Ray Of Hope Church Of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Inc.
The LGBTQSIAN2ss+ Pride Activities, and Social Events Center of Elmira, NY.
The only Church in Central New York founded and fostered by the GLBTQSIA2ss+ community for 39 years. October 31, 2022 - 39th Anniversary now in our 40th year in Ministry.

His/herstory of Ray Of hope Church Of Our Lord Jesus Christ pertaining to the first year of existence.

We found a letter dated October 23, 1984 where Mr. Ted Ewald wrote the following information; of which this is only the hightlights.....

"I am the founder of this church and I am currently the worship coordinator.... Our church began July of 1983, with the beginning of a fesibility study, the first meeting was attended by 14 people. On October 31st at the District Conference of the Northeast District, we were accepted as a Study Group which is our current status. Our membership has grown from the original 14 to 29 at the present time. We have weekly attendance between 25 and 35 persons. We have an organist and have recently started a choir. We have everything in our favor for building a strong church here in Syracuse, and over the past year we have proved that. We have five active people on our board of directors and I Ted, coordinate everything." 

We found some records from the same period that document the following information:
First attendance on record: 18 September, 1983 14 in attendance
25 September - 20 in attendance
16 October 18 in attendance and Mr. Ted Ewald gave the sermon.

Membership classes were offered on November 6, 13, and 20, 1983. In a letter dated January 11, 1984 Ted Ewald wrote: "We have conducted our first membership classes and have taken in 9 members, we are currently conducting another membership class, so by the end of January we expect to have 15 members and 25 to 30 people in attendnce."

During the First Annual Congregational Meeting, held on October 14, 1984, Mr. Robb Bacon was elected to a three year term on the board. Robb Bacon remained active in Ray Of Hope Church Of Our Lord Jesus Christ up to the day of his passing on to Paradise on December 23, 2018. Robb Bacon was a Member of this Congregation for 35 years.

Another letter says: "An anniversary dinner" was planned for October 28, 1984. 

A special congregational meeting was called on March 10, 1985 for "the sole purpose of determining whether or not to call The Rev. Joseph C. Fischer to be our pastor and worship coordinator." Rev. Fischer was called on this date.

Rev. Fischer is a retired Pastor of the congregation. Mr. Joseph C. Fischer (former Rev. Joseph C. Fischer) does not hold Clergy Credentials with Ray Of Hope Church Of Our Lord Jesus Christ as of December 17, 2000. More information and documentation is available upon request made to the Council of the church.

The Articles of Incorporation are posted here. 

N.Y.S. Department Of State Division Of Corporations And State Records shows as of 12/28/2000 our name was officially changed to Ray Of Hope Church Of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Inc.

under Section 803 of the Not-for-Profit Corporation Law

The name of this corporation is RAY OF HOPE CHURCH, INC.

The date of incorporation was August 25, 1986, and the incorporation document was filed with the Department of State under the Not-for-Profit Corporation Law of the State of New York on June 3, 1987, in Albany, New York (State Index Number 19870311).

The original name of the incorporation was Ray Of Hope Church, Metropolitan Community Church. This name was changed by amendment by the Board of Directors, pursuant to the By Laws of the Corporation at a duly called meeting held on July 14, 1996 to Ray Of Hope Church, Inc. This amendment has been registered with the Department Of State (Index number 1-961104000553).

The corporation is a corporation as defined in subparagraph (a)(5) of Section 102 (Definitions) of the Not-for-Profit Corporation Law. The corporation type under Section 102 is Type B.

The certificate of incorporation is amended to change the name of this corporation as follows:

Paragraph 1 of the certificate of incorporation is amended to read as follows:

1. The name of the corporation is RAY OF HOPE CHURCH OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, INC.

Paragraph 6 of the certificate of incorporation is amended to read as follows:

6. The Secretary of State is designated as agent of the corporation upom whom process against it may be served. A copy of the process against it that has been served on the Secretary of State shall be mailed to RAY OF HOPE CHURCH OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, INC., at Post Office Box 6955, Syracuse, New York 13217-6955. This is the post office address of the corporation in Onondaga County, New York.


This amendment was duly made by its Board of Directors, pursuant to the By Laws of the Corporation at its duly called meeting held on November 26, 2000, at Syracuse, Onondaga, County, New York.


The undersigned have been authorized to execute and file this certificate by the unanimous affirmative vote of all the members of the Board of Directors of said corporation, all of whom were present at a duly scheduled meeting of said Board that had been called pursuant to the requirements of the By Laws of the corporation, all in concurrence with Section 802(a)(2) of the Not-or-Profit Corporation Law.
******* the document is then dated November 26, 2000 and signed by Lawrence Fuller, Chairman of the Board, and Jane Mc Dermott, Corporation Secretary and it is notorized.
More information will be added to this page in the future. 

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Ray Of Hope Church Of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Inc.  The only name associated with this ministry is the "Name above all names."  (see Philippians 2:9-11)
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October 31 is the official anniversary of Ray Of Hope Church.  In truth, there was an evening meeting of the "District Conference of the Northeast District, we were accepted..." (see below for reference).  Being evening it was the same time Martin Luther posted his Ninety-five Theses on the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany in 1517, a move that would eventually be credited as the spark igniting the Reformation.  This was the Vigil, the eve of ALL SAINTS DAY, November 1, therefore called All Hallows Eve.  The only other days that would been more perfect for the start of Ray Of Hope would have been Christmas, Resurrection Sunday, or Pentecost.  We were officially born in the evening of Reformation Day, or in the early hours, of All Saints Day.  Our message has always been the same, "All are welcome" and "You are as welcome here as Christ Himself" (Fr. O'Brien).  November 1, 2022  we began our 40th year of ministry.  We pause to give God thanks and praise for every person who has shared in service to others and to God during these 40 years.  Many have gone on ahead of us and we are grateful for their prayers and support.  We thank God for the Church of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus the Christ of God, and we thank God that we are called to live out the Message and Mission here in this Congregation. On Sunday, November 3, 2019, at 10:30 AM we celebrated the Feast Of All Saints and we dedicated and blessed our new front doors and dedicated the side door as the Kenneth Fraisier Miracle Door.~ Br. Benedict, 11/1/19  (to see the full reference above by Mr. Ted Ewald, the founder of Ray Of Hope, Click Here.)  Read about the Miracle Door and Miracle Painting Click Here.
Read the official documents verifying this is the original church founded in Syracuse, NY in 1983 and incorporated in 1986.  It was originally named Ray Of Hope, Metropolitan Community Church (August 25, 1986, December 12, 1986, June 3, 1987), Not-For-Profit Corporation of New York State.  The name changed to Ray Of Hope Church, Inc. (July 14, 1996).  The current name, Ray Of Hope Church Of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Inc. was established on November 26, 2000, and December 17, 2000.  This is the original church founded by the LGBTQSIAN2ss+ Community of Central New York and has met without any break in the record with monthly meetings by its board of directors and every Annual Meeting of the Congregation.  To read these documents of Incorporation with the State Of New York, right-click here.
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"I.  The primary purpose for which this corporation is formed is sharing in the Worship of God in the Congregational Christian tradition, and to make His will dominant in the lives of men, individually and collectively, as set for in the Holy Scriptures." Source: Certificate of Incorporation, December 12, 1986.  Therefore, Ray Of Hope is a congregational church united in Christ.  To continue reading the documents of establishment RIGHT CLICK HERE.