During the cold, snow-covered days of January 1963, there was seen a well-bundled man trudging door-to-door. This was for many their first introduction to Pastor Bruce Anderson, the Mission Developer, who was making survey calls throughout southern Centerville-Washington Township. He held a series of small gatherings in his home. From these came the first Steering committee – Pastor Anderson, Kendall Clay, and William Kolb, who later became part of the first church council.
Christ the King (CTK) began with an interest meeting held on March 31, with 65 people attending. Our first worship service was held at Centerville High School (now Cline Elementary) on April 21, 1963, with 105 people in attendance. A Sunday School program began on May 5, 1963. Our next step toward organization was on September 15, 1963, when potential members began signing (petitioning) to the LCA to be an organized church. This charter signed by original members is currently on display in the hallway leading from the Narthex to the Conference Room in our church building.
The “Official” birthday of CTK is November 10, 1963 when Synod President Dr. Herbert Veler conducted an Organization Service. Bruce Anderson was called as Pastor, a constitution was adopted, and a church council was elected.
The high school was our church home for 4 ½ years. Our altar was a gift from Westwood Lutheran Church in Dayton. Each Sunday during those years we moved everything needed to conduct Sunday services into and out of the school. In March 1964, the decision was made to build. In the fall of 1966 we acquired a pipe organ from Trinity Lutheran Church in Springfield, OH. Groundbreaking was held in January of 1967, on ground almost too hard to break.
In June of 1965 Raymond P. Serocka was called as our pastor. Duane G. Culler was called as our third pastor in September 1966. He laid the cornerstone on June 8th and conducted the first worship serviced in our completed building on September 3, 1967. Synod President, Dr. John W. Rilling conducted the Service of Dedication on November 12th. Assisting in that service were the three pastors who began and nourished our young congregation.
Pastor Ronald R. Siebert was called by Christ the King in May of 1974. Shortly after his arrival, a contemporary worship service was added. The congregation continued to grow. By 1980 there were 322 confirmed members. We were crowded in every area, from a crowded sanctuary to a shortage of classrooms and office space. A building committee was formed. Plans began for an addition, which included a new sanctuary, additional classrooms, an office, and an enlarged kitchen. Groundbreaking was held on May 23, 1982, and the cornerstone was laid September 26th. Bishop Sauer of the Ohio Synod conducted the Dedication Service on November 14th.
In 1992 our confirmed membership peaked at 464 members. Responding to the additional need for classroom space, another building committee was formed in 1993. An educational wing was planned and dedicated in 1994.
Pastor James Zingale was called in March of 1997. During his tenure we finished the lower level creating additional fellowship space, a staple pantry, storage space for committee use, and a computer room to be used by the youth for educational purposes. A Preschool and Mothers’ Morning Out were established.
In January 2001 Pastor Thomas Rutherford became our 6th Pastor. A new healing ministry and a ministry of hospital visitors were established. Small groups were formed to meet for service, fellowship, and Bible study. A Thursday morning Men’s Group was started for fellowship and a speaker or tour to places of specific interest to the group. Our individual spiritual gifts were explored, and the congregation was encouraged to use them for the glory of God. Pastor Rutherford participated and encouraged other members of CTK to join him in several mission trips to Sidell, LA.
Our current Pastor, Dona Johnson, was called to CTK on November 3, 2008. OneHeart Prayer ministry, an encouragement ministry; a bi-monthly ministry to prepare lunch at the Castle (a center for the mentally ill); a Congregational Care Team to minister to shut-ins and those who are ill and a Men’s Prayer Breakfast have been started. Nine CTK members including the Pastor went on the Navajo Mission trip to the Navajo Lutheran Mission in Rock Point, AZ. A new Mission Statement “Serving Jesus and Transforming Lives through Faith,” a ten year vision and a ten year strategic plan to implement the vision have been adopted.
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