The 16-member Rosedale Gardens Church was chartered by the Presbytery of Detroit and the Presbyterian Church USA on December 11, 1928, when there were about 30 homes in the immediate neighborhood. Nine years would pass before Rev. John Forsyth became Rosedale Gardens’ first full-time pastor in September 1937. Over the next eight years, he helped the congregation realize many firsts, including an adult choir; church bulletin and newsletters; a youth group; and financial independence. By 1945, the congregation had grown to nearly 240, and both World War II and the Forsyth pastorate came to an end.
Following the war, expansion of the surrounding suburbs brought growth to both church membership and structure. By 1950, the original sanctuary and fellowship hall (today’s chapel and youth hall) could no longer accommodate the congregation’s needs, and the church interior was remodeled. A year later, five classrooms, a pastor’s study, enlarged dining room and kitchen were added. The two-story educational wing was added in 1960 to meet demands for more classroom space. The current sanctuary was dedicated in June 1964, and final remodeling of the youth hall and chapel was completed in 1969.
By the mid-80s, the mortgage was retired, and the Memorial Library dedicated. But as we all know, a church is far more than its building. This congregation has seen four of our young people enter the ministry over the years. It proudly sponsored refugee families following World War II and the Vietnam War. Faithful support of missionary programs worldwide is another hallmark of the Rosedale Gardens Church, whether through the many major mission efforts of our Presbyterian denomination, or on a more personal level in Korea, Jamaica and Mexico.
Today, we remain an active, vibrant and growing membership that constantly challenges itself with the meaning of discipleship. Our Mission Statement helps us to focus on these challenges. Under the leadership of Rev. Kellie Whitlock, we continue to grow with renewed emphasis on our music, education, outreach and service programs. It is our sincere hope that you’d like to join us!
The Presbytery of Detroit and the Presbyterian Church USA
December 11, 1928