From its inception, Valley View was destined to be a community church. Valley View was and continues to be a beacon of hope in its community, focusing its ministry toward the needs of its neighbors.
Valley View (VV) Church started as a dream in the hearts of a few members in the East Liberty Presbyterian Church (ELPC) in 1876. It grew out of a Sunday school which started in November 1894 by the Young People’s Association and workers from East Liberty Sabbath school. Among them were Mr. William H. Smith, Mr. J. W. Robinson, Mr. R. B. McIntosh, and others. Some time later, preaching services began and the Rev. George M. Ryall, a son of East Liberty, supplied for them during the summer vacation.
In 1902, Mr. O. H. Allerton so generously donated a lot at the top of Black Street where a chapel was built for about $15,000 at the time, which is equivalent to over $530,000 today. On May 6, 1914, Valley View was organized into a church by the Presbytery. ELPC dismissed one hundred thirteen members to Valley View and Mr. M. D. Shields, Mr. George S. Graham, and Mr. S. E. Gill, elders from ELPC, were pioneer helpers in this ministry. It was at this point a dream became a reality and Valley View became a testimony to God’s grace and faithfulness.
In 1944, the National Board of Missions supplanted East Liberty Presbyterian Church as Valley View’s chief subsidiary and source of staffing.
At various times throughout Valley View’s history, declining membership threatened its existence, such as in the early 1960s until Rev. Robert Hendrickson was brought to Valley View around 1965. He helped by taking its ministry into the newly developed housing development in Garfield and went door to door, sharing VV’s mission and inviting the neighbors to come worship with them. Many members of the community accepted his invitation and VV’s membership grew.
In 1975, Rev. James Wright added another key component to VV’s ministry: the youth. His love and commitment to the Lord and to the youth caused an influx of young people to migrate to Valley View. Throughout his tenure, Rev. Wright made a lasting impact on the young who came through VV’s doors. The relationship he helped them build with the Lord had powerful effects on them then and is still evident today.
As time passed, ministers changed but the need for ministry in the communities didn’t (and neither did God’s faithfulness to Valley View’s mission!) In 1988, Rev. Charles Ham was brought to Valley View. Another unconventional minister, he utilized relationships he had established with sister churches like Fox Chapel and Hampton to assist with VV’s ministry, recognizing that all are responsible for ministering to the people and these partnerships better equipped VV do so.
Another major blessing occurred during Rev. Ham’s tenure for the congregations of Valley View and Blackadore when they merged in 1990; the Lord blessed this union and they became one. What a joyous day that was!
Years continued to pass and the Lord sent Rev. Ham on a different mission which again changed the dynamics at VV, but as always, our Lord and His faithfulness remained the same. Throughout Valley View’s history, whenever storms would come, our Lord had sent angels in the persons of Dr. Patrick, Rev. M. Yingling, Rev. S. George, Dr. J. Monroe , Dr. J. McKinley, Rev. D. Welch, Rev. L. Harris and the current Rev. Chad Collins and Rev. April Roebuck to shepherd His flock. These angels were sent and continue to work faithfully to do the work He has purposed for Valley View. To this day, our mission holds true: A united people, deeply rooted in God’s word, worshipping in spirit and truth, who love and care for each other.