Condit Presbyterian Church has been without a pastor for several years. There were visiting pastors and interim pastors, but that changed on Monday, Nov. 16, when the Rev. Annie Malick came on board to lead the fellowship full time.
Malick is an Ohio native who grew up in Defiance, did undergraduate work at Ohio Northern University, and earned a master’s of divinity degree at Ashland Theological Seminary.
Malick began her ministry at the Church of the Open Door in Elyria, served at the Korean Presbyterian Church in Cleveland, and most recently was the associate pastor of family ministry at First United Presbyterian in Alliance. She also had the opportunity to do short-term mission work, teaching and preaching in Cote d’Ivoire, Cameroon, Serbia, Italy, Quebec, Costa Rica, and Brazil.
It wasn’t a straight path into the ministry, Malick said; it was more circuitous. While working as a church camp counselor one summer during college, Malick said she sensed a call to ministry. She didn’t know any female pastors at that time and didn’t have any idea what to do with a call to ministry, so she stuck with her original plan to attend law school.
“Just a few months later, I was in a bad accident that changed those plans, and I spent much of the next year in physical therapy,” Malick said. “I worked for a few years as an accountant and married my husband, Lyle, in 1982, and in 1986 we started a family.”
Malick said she loved staying home with her four children when they were young. She volunteered at churches in Raleigh, North Carolina, and Elyria, Ohio, doing committee work, music ministry, children and teens, teaching adults, church government and finances.
“I was called to full-time ministry in 2000 as the drama director and director of women’s ministries at my church in Elyria,” Malick said. “A few years later, I transitioned into the position of director of global outreach, and I had the privilege of working with missionaries around the world. Cross-cultural ministry taught me to approach ministry as a student of culture wherever God has called me to serve.”
Malick was ordained earlier this year, and comes to Condit Presbyterian at a time when the congregation is seeking renewal. She called the congregation of about 100 a small and mighty fellowship.
“I’m really excited about what we’re doing here,” Malick said. “The congregation is excited about their future; they’re willing to work to develop. I like our church makeup. We have great volunteers here. It’s a great foundation to work with. I think it’s going to be a good fit.”
Malick said Condit Presbyterian is, in her words, going to do some new things. She has worked with children and their families using a Montessori method; the church already has a nice vacation Bible school that will be expanded; and fellowship members will hold a leadership retreat in January.
“As far as worship, I like to do creative things,” Malick said. “We’ll be focusing on our worship service and children’s and youth services. I like how the young people here are so connected; how they serve as teenagers. They grow up knowing they have a part in this ministry.”
Annie and Lyle Malick have four children, the youngest still in high school. Lyle, originally from Johnstown, is a computer programmer for Medic Management Group in Akron and works from home. Annie said they would do a slow move to allow their youngest son to graduate with his class.
“I find it very interesting God has taken me all over the world and brought me here, 10 miles from my in-laws in Johnstown,” Malick said. “If people are looking for a place to connect with God, we’d love to have them visit us. We would love to see young families here.”
Condit Presbyterian Church is at 15102 Hartford Road in Trenton Township, and can be found online at conditchurch.org. Sunday services are at 10 a.m.; Sunday school for teens and adults begins at 9 a.m.
Reporter Lenny C. Lepola can be reached at 614-266-6093