Home > WHO WE ARE
We are one church in two locations. We are a diverse body of believers who gather in Athens, Ohio. We are a congregation who loves our community and who desires to see the love of Jesus transform our town and our world.
Our roots in this town go back more than one hundred years. In 1906, we were a small body of people sent out of Athens First UMC to the Westside of town to start a new church. For over a century, Central shifted and evolved and was refined and grew. By 2010, we had begun to outgrow our original location at 73 Central Avenue. We expanded into a dual-campus model, adding services at our Uptown location, Central Venue, located at 29 E Carpenter Street.
We believe that the community in which we live, learn, work, and play has a ton to teach and offer us as a church, and we'd like to think that the same is true the other way around. So we aim to be a church that makes sense for Athens - a diverse gathering of people for whom everything from the way we treat one another, to the music we play, to the way we dress, are simply the outpouring of the people whom God has created us to be in the context of our community. Some might call it a "come as you are" community. If that sounds like the sort of thing you want to be a part of, we'd love to see you. (You can always find our current services times for each location at the bottom of our page.)
Every few years at Central, we try to do a brief survey of our congregation to learn about what our body really looks like. Because we are in a college town whose population is naturally very transient (the average length of time individuals spend attending our church averages to 5.1 years), our congregation is constantly shifting with new people joining us and others saying "bye, for now!"
The last time we conducted the survey was on Sunday, February 15, 2014. On that morning, we collected information from 227 adults and an additional 54 children under the age of 18. Below, you can see a few data pieces we gathered from that which speak to the wide range of people who generally worship together at Central. We believe that worshipping with others from a variety of different backgrounds and leanings offers opportunity for growth and edification.