History

Nazarenes have had a home in northern Appalachia and the Three Rivers area from the early days of the movement. What started as the Pittsburgh District in 1907 has spawned three separate districts which have likewise grown into other districts, together comprising hundreds of local churches with thousands of members and thousands more sharing the fruits of our ancestors’ faithful ministry.

Over the past 110 years, our district has uniquely witnessed the rise and fall of the domestic steel, oil, and manufacturing industries which generated so much of the nation’s wealth and drew so many here during the Industrial Revolution and which subsequently dispersed so many of our neighbors in recent decades. Even as our region embraces its new identity as a world-leading technological, medical, and educational center, that quintessentially rugged-and-resolute, consummately loyal, and characteristically blue-collar culture still thrives.

Today, the Pittsburgh District represents over 6,000 members among 76 local congregations across western Pennsylvania. Together, we are making Christlike disciples in the nations and close to home.

Below is a brief history of the Pittsburgh District compiled by two saints of the church, Marion Acton and Lauren Cousins, to commemorate our first 100 years. For a brief history of the Church of the Nazarene globally, please see the “Historical Statement” in the Manual.