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Our history began shortly after the turn of the twentieth century. Christian people of Slavic heritage began to arrive in Akron, Ohio. They came from Austria-Hungary. Today we call the places of their origins by different names - Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia. World War I had not yet changed the map of central Europe. These Slovaks were bound to each other more by their common faith and their religious heritage than by their joint ethnic roots. It was important to them that they spoke the came language, but it was more important to them that they worshiped the same God. They quickly earned the respect of others by their dilligence, their thrift, and their willingness to sacrifice for the welfare of the Chrisitian community they created and maintained. 

It was in this way that our St. John Church came into being. In the early 1900's, as the Slovak community of Akron took hold and began to grow, public worship and the religious instruction of the young prompted our grandfathers and our grandmothers to dedicate themselves to the establishment of a Christian congregation. To that end, God sent His servent, Rev. L.A. Jarosi, a Lutheran pastor serving in Clevlenad, Ohio. He served these people with the Word of God and the Sacrements, and it was he who was instrumental in leading the people to organize "The Evengelical Augsburg Confession Church of St. John the Baptist" in South Akron, Ohio on June 21, 1908 with 42 charter members. 

So now there was a congregation, but there was no church building. Consequently, they used the sanctuary of Zion Lutheran Church in downtown Akron. In 1911, they purchased a house of worship at 23 Broad Street, where they continued until October 19, 1952 when they moved into the current house of worship at 550 E. Wilbeth Road. Slovak services along with English services, which were introduced in 1937, continued until the retirement of Rev. Thomas A. Daniel in 1984. We now only have English services. St. John's congregation officially became a member of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod on January 1, 1971 and was a part of the Slovak Evangelical Lutheran Church District until joining the Ohio District, Lutheran Church Missouri Synod on May 23, 1997.

                         TO GOD BE THE GLORY!

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