Radcliffe Presbyterian Church USA is a loving, caring inter-generational community with an emphasis on disciple making, spiritual growth and education. We desire to develop a culture of evangelism where each person and each ministry is constantly seeking opportunities to invite new persons into the Body of Christ.
It was the early 1880’s when Reverend Harris organized a Presbyterian Sunday School, not far from Fort and Houston Streets in Atlanta, Georgia. This venture led to the founding of the first church, The New Hope Presbyterian Church by Elders Upshaw, Love and Brown, and was erected at the convergence of Markham and Maple Streets. Reverend A.R. Wilson was called to be the first pastor of this great church. The friendly disposition of Reverend Wilson won the ear of the Radcliffe Family while reaching out for financial support on his mission journeys to the north. As a result of these efforts, monetary and spiritual resources from friends and the headquarters’ board, a new church was built and named after the Radcliffe Family. This church was dedicated in 1901 and was called Radcliffe United Presbyterian Church.
After Reverend Wilson’s 3 years of service, a rapid succession of God’s servants were called to pastor the church. Reverend W.A. Weaver, Reverend Gabriel Thompson, Reverend Sandy D. Thom (1919 – 1927), Reverend J. H. Byers (1927 – 1929), Reverend C.J. Baker (1929 – 1931), Reverend John P. Foster (1931), Reverend DeWitt Talmadge Murray (1935 – 1943) and Reverend Robert T. Newbold, Jr. (1946 – 1953) were the servants called to shepherd Radcliffe Presbyterian Church.
Around the 1950’s, Greater Atlanta presented plans for expansion and a concerned Radcliffe membership was faced with relocation. In the midst of this chaotic time, Reverend Newbold was called to serve another congregation. As the membership pressed on to locate, purchase and find ways to finance the new Radcliffe, a leader came with great expectation and determination in uplifting and guiding the distressed congregation. Reverend William S. Mercer, a graduate of Lincoln University and McCormick Theological Seminary, was up to the task and became the next pastor of Radcliffe Presbyterian Church.
After many changes and challenges, winter 1958 brought elation when members of the Radcliffe congregation gathered at Hightower and Collier Roads, in Northwest Atlanta, to witness and celebrate the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Radcliffe Presbyterian Church building. For 22 months, Radcliffe held their Sunday morning worship services at the Westside Y.W.C.A. while the new facility was built. The church was blessed with 30 disciples who joined Radcliffe despite this transition period.
On the second Sunday, December 1958, the Radcliffe membership entered the Fellowship Hall of the new facility with a clear vision and realization for a richly diversified ministry. Leading up to this day, church and community members rallied together to get underwriters for pews, donations for hymnbooks, furnishings for the chancel area and equipment for the kitchen, all to make this a new church “home.” Organizations such as the Presbyterian Women, the Men of Radcliffe, the Volunteer Service Guild, the “C” Ladies, the HIMSingers were formed, and continue, to minister to the church and community.
The neighboring community around the church came in large numbers to the dedication ceremony on March 8, 1959. At the close of the first year of ministering to the people, planning, implementing and raising money, Radcliffe had received 59 new members. The new structure and members allowed Radcliffe to have a presence in the community and embark upon activities that nurtured, molded and inspired the congregation. Reverend Mercer began to call Radcliffe “the church of the creative spirit.”
When Reverend William S. Mercer retired from Radcliffe in 1987, Reverend Lawrence Bottoms and Reverend Mitchell Johnson served as interim pastors before Reverend Dr. Lloyd Green, Jr. became the next pastor of Radcliffe Presbyterian Church, and was installed on April 29, 1990.
Reverend Dr. Lloyd Green, Jr. retired from Radcliffe in 2010 after 20 years of faithful service. Reverend Dr. David L. Wallace, Sr. became our interim pastor and served for two years, preparing the congregation for its next installed pastor. On January 6, 2013, Reverend Dr. Andrew L. Stephens, Jr. greeted the congregation with his inaugural sermon entitled, Thank You. Reverend Stephens was installed as Radcliffe’s pastor, February 24, 2013.