News from Session: Special called congregational meeting to elect Elders and Deacons this Sunday, Jan 29th, following worship service.

Being Installed as the 13th Pastor of the Old Stone Church

On Sunday, 23 October 2022, at 4pm., the Presbytery of the Western Reserve, installed me as the 13th Senior Pastor of the Old Stone Church, First Presbyterian Church of Cleveland, Ohio.

Being Installed as the 13th Senior Pastor of a 202-year-old congregation is humbling at the very least. Though interim senior pastors have come and gone, only 12 other clergy have been installed to be settled senior pastors. I don’t take this privilege lightly. I am honored to be called to serve God in this place and to be a shepherd to these amazing people.

Though I am a white male like all the senior pastors that have gone before, it is no small thing that I am a married gay-white man. That I have a husband that loves and supports me in this ministry, rather than a wife.

That the congregation of the Old Stone Church would call one such as me, really isn’t a surprise though. Because they have and I trust always will be, willing to step out to include people that others may reject, to be leaders in social justice ministry. They hired me because of my gifts and skills and my love and devotion to serve God. Rather than rejecting me because I happen to be homosexual. That is huge! I hope that is not lost on you as you read this. They have accepted me regardless of what makes me different. They have accepted me knowing that some people won’t be supportive of having a gay pastor because of social prejudices or theological differences.

I believe that our differences make us all the more able to serve God faithfully. That when we stand grounded in the love and mercy of God, God transcends that which divides or separates us.

Being gay is a part of who I am, though it doesn’t define who I am. Helping people to grow spiritually and deepen their relationship with God through Christ is ever front and central for me. That is why the Spirit of God led them and me to journey the years ahead together. Calling people to faithful witness, to live into the unique person God has created them to be, is vital to me. Strengthening and maintaining a safe environment and healthy growing congregation where all are welcome is my goal.

This congregation has worshiped and witnessed to God’s love here in the heart of Cleveland for over 202 years. For how ever many years I am able to serve here as the Senior Pastor of this congregation and the community surrounding our church, I count as blessing.

Blessings,
Pastor Stephen

I believe that our differences make us all the more able to serve God faithfully. That when we stand grounded in the love and mercy of God, God transcends that which divides or separates us.

About the Rev. Stephen C. Blonder Adams

Rev. Stephen C. Blonder Adams is the Senior Pastor at Old Stone Church