Greenville Community Church dates back to 1840 when a handful of Dutch farmers had a vision of a place of worship for the community. They were “long on faith and sacrifice, short on worldly goods.” A local tavern owner by the name of Gilbert Underhill offered them his “tap room” as a place for them to worship. Mr. Underhill’s interest in this group and his generosity continued to grow. In March of 1842 he deeded them enough property for a Church building along with an adjacent cemetery. The small group contracted to build a church, the first church to be built in Scarsdale, New York. On November 9, 1842, this small group of Christians dedicated a little white clapboard church, and they were formally organized.
The new church, then known as The Reformed Protestant Dutch Church of Greenville, was located on what is now Central Avenue, just north of Old Army Road. There had been a rumor that a railroad was to be extended through the Greenville area. While the rumor proved to be untrue, the small but faithful congregation persevered to “sustain the gospel in this place” and the church building was remodeled and enlarged as needed over the years.
The 1920’s brought about a turning point when “urban sprawl” turned the community into a suburb. Houses began to spring up, and the population increased significantly. Membership doubled and finances improved.
During the early 1930s, Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a friend of Greenville Community Church during his stay in the United States. Bonhoeffer was especially close to the family of Richard and Frances Ern, who loaned a 1924 Oldsmobile for Bonhoeffer to use for a road trip to Mexico, which was a grand success.
During the 1950’s, the congregation out-grew the original church building. From a membership of 250 in 1944, the fellowship swelled to more than 600 by 1954 and Sunday school enrollment was up to 385. Recognizing the need for more space, the Consistory recommended the purchase of a seven-acre parcel of land on Ardsley Road, and the present brick Georgian church was built. A formal service was held on October 19, 1958 as the church was dedicated to the Glory of God.
Since the current building was constructed, the environment continued to change. Greenville Community Church has successfully reached out to a wider area to attract congregants. Today’s membership draws individuals from 19 different communities in Westchester County.
Chronology of Ministers
Rev. Victor H. Hulburt, 1842-1845
Rev. Abel T. Stewart, 1846-1852
Rev. Joseph A. Collier, 1853-1855
Rev. A.A. Marcellus, 1856-1859
Rev. C.R.V. Romondt, 1860-1861
Rev. John H. Pitcher, 1861-1873
Rev. R.L. Schoonmaker, 1874-1879
Rev. George A. Ries, 1879-1882
Rev. James Bolton, 1882-1884
Rev. James E. Graham, 1885-1889
Rev. Joseph A. Harper, 1890-1905
Rev. W.A. Smart (Supply), 1906-1907
Rev. James G. Bailey (Supply), 1907-1908
Rev. D. Ernest McCurry, 1909-1912
Rev. Newell L. Sims, 1913-1914
Rev. Fred L. Brownlee, 1915-1916
Rev. Carl Crusius (Supply), 1916-1917
Rev. C.A. Hallenback, 1917-1920
Rev. Thomas Livingston (Supply), 1920-1921
Rev. Franklin Reardon (Supply), 1921-1925
Rev. R.W. Taylor (Supply), 1926-1927
Rev. Harry Stephenson (Supply), 1928-1929
Rev. Richard F. Hanson, 1930-1940
Rev. Theodore Brinckerhoff, 1941-1960
Rev. Llewelyn Lee Kester (Supply), 1960-1961
Rev. Dr. Harvey B. Hoffman, 1961-1968
Rev. Dr. Bernard R. Brunsting, 1968-1982
Rev. Dr. John D. Elliott, 1982-2008
Rev. Eltje J. Brunemeyer, (Interim) 2008-2009
Rev. Dr. Edward H. Schreur, 2009-