The Ohio Council of Churches (OCC) is a partnership of 18 Christian faith denominations throughout the state.
Established in 1919, Ohio is one of the oldest of the state ecumenical councils. Its eighteen denominations encompass some 4,500 congregations and more than 2,000,000 members. The Council co-sponsors various events and activities with other organizations.
The Board is comprised of each bishop and executives leader of the 25 judicatories (governing bodies.) The Board meets twice a year.
The Foundation, Board of Trustees is entrusted with fiduciary responsibilities of endowment and investment. It is comprised of representatives from the various 25 judicatories of the Council. The Rev. Deb Oskin is Chair.
We are an Ohio expression of the worldwide ecumenical movement. Ecumenism is the quest for unity and the collaborative effort of the churches to be one in their witness and service to the world. Our mandate is to respond to Jesus' prayer: "that they may all be one...so that the world may believe." (John 17:21)
May 2, 2018, November 2, 2018
WITNESSING TO OUR FAITH
The Ohio Council of Churches has voice and presence at the Ohio General Assembly through the office of Public Policy. A network of individuals and organizations committed to social justice and public policy issues, connects concerned Ohioans. A monthly Legislative Brief informs constituents of current legislations and concerns.
Orthodox, Protestant, historic
African American, and Peace
churches come together learning
about church agreements and
their impact, about one another’s
polity and traditions, and dialogue
with each other on current/critical issues. The ecumenical
table expands with four Related
Organizations and two Affiliate
Bodies. Christian unity and common
mission give direction as we
“try to understand others
as we hope to be understood.”
NETWORKING & PARTNERING
We network with ecumenical and secular constituencies around the state and offer support. We seek to create opportunities for common work and ministry and reach out to secular structures in order to promote the well-being of all people. One of the current emphases is environment, partnering with the Ohio Interfaith Power & Light organization (OhIPL). Others are civil discourse, peace efforts, immigration reform, health care, education, disaster response, the death penalty, and interfaith dialogue.
Bishop Marvin Frank Thomas, Sr. was elected the 62nd bishop of the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church on July 1, 2014 at the 37th Quadrennial Session & 38th General Conference in Baltimore, Maryland.
Rector, St. James Episcopal Church (2009- present) and Ecumenical Officer, Episcopal Church, Diocese of Ohio (2016.)
Deb is ordained to Peace Ministry in the Church of the Brethren (one of the historic peace churches), and has worked on an interfaith basis to promote nonviolent methods of peacemaking since 2003.
Pastor Tim has been serving Zoar Lutheran Church in Perrysburg since 1985. He and his wife Kate, have adult twin sons, Aaron and Matthew, and a married daughter, Allison (Partheev Shah), as well as 6 year old granddaughter, Addison.
The Rev. Rebecca J. Tollefson, a native of Iowa, became the Executive Director of the Ohio Council of Churches in April, 1997. She has held ministerial standing in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) since 1981.
Rebecca served for 10 years in parish ministry in Iowa and Minnesota, as the Director of the Commission on Faith and Order for the Minnesota Council of Churches, and then joined the national staff of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in 1991. While there she served as Associate, Women Employed by the Church, and later as Associate for Call Referral Services.
"I believe in ecumenism....the church universal. This is vital to the Christian faith community’s presence today. We are ALREADY the Body of Christ. We are called to live that out as sisters and brothers. We each have gifts and traditions which enrich the other. I am blessed to work with such a wonderful tapestry of who this Council is. Thanks be to God.”
Tom Smith is a graduate of the Ohio State University with a Masters degree in administration. He served for 15 years in the Ohio Senate in various staff positions including Chief of Staff and Senate Clerk. He finished his public service as Public Affairs Director for the State Treasurer.
Upon his retirement he joined the staff of the Council as the Legislative Advocate. He is the editor of the Legislative Brief, published bi-monthly. He is a member of Westerville Community United Church of Christ.
Cindy began working with the Council in November 2013. She is a solutions-oriented professional with over 15 years of experience in accounts payable, accounts receivable, payroll and human resources record keeping with a broad range of clients in various industries. She is a part of Kaiser Consulting.
African Methodist Episcopal,
-Third Episcopal District
African Methodist Episcopal Zion,
-Mid Atlantic One Area
Alliance of Baptists,
Christian Church in Ohio (Disciples of Christ)
Christian Methodist Episcopal Church,
Committee on Publication for Ohio
Church of the Brethren,
-Northern Ohio District
-Southern Ohio District
Community Churches, Ohio Fellowship
Episcopal Church in the USA
-Diocese of Ohio
-Diocese of Southern Ohio
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
-Northeastern Ohio Synod
-Northwestern Ohio Synod
-Southern Ohio Synod
Greek Orthodox Church
Moravian Church in America
Ohio Baptist General Convention
Presbyterian Church (USA)
Synod of the Covenant
Religious Society of Friends
Wilmington Yearly Meeting
Roman Catholic Church
-Diocese of Columbus
United Church of Christ
United Methodist Church
-East Ohio Conference
-West Ohio Conference