicated in 1976, contains the sanctuary and library at ground level. The lower level area houses some Sunday School classes, the weekday Day Care facility, and the choir room. The entire facility is air-conditioned. The sanctuary and fellowship hall both have audio and video equipment. The sanctuary was remodeled in December of 2006, which included the following renovations: new chair seating, new lighting, new carpet, and a new stage/pulpit area. All three levels of our facility are wheel chair accessible from outside entrances. A new chair lift is being installed on the interior to connect the fellowship hall to the other part of our building. The church currently owns one house on the south side of the facility. The house at 2005 Sutton Avenue is used for offices and meetings. Currently, the youth center for the Middle School and Senior High is in the basement of this house. Children’s Ministry The following list includes various activities and ministries that the children of MWBC participate in or have been involved with in the recent past: Sunday School – We offer classes for all ages. Children’s Church – Children are encouraged to worship with their families each week. As an added ministry, midway through worship children ages 4-3rd grade are welcome to leave the worship service and gather with a teacher(s) for a 20-25 minute activity (this takes place during the sermon). Children remain in worship once per month on communion Sunday. Pioneer Clubs – The program is offered on Wednesday nights at 7:00 p.m. Kids K-6th grade are divided up into age groups where they are involved in various learning activities to teach them how Jesus is involved in every area of life. Vacation Bible School – Each year we host a community VBS that draws around 125-140 kids from the church and surrounding areas. Nursery – We offer nursery ministry to parents during our Sunday morning programs and on Wednesday nights. Community Easter Egg Hunt – For the past number of years we have hosted this activity as an outreach event for the church. We tend to reach over 100 children (along with their families). Christmas Program – Each year the children of the church perform a Christmas play/musical for the congregation. Children’s Sunday – We traditionally have set aside one Sunday in June to recognize the children of the church. It typically has been the Sunday following Vacation Bible School. The children will lead most of the worship service. Youth Ministry The youth ministry of Mt. Washington Baptist Church encompasses approximately 20 students in the age group of seventh grade through twelfth grade. Below is a listing of some of the various ministries and activities this age group has been or is involved with: Sunday School – Currently both middle school and high school students meet together for a 45-50 minute class each Sunday. Youth Group Meeting – Up until recently, the youth have met on another night of the week for another gathering to learn about Jesus and applying Him to their lives. This has been temporarily discontinued since the Youth Director position was phased out. Service and Mission Projects – The youth have taken mission trips to London, Mexico, and Belize. Locally, the youth have done service projects with a variety of mission groups. 5th Quarter Coffee House – Up until about two years ago, as an outreach activity, the youth would host a coffee house and Christian band night in our fellowship hall once per month. C.I.Y. (Christ in Youth) – Each year a group attends the local regional gathering of this youth event. Icthus (Outdoor music festival) – Each year a group from our church attends this weekend-long music festival and teaching event. School Bible Studies – Our previous Youth Director started various bible study groups that meet in local high schools. These are teen-led groups. Some of our students at MWBC attend these groups. Fun Outings – Typically the youth gather monthly for various get-togethers to bond and have fun.
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