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Bethesda Children's Home
15487 State Highway 86
Meadville, PA 16335
(814) 724-7510

Bethesda Leadership Center
349 West 18th Street
Erie, PA 16502
(814) 454-2749

Bethesda Trinity Center
462 West 18th Street
Erie, PA 16502
(814) 453-2468

Our Heritage

Celebrating 95 years of rich tradition and heritage as an agency of the Lutheran Church, Bethesda Children’s Home began its long history of serving children and families as a farm home for orphans in Meadville, Pennsylvania. Located just north of Meadville on more than 370 acres of farmland, Bethesda has become one of the largest private Human Services Organizations in Northwestern Pennsylvania.


Bethesda Children’s Home/Lutheran Social Services (LSS) is an outreach of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Since its inception in 1919, Bethesda Children’s Home has been leading the way in providing care for children, youth, and families in need, and today recognized as one of the most prominent agencies in instituting innovative and effective programming for emotionally and psychologically troubled children and their families.

Bethesda Children’s Home was the vision of one man, Mr. William Wise, a local philanthropist who donated his farm to the Pittsburgh Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church to be used as orphanage. Bethesda has grown to become a multi-million dollar agency serving over 300 children, youth, and families every day. Bethesda’s main campus in Meadville Pennsylvania is a place where kids can grow and improve themselves and develop character values like self-discipline, integrity, respect, responsibility and leadership. Bethesda Children’s Home also provides a positive structured family environment for kids who don’t have one of their own.