Glade Reformed-Walkersville

Glade Reformed Church-Walkersville, Maryland


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A Brief History of Glade United Church of Christ

Written by Josephine Cramer Gilbert

Edited by Jay H. Zimmerman

Around 1748, the Rev. Michael Schlatter from the Holland Synod was sent to the Monocacy area to organize churches for the German Reformed settlers. Rev. Schlatter wrote that “a new Reformed congregation was formed in 1750,” and referred to it as “the Church in the Glades.” This became Glade Church.

From 1750 until 1833, Glade Church was part of the Frederick Charge which included most of the German Reformed churches. The ten pastors, including Rev. Schlatter, serving this charge were: Theodore Frankenfield (formally installed by Schlatter 1753-1756); John C. Steiner (1756-1759); Philip W. Otterbein (1760-1765); Charles Lange (1766-1768); Frederick L. Henop (1770-1784); John William Runkle (1784-1801); John D. Wagner (1802-1810); John Helffenstein (1811-1828); John H. Smaltz (1829-1833).

Soon after the formation of the congregation, a log church was built on Glade Road about one and a half miles from Walkersville. At about the same time, a log schoolhouse was built across the road. It remained in operation until after the Civil War. Land adjacent to the log church was used as a “graveyard,” a well maintained cemetery to this day.

As part of the Frederick Charge, many developments took place at Glade:

In 1781, Glade Church was granted by the Maryland General Assembly about five acres of land from the Daniel Dulaney estate, Monocacy Manor; this was being farmed by the John Cramer family who had allegedly received the land from Lord Baltimore to settle.

Following new and repaired log churches, a brick structure was built in 1781.

John Winebrenner, born in Walkersville and baptized and reared in Glade Church, was mentored by and guided into the ministry by the Rev. John Helffenstein (pastor from 1811-1828). The Rev. Winebrenner went on to serve German Reformed churches in the Harrisburg, PA area. He embraced the ideas and worship style of the evangelistic fervor of the day and went on to form the Church of God in the U.S.A. Glade Church still maintains The Winebrenner Fund, a bequest from Arie Winebrenner given in 1942 for “foreign missions.”

In 1823, Americanization of the German churches, including Glade, resulted in English, instead of German, being used in services.

Glade Charge is Formed

In 1833, the Reformed congregations at Glade, Woodsboro, and Creagerstown became Glade Charge. The make-up of the Charged changed several times until 1890. Developments indicative of a growing church were instituted by these pastors: John W. Hoffmeier (1833-1837), Andrew P. Freese (1837-1840); William F. Colliflower (1840-1849); Mortimer L. Shuford (1849-1857); Jesse Steiner (1858-1867); Abner R. Kremer (1868-1873); Orange Elihu Lake (1874-1879); and Silas M. Hench (1879-1892).

In 1833, confirmation instruction with the Heildleberg Catechism was introduced.

A new parsonage was built across from the church.

A new constitution was written in 1848, which stated that “the name of the church be Glade Church.”

Christmas trees were used for the first time for Sunday School “festivals” in 1875.

The Envelope System was introduced.

The Charge was re-aligned to include only Glade and St. John’s, Woodsboro.

Glade Church Moves to Town

The Rev. Atville Conner (1892-1898) oversaw Glade Church’s move from the country to the town of Walkersville in “the Mt. Pleasant District” on one acre of land purchased from John H. Stauffer. The new church was built and dedicated in 1896. An injunction against tearing down the “good” church at the cemetery was granted.

Pastors serving Glade Church from 1898 until the present are: David J. Wolf (1898-1904); J. J. Schaeffer (1904-1908); Ernest E. Weaver (1914-1917); W.R. Hartzell (1918-1928); Frank A. Roseberger (1929-1933); Nelson C. Brown (1933-1939); Edgar F. Hoffmeier (1940-1949); Charles A. Price (1950-1958); Frank A. Rosenberger (1958-1962); Paul and Barbara Mehl (1976-1987); Robert Rock (1989-1994); Gerald Hanberry (1995-2008).

Quite a few developments occurred during these 104 years. In 1899, following the removal of the injunction, the old church was torn down and materials from it were used to build a new parsonage next to the church.

In 1915, a new organ was installed and later electrified. Electric lights were used for the first time in 1916.

In 1917, Mrs. Mary Cramer Myers became the organist. She served for 40 years until her retirement in 1957.

In 1931, the interior of the sanctuary was completely renovated and a biblical picture of “Christ in Gethsemane” was painted on the rear wall in the pulpit recess.

In 1935, a church school addition containing a full kitchen and stage was erected.

In the early 1950’s the basement was excavated for building more Sunday School rooms for the children’s department.

In 1957, Glade Church became part of the United Church of Christ, and changed its name to Glade United Church of Christ.

Again during the period 1958-1962, the parsonage was renovated as well as the sanctuary which gained a new Moller organ, pews, carpet, and a new color scheme.

A new parsonage was purchased in Spring Gardens Estates in 1967. The same year an educational building was erected following the razing of the old parsonage. Bricks from this were used to form a wall in the new building (Fireside Room), thereby establishing a continuity in the church history.

In 1983, Glade Charge was dissolved, and St. John’s and Glade became single churches.

The narthex was changed.

Complete renovations of the sanctuary, social hall, and part of the Educational Wing, making the facilities handicapped-accessible and unifying the worship space, was completed in 1997.

In 1998, an alternative worship service, Sunday Night Alive, was added to the worship life of Glade Church.

In 2000, as Glade Church entered and embraced the 21st century, the people of Glade Church celebrated 250 years as a congregation.

Pastors of Glade Church:

Under Frederick Charge

Rev. Michael Schlatter 1750-1753

Theodore Frankenfield 1753-1756

John C. Steiner 1756-1759

Philip W. Otterbein 1760-1765

Charles Lange 1766-1768

Frederick L. Henop 1770-1784

John W. Runkle 1784-1801

John D. Wagner 1802-1810

John Helffenstein 1811-1828

John H. Smaltz 1829-1833

Under Glade Charge

John W. Hoffmeier 1833-1837

Andrew P. Freese 1837-1840

William F. Colliflower 1840-1849

Mortimer L. Shuford 1849-1857

Jesse Steiner 1858-1867

Abner R. Kremer 1867-1868

Orange Elihu Lake 1874-1879

Silas M. Hench 1879-1892

Atville Conner 1892-1898

David J. Wolf 1898-1904

J.J. Schaeffer 1904-1908

Ernest E. Weaver 1914-1917

W.R. Hartzell 1918-1928

Frank A. Rosenberger 1929-1933

Nelson C. Brown 1933-1939

Edgar F. Hoffmeirer 1940-1949

Charles A. Price 1950-1958

Frank A. Rosenberger 1958-1962

Dale M. Shellhamer 1963-1967

Fred A. Trimble 1967-1975

Paul and Barbara Mehl 1976-1983

Glade UCC as a Single Congregation

Paul and Barbara Mehl 1983-1987

Jergen Hilke 1987-1988

Robert Rock 1989-1994

Elsabeth Hilke 1994-1995

Gerald C. Hanberry 1995-2008

Eugene P. Bartell 2008-2009

Terry Foor 2009-Present