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Our History

This is the record and denominational history of the work and planting of a Christian & Missionary Alliance (C&MA) congregation in Canton, Ohio. Records are scarce due to a fire which destroyed the facility in 1975. Confirmation of any details about the church prior to 1941 is difficult, as that is the first year that the church appears in District records. Much of what is available has been pieced together from several written sources found in surviving church files and from library records.


Four letters of correspondence and a document found in the Stark County Library provide evidence of a C&MA presence in Stark County as early as 1925. The C&MA started the Crystal Park Gospel Tabernacle in 1926. However, after 1927, there is no further information on this congregation.


In the fall of 1936 Mr. Charles Wiandt felt led by the Lord to come to Canton, Ohio to start a branch of the Christian and Missionary Alliance. The work developed through home prayer meetings and visitation. In the spring of 1937, arrangements were made to hold a series of special meetings celebrating the 50th anniversary of the C&MA. In the months following the four weeks of special meetings, various pastors and evangelists came to Canton to conduct Sunday services, which were held in an abandoned Jewish Synagogue. In September of 1937 the first missionary convention was held in Canton.
In October of 1937, Mr. C.M. Richards came from Frontier, Michigan to serve as the pastor. In February of 1938, the church moved to an apartment building on Dewalt Avenue NW.  In April of 1938 Richards left the church for another pastorate. In that same year, Mr. Kellus Buchanan of Orrville took charge of the church. At that time a building at 18th Street and Garfield Avenue SW was used for services.  In the fall of 1938 a Sunday school program was started preceding the regular afternoon services. It was also at this time that the church stopped receiving subsidy from the C&MA, and became entirely self-supporting. The name was also changed from “Canton Gospel Center” to the “The Christian and Missionary Alliance of Canton.” In May of 1939 Mr. Buchanan took a full time pastorate in Royal Oak, Michigan and Mrs. A.T. Rape of Mechanicsburg, Illinois was sent to Canton to give temporary oversight.


Somewhere between 1939 and 1940 Mr. Ralph Uhlinger became the pastor. During Uhlinger’s tenure the church moved to a storefront on 13th Street and Gibbs Avenue. It was also during this time that the church began to conduct Sunday morning worship services. In 1941 the church was officially incorporated and moved in 1943 to a church building located at 7th Street and Gibbs.


In 1948, under the leadership of Pastor Hayes, the congregation built a church on Concord Avenue and remained there until 1966. Five pastors served the Concord Avenue Church. In 1964 the name of the church was changed to “Canton Bible Church.”


Pastor Bob Veitch led the congregation through its second building project in 1966 at which time they constructed the first phase of a building project at 4900 12th Street NW, the location of the church today. In 1970, the name of the church was again changed to reflect the new location, Whipple Heights C&MA Church. In 1975, the church was burned to the ground by unidentified arsonists. The congregation met in the Whipple Heights Elementary School while a new building was erected. In the spring of 1976, the new building was completed and remains the church home of the Whipple Heights C&MA Church in Canton, Ohio.


The church building was remodeled in 2005 to contemporize it and add more space to the lobby and to create more space in the fellowship hall area including a new kitchen and restroom facilities.