What should you know about us? Well, Church of Our Saviour is not just a regular congregation in Akron’s West Hill neighborhood; we are a hodgepodge of people boldly living into our mission to love and serve God. In fact, some of us are converts, some are part of the LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer) community, some are seekers, and some are friends who value our tradition for its inclusiveness, liturgy, and focus on outreach. We even have some “lifers” who have been worshiping here for generations! No matter our individual backgrounds or identities, we honor the beauty in the diversity of our shared community, both at worship on Sunday mornings and throughout the week when our community gathers for meals, grocery distribution, and other meetings and events.
Another thing you should know is there is always someone doing something around here! We are known for our vigorous lay leadership, meaning that our priest helps to guide us in finding ways to use our gifts and talents, both in and outside of the parish, and we have the opportunity to take the lead! Our vestry, lay preachers, educators, volunteer coordinators, and even our chef use their talents to make possible our many fellowship and outreach activities within our neighborhood. We believe that we all have a role to play here at Church of Our Saviour!
The last thing you should know about us is that we seek to have deep, long-lasting relationships with our neighbors and our neighborhood. We are most certainly not a Sunday-only community. We don’t just want to provide things to our neighbors; we want to work together to create a neighborhood that we all can enjoy and be proud of. We’ve done a lot together so far, and we will continue moving forward by finding even more ways to collaborate in the future. To learn more, visit the Community section of our website.
In summary, at Church of Our Saviour, we want every child of God to have a safe and inclusive place to worship, learn, and grow. At Church of Our Saviour, everyone is welcome to join us at the table on Sunday mornings and at all of the other times we gather as a community.
Learn more about how we worship God together.
The Rev. Debra Bennett is the rector of Church of Our Saviour. Learn more about Mother Debra.
We are part of:
The Episcopal Diocese of Ohio, which comprises 95 parishes with a total of nearly 19,000 members in the 48 counties of northern Ohio.
The Episcopal Church, which welcomes all who worship Jesus Christ in 109 dioceses and three regional areas in 16 nations.
The Anglican Communion, the third largest Christian communion in the world, with approximately 70 to 80 million members.
Church of Our Saviour began in 1892 when a group of Episcopal women who lived in West Hill wanted a church near their homes. They appealed to Bishop Leonard of Ohio, who sent his archdeacon to organize a mission. In April 1895, that mission, which had been self-supporting from its beginning, became Church of Our Saviour.
Bishop Leonard laid the cornerstone of our building on June 13, 1895, and the first service was held on All Saints Day (November 1) 1896. The Parish Hall, endowed by Mrs. Richard P. Marvin, was completed in 1913.
Our history is intertwined with the history of Akron, and our focus on outreach today has been made possible by the generosity of the business leaders who endowed the parish in its early days. We have been a home for Alcoholics Anonymous and other 12-Step groups since the earliest days of that program. Dr. Bob, the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, sent his children to our Sunday School in the 1930s.
Congregations in the Episcopal Church are governed by a vestry, a group of laypeople elected by the congregation according to our bylaws.