Our Savior's Rocky River
Bringing - Building - Sending
Custodian: Gerry & Marie Sternad
Church Office Administrator: Deborah Dzurilla
Music Director: David Strieter
AV/Technician: Jacob Wylie
Pastor Mark Rollenhagen
Pastor Mark is a member of the board of director of Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry and was elected to the Synod Council of Northeastern Ohio Synod of the ELCA in 2013. He is a graduate of Trinity Lutheran Seminary near Columbus, Ohio.
Mark is a former newspaper reporter and editor who worked at the Cleveland Plain Dealer for 18 years before leaving in 2008 to complete his ministry studies. Before The Plain Dealer, he was reporter at the Toledo (Ohio) Blade and the Harrisburg (Pa.) Patriot-News.
He writes regularly for the Cleveland Plain Dealer’s “Messages of Faith” column and was recently interviewed on WCPN 90.3 “Sound of Ideas” show about the decline of religious affiliation in Ohio.
He and his wife, Alison, live in Faith’s neighborhood in southwest Lakewood.
President: Joan Zeager
Vice-President: Serena Cottrell
Congregational Secretary: Kathy Berkshire
Financial Secretary: Fred Ayers
Treasurer: Larry Jacobson
At Large: Cindy Cook
At Large: Karen Sperli
Our Savior's Rocky River Lutheran Church, located at 20300 Hilliard Blvd., is the product of a merger of 2 Scandinavian churches; Our Savior's Lutheran Church, a Norwegian congregation formally located on West 58th & Franklin, and Immanuel (Rocky River) Lutheran Church, a Danish Congregation whose Eastlook location dates back to 1897. Missionary pastors had been serving the spiritual needs of Norwegian immigrants as early as 1874, and the Scandinavian Evangelical Lutheran Church of Cleveland, which eventually evolved into Our Savior's traces its beginnings to 1878.
As the membership of Our Savior’s began moving westward, and Rocky River continued to grow and to develop a suburban character, the 2 congregations who had a similar language and heritage and who had often shared a pastor during their respective histories began to explore merger. Although that merger as Our Savior’s Rocky River Lutheran Church became effective on January 28, 1951, groundbreaking for the building at its present Hilliard Blvd. site did not take place until August 17, 1952, and the first service in the new sanctuary did not occur until September 6, 1953. In the meantime, the newly merged congregation worshiped at the Beachcliff Theater on Detroit Road.
Our Savior’s Rocky River Lutheran Church is one of the more than 200 congregations that make up the Northeastern Ohio Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
Our Savior’s involvement in the Rocky River community includes, since 1981, being the Meals on Wheels preparation and distribution site for the Rocky River area, and, since 1971, providing a state-accredited nursery school for our community’s three and four year-olds.