Celebrating Our Third Century!
The Mt. Healthy United Methodist Church (UMC) is a merger of two churches both with very long histories and traditions: Epworth United Methodist Church and Heritage United Methodist Church.
Both churches were founded in the early 19th century in the small village of Mt. Healthy, Ohio (then known as Mt. Pleasant). Epworth UMC was originally known as Mt. Healthy Methodist Church, and Heritage UMC was originally known as Mt. Healthy Evangelical United Bretheren (EUB). In 1968 the Methodist Church and the Evangelical United Bretheren Church voted to unite to become the United Methodist Church. It was at this time the two churches took on the names of Epworth UMC and Heritage UMC.
The two churches voted to merge as one church with Epworth UMC being known as the North Building and Heritage UMC being known as the South Building.
Shortly before Christmas 2007, the church voted to sell the South Building and purchase Mary Steiner's house on Compton Road, in order to own the property at the corner of Compton and Perry, as well as the 2 houses next to it (the cottage and Mary Steiner's house). The South Building (1585 Compton Road) is currently owned by Emmanuel Temple Baptist Church.
In the year 1849, two families who were members of the German Methodist Church in Cincinnati, came to live in Mt. Pleasant (now Mt. Healthy), Ohio. They began to hold prayer meetings in their homes, and were diligent in the work of the Lord according to German Methodist Procedure. Others soon joined them.
Soon these meetings became too large to be held in private homes, so they were held in the church of the United Brethren (which was the site of the present Hoffner Cemetery). During these early years, the congregation was first affiliated with the Second Church of Cincinnati, and later with the church in Hamilton, and then with Spring Grove Avenue Church.
In 1850 the first church building, was a modest frame measuring 33 x 27 feet, was erected on the same lot occupied by the present church.
By 1891, the small building became quite crowded, and a second sanctuary was built. This building still stands, having been remodeled into a dwelling at the southeast corner of Compton and Elizabeth Streets. The church bell cost $375 and in 1936, the church acquired the pipe organ that had been in the Everett Street Church. Parts of this organ are in the present day organ that has been modernized.
In the years 1909-1910, the transition from a German-speaking church to an English speaking Methodist church came about.
As the congregation grew it was necessary to begin planning for a larger facility. In 1949 the congregation began to proceed with a new sanctuary. Much planning, praying and working together developed the present day sanctuary in just 6 1/2 years. This church was consecrated on December 18, 1955 with the first worship service in this new present sanctuary.
Once the sanctuary was paid for, the congregation realized a new educational wing was needed. The new Educational Wing was dedicated on May 21, 1972. A new parsonage was purchased in 1967 and both the education building and the parsonage were paid for in 1972.
In 1968 the Methodist Church merged with the Evangelical United Brethren Church to form the United Methodist Church.
The Cottage, a house immediately behind the North Building on Compton Road, was purchased from Mr. & Mrs. Harold Steiner in 1995. This building is now being rented.
On January 1, 1833 a meeting was held for the formal organization of a group to be known as the United Brethren in Christ of Mt. Pleasant (Mt. Healthy). Prior to this, the group had been meeting in the Mt. Pleasant Union Meeting House. As a result, our first church building was erected. It was a small box church on the United Brethren (Hoffner) cemetery lot on south Perry Street.
The congregation grew and on June 1, 1850 it was decided a new church should be built. This was built on the space now occupied by our education building. At that time we were the United Brethren in Christ at Mt. Healthy. The minister at that time was Hannah Yingling. Women preachers were rare in those days but it was the practice of the United Brethren to allow women to preach.
On April 1, 1915 the church was named the Hoffner Memorial United Brethren Church to honor the man who had done so much to promote the growth of the church in the early days. On April II, 1915 a successful "rally" was held to raise funds for a new parsonage. The church purchased the land on the southwest corner of Compton and Perry Streets. They used the land from the second church on Perry Street. The church today stands on the land where the original parsonage stood.
The centennial of the church was held in 1933. It was a week long celebration by the 179 members. During the centennial year it was decided to build a new parsonage and the result was the home that now stands behind the present church.
During 1946 there was a merger of the Evangelical Church and the United Brethren in Christ Church. This caused our name to be changed to the Mt. Healthy Evangelical United Brethren Church.
By 1950 the membership had reached approximately 500 members. Farms around Mt. Healthy were turning into subdivisions and there was an influx of people. It was decided to build a new church. The original parsonage was torn down. The present church was built and the cornerstone was laid on October 6,1957. The old church standing along side the new one was used for Sunday School classes. With the increase in new families it became evident that a new educational unit was needed so the old church building was torn down and a new educational building was added.
During April of 1968 the Methodist Church and the Evangelical United Brethren Church merged to form the present United Methodist Church. Since there were now two United Methodist Churches in Mt. Healthy it became necessary to again make a name change. The name of Heritage United Methodist Church was chosen. Since the doctrine of the two churches was very similar, it was a natural union. In 1983, the 150th birthday of the church, a year long celebration was held. In 1993, a 160th celebration was observed.