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Our Ministries

First Congregational Church is a mission-driven church. We seek to be good neighbors to those especially who struggle with food insecurity and homelessness. We have undertaken many projects as the needs of the community evolve, and always come back to Service as a core value.

Youth Programs

Save our Children

Save Our Children started 40+ years ago out of the youth ministries program at Asbury United Methodist Church, the oldest African American Church in the city of Elyria.  There have been multiple generations of families and children who have come through our humble doors.  SOC received its 501C3 designation in 1996 and has continued to serve children of all ages from kindergarten through high school graduation.  We currently run an after-school and summer programs for students in grades K-12.  We have a rich history that includes some amazing men and women who have made great contributions to our community over the years.

Pastor Patrick and youth members making pretzels on Pretzel Sunday

The First Congregational United Church of Christ Preschool in Elyria, a not-for-profit organization, was established in 1950 by a group of parents who were interested in developing a preschool program for three and four year old children.

Elyria Teens Achieve Success

Save Our Children collaborated with Nordson Corporation, the Elyria City Schools, Effective Leadership Academy, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Boys & Girls Club and the YWCA to form Elyria Teens Achieve Success (ETAS): a mentoring program for 9th - 12th grade students to assist them in transitioning into high school and preparing them for 21st Century careers. The program cultivates leadership by allowing students an opportunity to encourage their peers to excel and succeed in academics and in life. 

Community Support

Food Pantry

First Church is a Partner Charity Distribution site of Second Harvest Food Bank of North Central Ohio.

Food Pantry hours are:

Monday | 12:00-2:00pm

Tuesdays & Wednesdays | 9:30-11:30am

Attendees are asked to please bring a picture ID along with proof of residency in Lorain County (i.e. a utility bill with your name on it).

Pastor Patrick and youth on Souper Bowl of Caring Sunday


Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of people who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism.

Women's Sobriety Group:

Thursdays | 7:00-8:00pm

Our Church's Wider Mission

Our Church’s Wider Mission is the name we use to describe the work we do as the United Church of Christ beyond the local church – through our Conferences, national ministries, and UCC-related institutions. Our Church’s Wider Mission is also the name we give to the financial support given by UCC members and congregations that makes this broader mission possible.

In the United Church of Christ, we affirm that, although the congregation is the fundamental unit of mission, mission is not just local. We are connected to one another, across boundaries of neighborhood, class, race, and national border.

Pastoral Support

For Church members and attendees experiencing illness, hospitalization, or another life event for which you or someone you love may need a visit, Pastor Patrick available for hospital visits and pastoral calls when the need arises.

Please call the church office during business hours to leave a message for Pastor Patrick, or to receive his direct contact information. 

Pastor Patrick and his dog, Bentley
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