Our History – page 2
On July 6, 1927 the razing of the old church began and after difficulties with excavation, occasioned by the hardness of rock encountered, the walls of the present edifice began to rise. The laying of the cornerstone took place August 28, 1927, with appropriate ceremonies conducted by Rev. H. Baumgardner and an address by Dr. Rowand, Superintendent of the Toledo District. In the cornerstone were sealed the history of the church, the pastor’s name, names of the trustees, the stewards, and the advisory board.
The trustees included: Harry Skilliter (president), Earl Camper, Don Bell, Robert Skilliter, Jay Gregg, Carl Groweg, John Shessler, and Nelson Wood.
On the Advisory Building Committee were Enola Skilliter, Pearle Frent, Gertrude Bell, Eva Wood, and Lura Humlong. Stewards were Enola Skilliter, Pearle Frent, May Bloomfield, Molly Weyandt, Ethel Bell, Cora Freese, and Eva Wood.
Officers of the Sunday School were Harry Skilliter (Superintendent Emeritus), Wesley Tillotson (Superintendent), Lyle LaPlantz (Secretary), Ann Shessler (Treasurer), Carl Groweg (Assistant Superintendent), and Don Bell (Attendance Officer).
Teachers included Pearl Frent, May Dunn, Isabelle James, Grace Bell, Kathryn Wood, Ethel Bell, Robert Skilliter, Arthur James, Ethel Gardner, Lyle Gardner, and G. Niehausmeyer.
On December 15, 1927, contractors Bollen & Gerding gave the completed building to the Building Committee of the church, however the church was not dedicated until the following spring when Bishop L.A. Smith conducted the service. The choir wore robes for the first time at this memorable event! It was at this time that the official church name of Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church was adopted, as suggested by Enola Skilliter.
Attempts to pay off the debt were hampered by the Great Depression, however the feat was accomplished while Rev. S. E. Bruner was pastor. This occurred in 1938.
Shortly after that, plans were begun to redecorate the church, but little could be done due to a scarceness of materials. Suggestions to remodel it into its present form was then made by Harold Sigler, and although not completed exactly as proposed, the results were very similar.
Through 1948, nearly $3,000 had been spent, all of which had been subscribed before the work was begun. Also in 1948, the church finally became a single-point charge. For more than 90 years it was served as a circuit charge … ministers assigned here shared their duties at the same time with either Elmore, Woodville, Millbury, or LaCarne. The first appointment was made by Bishop Hazen G. Werner who installed Rev. John Marshall Sutton, a Garrett Theological Seminary graduate student, as the first full-time minister.
Formation of the Arts and Memorials Committee in 1948 gave the membership another media through which recognitions could be given. Through donations to the committee, the cross and candlestick holders were purchased in March, 1950 and dedicated to the memory of Maurice R. Johnson.
In the years since, many memorial gifts have been dedicated for the beautification of the church. Included among these are hymnals, furniture, music equipment, electronic projection equipment, computers, and many others which are greatly appreciated.
In 1956, under Rev. Frank Rowe, the church had the honor of celebrating its centennial anniversary. This was a good time for members to look back over the years and evaluate what had been accomplished through the years. From time to time improvements in the church interior were made, and the parsonage was remodeled and redecorated. Many names of faithful and loyal workers can be recalled. Outstanding in service to the Sunday School was the name of Harry Skilliter who served as Superintendent for more than twenty-five years, and his wife Enola, who served in many capacities, and was church Treasurer for many years.
Records indicate a varied membership total, and it is not known if the totals were just for Genoa, or included totals from LaCarne, Woodville, Millbury, and/or Elmore. In 1900, membership was listed at 130, and a pastor salary of $534 was assigned to Rev. C. A. Parks.
Membership reported to the Ohio Conference in 1949 was listed at 199, with an annual salary at $2,200.
The 1954 Ohio Conference report showed 252 members, and a salary of $2,860.