"Enter into his gates with thanksgiving,
and into his courts with praise;
be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting;
and his truth endureth to all generations."
Psalm 100: 4-5
St. Paul United Church of Christ in Chelsea, Michigan traces its beginnings to the year 1854 when the Rev. Friedrich Schmid, pioneer German missionary who founded more than 20 churches in Michigan, began conducting occasional services for 5 Chelsea area families. These families had come to Chelsea from Wuerttemberg, Germany and spoke the mother tongue, but there were only two English-speaking churches in the area. In 1855 Pastor Schmid was conducting services every fourth week in the homes of families. By 1865 the congregation, now at 15 families, decided to build their own church. In 1868, the congregation adopted a constitution and later that year, the cornerstone for the new building was laid. In 1869, 43 members took communion in the new church.
1875 brought the first mention of Sunday School, and the church owned its first parsonage. In 1883 the first church organ was purchased for $85.35 – it is still on display in the church lounge. In February of 1892, the congregation voted to build a new church. The cornerstone was laid in September, and the new building on Summit Street was dedicated in December.
In 1934, St. Paul was included in the merger of the Evangelical and Reformed Church bodies. A new church hall was built and dedicated in 1940. The 75th anniversary of the founding of the church was observed. In 1942, German services were discontinued.
In 1957, St. Paul was included in the merger of the Evangelical and Reformed Church with the Congregational Christian Church to form the United Church of Christ. In 1961, the congregation voted to build a new church building. A groundbreaking ceremony was held at the new church site on Old US 12 in 1965. That November St. Paul completed its centennial celebration with the laying of the cornerstone for the new church. The congregation moved into the new church in October of 1966.
In 2015, St. Paul celebrated both the 15oth anniversary of its founding, as well as the 50th anniversary of the current building. We honored our long history, but we also look excitedly to the future for God is still speaking.