Who We Are'Love God, Love Each Other, Make Disciples'
Forestdale Community Church is a place of family, where all are welcome and we encourage visitors with a warm greeting. Outwardly as modest and unassuming as the little building we gather in, Forestdale lives paycheck to paycheck without any endowment. The church numbers around 100 regular attendees, with members of all ages, races, ethnicities and backgrounds. Forestdale is a member of the Conservative Congregational Christian Conference, a denomination that believes strongly in the autonomy of each local church under Christ. Our governance is based on the Congregational model, meaning that about a quarter of our 100 members serve in some office in rotating terms. Forestdale has always been a missional church, investing more in people than in buildings or programs. It dedicates between 10 and 15 percent of its budget to a variety of missions. The simple motto we live by: “love God, love others, make disciples.”
We are a church composed of people from many different faith backgrounds who are interested in spiritual growth and maturity. We enjoy worship characterized by lots of singing, hearing God’s word, and praying together. We enjoy fellowship and Bible study. We welcome visitors warmly but quietly. We are more than “Sundays only,” committed to integrating what we learn and experience when gathered into our everyday lives and in service to the community around us.
Important Dates in The History of Our Church
1892: First Congregational Church in Malden plans the building of a “chapel” as a “mission” to the Forestdale neighborhood.
1893: Chapel dedication service.
1933: First Congregational Church plans for the transition of the Chapel into an independently functioning body.
1934: Forestdale Chapel officially becomes the Forestdale Community Church of Malden with Rev. Ralph E. Dodge as pastor. Rev. Dodge leaves FCC to begin a lifelong missionary career in Central Africa.
1934 -1983: Forestdale employs 21 different interim pastors from local seminaries to lead the church.
1983: Paul McPheeters is called by the church as its first full-time pastor.
1999: FCC joins the Conservative Congregational Christian Conference
2000: FCC calls its first Associate Pastor, Jeff Hancock, and plans the planting of a church in Malden’s Edgeworth neighborhood.
2001: FCC worships jointly with the new Community Church of Edgeworth (now called Seven Mile Road) led by Matt Kruse, a former FCC member.
2005: Members Jeff & Heather Hancock leave FCC to lead a large Presbyterian Church in North Carolina.
2007: FCC calls David Erickson as a short-term Associate Pastor in preparation for another church plant.
2011: David Erickson transitions out of A.P. role at FCC to begin a mission to Reading, MA.