- Written by Pastor Carl Tenney
Serving the World
Our vision is that Oak Hills would be a multi-generational, multi-ethnic congregation. A place of generous grace leading to radical transformation through the power, grace, and forgiveness of Jesus Christ. We seek to eliminate barriers and in so doing create an environment where people have unhindered access to the saving grace of Jesus Christ.
People are more important to us than any program, position or title.
We believe in sharing the transforming grace of Jesus and equipping people to live full lives in Christ.
We believe in the power of prayer.
We are a Biblically centered church in the Wesleyan Tradition.
We seek to do ministry following the example that Jesus gave us.
On August 11, 1941 the Wesleyan Methodist Church of Rochester was founded literally on the blood of its people on the corner of West Center Street and 3rd Avenue in a little white church. Fifty-four of its members donated blood to the Mayo Clinic to raise $1,350 to fund the new church.
In 1946 we purchased a brick church at 804 East Center Street. Then in 1968 we constructed a new building at our current location on 28th Street Southwest.
Oak Hills began with a vision to serve the people of Rochester and share the transforming generous grace of Jesus Christ. Today, nearly seventy years later, that vision continues.
Wesleyans believe in one God, who is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and the Savior of all men and women who put their faith in Him alone for eternal life. We believe that those who receive new life in Christ are called to be holy in character and conduct, and can only live this way by being filled with the Lord's Spirit. We believe in the Bible and seek to establish our faith and actions on its teaching. We believe God wills for people everywhere to know Him and that the purpose of the Church is to tell the world about Christ through its worship, witness, and loving deeds.
The Wesleyan Church came into being in 1843 because the mainline denominations refused to take a stand on the issue of slavery. By the 1830s, the South had begun to justify its "peculiar institution." Defenders of slavery claimed that the Bible actually approved of that practice, and it was not expedient to disagree with them. The situation was not much better in the North.
This was the atmosphere in which a few courageous Christians, including Orange Scott and Luther Lee, founded our church. Their purpose was both to spread "scriptural holiness over these lands" and to secure justice for their fellow human beings.