“For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them"
Attaining a Church vision is a lifelong process.
Our vision is to:
Go to God in Prayer daily
Spend time daily studying the Bible
Teach People how to become disciples
Be a place to worship God
Support our Church with our prayers, presence, gifts and services
Be a place of spiritual fellowship
Lead many to become mature disciples of Christ
Pastor Sandi Dennis-Greenberg
Pastor Sandi grew up in Delphos, OH and attended the University of Northwestern Ohio College. After graduating, she moved to Illinois and worked as a caseworker for The Salvation Army. There she became involved in ministry first leading VBS, then teaching children’s Sunday School and eventually preaching.
The call to ministry that Pastor Sandi felt from an early age became clear and she applied to the seminary in Chicago. She was accepted with the understanding that she would serve a church as an assistant for up to 2 years before beginning seminary. Pastor Sandi was sent to serve a Salvation Army Church in Waterloo, IA as an assistant to a pastoral couple. She credits Major and Mrs. Thomas for teaching her so much about the ministry.
Pastor Sandi thoroughly enjoyed her time in seminary and Bible classes were her favorite by far. She also enjoyed Hebrew and Doctrine classes and later studied Hebrew with a reform rabbi to hone her skills. She is currently enrolled in a Course of Study at Methesco in Delaware, Ohio.
In November of 2017 Pastor Sandi began serving Windham UMC. Over that time, she has seen new faces, new decisions for Christ and wonderful spiritual growth and believes that is the biggest blessing a Pastor can have!
Pastor Sandi is married to Joel Greenberg and has one son, Phillip (Nebraska) and two step-sons; Lonnie (New Jersey) and Ethan (University Hts., Ohio). Their family is rounded out by kitties Mittens and Teddy and pups Bridget and Bailey.
Ministry is Pastor Sandi’s passion! There is nothing she enjoys more than seeing the Word of God come alive in the hearts and minds of God’s people and the changes that come about in their lives because of it!
Rev Rich Thewlis
Rev. Rich Thewlis was raised in rural Medina County and is a country boy at heart! He felt God’s call to ministry just one month out of high school in 1977, has been preaching almost every Sunday since June of 1981 and became an Ordained Elder in 1987.
After graduating from Baldwin-Wallace College, Rev. Rich began work at the Methodist Theological School in Delaware, Ohio. His main focus was Biblical Studies and Languages, both Hebrew and Greek. After seminary graduation in 1985, he moved to Iowa City, IA where he began a PH.D. program in Religion at the Univ of Iowa.
In Iowa, Rev. Rich served the United Church of Christ and although he knew nothing about that denomination, he loved the people of the farm community. Rev. Rich served the United Church of Christ until 1997 when he returned to the United Methodist Church in the East Ohio Conference, happily serving them since.
From 1999-2004, Rev. Rich taught at Baldwin-Wallace College after which he taught at Mallone College in Canton. He began teaching at Hiram College in 2010 where he still teaches part-time. While higher education is something that he cherishes and is honored to represent, his first calling is the Church of Jesus Christ.
Rev. Rich met his wife Jill, a licensed professional counselor for Coleman Professional Services, in college. They are blessed with two children, David and Sarah, and five grand-cats.
Rev. Rich sees his job as Pastor as being called and trained to shepherd and disciple people but most of all to help individual congregations be the part of the Body of Christ that God needs them to be.
2023 marks the 209th anniversary of Nelson United Methodist Church making it the oldest continuously operating church in northeast Ohio. The church was first organized in 1814 in the home of Isaac Mills who was the brother of one of the original settlers of Nelson Township. Originally, the church was called the Methodist Episcopal Church and was part of the New Connecticut Circuit.
In 1832, after 18 years of worship in the Mill’s home, the congregation obtained land and made a commitment to build their own church for the convenience of people to attend meetings. The contract for construction was signed on April 27, 1833, and allowed until September 1, 1833, for completion. The contractor received $250 for his work, not including materials. Quite the bargain! Everything was to be done in “a good workmanlike manner.”
We still hold worship service in this same building today. Of course, there have been quite a few changes over the years.
In 1913, a basement was added to serve as a fellowship hall, new pews were obtained in 1920 and electricity was installed in 1925. Indoor bathrooms were finally added in 1966 and we got hot water for the first time in 1989! We also built our first parsonage in 1989 and until that time, the pastor lived with a church member or rented a small room in town. In 2012 the basement fellowship hall was remodeled and most recently, in 2019, a front porch and awning were added to protect the iconic red front doors.