The Church of the Disciples of Christ at Mantua...
was formed at the schoolhouse in the south part of Mantua, January 27, 1827, on the principle of faith in Jesus Christ, the divine inspiration of the Holy Scriptures, and the New Testament as the rule of conduct and the book of discipline.
Thus reads the first entry in the original church record book, followed by the names of the nine charter members who separated from a local Baptist congregation to join the growing Restoration Movement of Thomas and Alexander Campbell. Mantua Center Christian Church is the oldest Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) congregation in Ohio, and the fourth oldest in the entire denomination. The present church building was erected in 1840, and has been in continuous use since (with additions in 1952 and 1993). The church looks today much as it did 165 years ago, inside and out, the plain look purposely maintained, simple and unadorned, consistent with the sensibilities of our pioneer founders.
In addition to playing an instrumental role in the founding of the Western Reserve Eclectic Institute in 1850 - now known as Hiram College - Mantua Center served as an incubator for four other local Disciple congregations that formed in the 1800’s
(Hiram, Aurora, Shalersville, and Mantua Station).
A gifted young Hiram College student, circuit rider preacher, and later professor, James A. Garfield, preached on several occasions at Mantua Center in the 1850’s. Many other ministers affiliated with Hiram College have filled the pulpit over the years.
In 1923, the congregation voted to open her doors to members of any other denomination without making baptism a test of fellowship, thereby making MCCC a community church devoted to the unity of all Christians. To this day, we still celebrate the principles on which we were founded: “No creed but Christ, no book but the Bible.”