A painting of the church, January 1986.
Holy Faith’s Unique History: The Story of Two Congregations Becoming One
In 1966 - as the population grew - the Village of Saline officially became a city. At about the same time, Faith Lutheran and Holy Cross Episcopal began as separate congregations sharing our current building with each congregation having its own separate worship space. In the late 1990s, talks began between the national bodies of the Episcopal Church and the ELCA (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America) to develop a true Christian fellowship.
In July 2000, an agreement entitled "Called to Common Mission" (CCM) was drafted and approved, and our two denominations achieved full communion. This officially opened up the possibility of sharing pastors and combining congregations to worship together as one. (Click here to learn more).
In 2005, Faith Lutheran and Holy Cross Episcopal embraced CCM and combined to form one congregation, Holy Faith Church. Thus began our new life worshiping together in joy and faith. We enjoy voice and vote in the decisions of both the Southeastern Michigan Synod of the ELCA and the Episcopal Diocese of Michigan. Today, Holy Faith Church is one of a handful of combined Episcopal and ELCA churches in the United States.
A History of Flexibility and Risk-Taking for the Gospel
From the very beginning when the two separate congregations agreed to share space, Holy Faith has been marked by a spirit of cooperation, flexibility, and a willingness to take risks for the sake of sharing Christ’s love with neighbors. Holy Faith’s enduring capacity for innovation and flexibility helped the community thrive even during COVid. Without missing a beat, the congregation established hybrid worship and found new ways to care for one another and serve neighbors.
Pastors of Faith Lutheran, Holy Cross Episcopal & Holy Faith (combined ELCA & Episcopal)
Through the years, many pastors have served here, including many women. Both the Lutheran and Episcopal Churches began ordaining women in the 1970s. Almost as soon as women could be ordained, Faith Lutheran and Holy Cross Episcopal began calling women to lead. Most notably, the Rev. Carolyn “Cally” Tanner Irish, who led Holy Cross Episcopal 1986-1988, went on to become the 10th diocesan Bishop of Utah. Pastor Dale Truscott (2003-2006) is credited with helping the 2 congregations merge. Truscott’s successor, the Rev. Ian Reed Twiss (2007-2014), helped the newly federated congregation (named Holy Faith) become financially self-supporting
The first handpainted "two in one" sign, circa 1983, before the formal joining of the two congregations.