Our Church History
A Brief History of
St. Mark Lutheran Church/Missouri Synod

90 Years of Grace from 1923 - 2013

The official date of St. Mark's founding was August 5, 1923. The original name of the church was St. John the Baptist Lutheran Church. The congregation started with 100 people coming from Steubenville, Mingo Junction and Plum Run, Ohio and also Weirton and Colliers, West Virginia.

At that time, worship services were held at Swartz Hall or Lincoln School depending on which location was available for the day. Just 21 months after the establishment of the organization, the congregation decided on a permanent place for worship. On October 17, 1926, the dedication of the new church was held. Pastor J. Manka served the congregation from October 1923 to 1928 as their first Pastor. In 1955, the name of the church was changed from St. John the Baptist Lutheran Church to St. Mark Lutheran Church to avoid confusion with another St. John Lutheran Church in the Steubenville area. 1956 brought a search for a site to build a new church.

1958 saw the purchase of the site and in August of 1963, architectural drawings for the new church building were reviewed. In 1964, members of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church of Wolf Run, Ohio joined into full membership with St. Mark Lutheran Church.


By May of 1966, the new church was dedicated at the present location-133 Lovers Lane. The church, through the Men's Club, Mary of Bethany Guild - LWML and our local AAL Thrivent Branch have been active in supporting community organizations such as the Urban Mission, Salvation Army and the Jefferson County Fourth Street Health Clinic as well as mission work in other communities and countries. During the Thanksgiving holiday, we distribute food baskets to those in need as well as maintaining a small food bank year round. Vacation Bible School provides outreach to the children of our community and their parents.

In 2002, a group called The Holy Rollers was formed. This gifted and dedicated group gets together every Wednesday to bake nut, fruit and poppy seed rolls which are sold during Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas and also at the Farmer's Market in downtown Steubenville. Proceeds go to various needs within the local community.

Not every moment of this journey has been easy. History shows times of overwhelming trials along with peace and joy - the fruit of faith and success. But there will be more challenges ahead. With the guiding Hand of God, we rejoice, for it is His Plan, His Purpose and His Kingdom we are called to serve by His Grace.

In 2013, Reverend David McCloskey became pastor of St. Mark and brought with him his wife Judy and three children. The future of our congregation looks bright in the knowledge that while there are still many new and perhaps trying times ahead, God is with us as He has always been. So let us go forward, united and full of trust in Jesus, who alone is the Way, the Truth and the Life. He will accompany us as we continue on our journey!


We would like to acknowledge with gratitude the past and present Pastors and Vicars of St. Mark Lutheran Church.

Pastor John Manka - Pastor Adam Valencik - Pastor George Kozelniski,
Pastor Francis Machina - Pastor Samuel Mozolak - Pastor John Kucera,
Pastor John Horarick - Pastor Milan Babel - Pastor Joseph Molitoris,
Pastor Kenneth Reed - Pastor Chris Ongstad - Pastor Kenneth Greenwald and Pastor John Telloni
Vicar David Oester - Vicar David Abuya - Vicar John Rutz - Vicar Steven Hoerr
Vicar Brian Rosenkoetter and Vicar Eric Rapp
Present - Pastor David McCloskey

St. Mark Lutheran Church ~ 1923 Charter Members

Reverend John Bajus - Mrs. Anna Bihari - Mr. and Mrs. Michael Bozony
Mr. Andrew Brondos Sr. - Mr. and Mrs. George Brondos - Mr. Joseph Brondos
Mr. and Mrs. Michael Brondos - Mr. George Bruno - Mr. John Bruno - Mrs. Stephen Budai
Mr. John Gecelovsky - Mrs. Elizabeth Gulas - Mr. and Mrs. Martin Kontra
Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Kovalik - Mr. John Kostelnik Sr. - Mr. John Krajec
Mr. and Mrs. John Kuzma - Mr. and Mrs. John Majeros
Mr. and Mrs. John Martin - Mrs. Mary Matajzik - Mr. and Mrs. Peter Pastucha
Mrs. Anna Pesta - Mr. Andrew Shernisky - Mrs. Andrew Swartz - Mr. Andrew Vernarsky

St. Mark's Christmas Program - 1952

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