Ground was broken for the new Gothic style church building on November 16, 1877. The cornerstone of Brunswick granite, with a raised St. Andrew's Cross, was laid on St. Andrew's Day, November 30, 1877. The weather held for seven weeks so that the men could work on the building in their shirtsleeves until January 2, 1878. The parish held its first service in the new building on Easter Sunday, April 21, 1878; and on August 3, 1881, the church, which cost about $8,000.00 to build, but now free of debt, was consecrated by
the Rt. Rev. William Bissell, Bishop of Vermont.
Throughout the years, the church has been graced with many memorial gifts. The oldest gift was the E.G. and G. Hook and Hastings tracker organ with 397 pipes. The organ was given in memory of Ellen G. Griswold by her husband, Civil War captain Edward G. Griswold, in June, 1882.
In 1941, under the leadership of The Rev. Stanley P. Jones, a Guild Hall was built in the church basement. This was later to be known as Jones Hall.
In 1956, the Church celebrated its 75th anniversary. The Rev. George A. Heald was Rector, and the Rt. Rev. Vedder Van Dyke was Bishop of the Diocese. The anniverary was celebrated on November 25th of that year. Among other memorial gifts, an altar was given in memory of the Rev. John H. Klaren and his wife Susan, by their children. Reverend Klaren was Rector of the parish in 1923-1924.
The facade of the building, 1950's.
Photo courtesy of the Athenaeum
On August 2, 1981 St. Andrew's joyfully celebrated its 100th anniversary. The Rt. Rev. Robert S. Kerr, Bishop of Vermont, was Celebrant and Preacher at the commemorative service. The Rev. John Flora, Rector, was ably assisted in the festivities by the Rev. Richard Phillips. On display were duplicated copies of the original Articles of Association as well as newspaper clippings, Bibles, prayerbooks and hymnals.
From November 1979 to November 1983, worship services were held in Jones Hall in an effort to conserve fuel.
Restorations to the building and grounds over the years have included a major organ restoration project, repair and maintenance of the stained-glass windows, installation of six new memorial windows, and a parish office in Jones Hall. In 1996 the church concluded a successful Preservation Fund drive which resulted in major repairs to the church belfry as well as repairing and painting the outside of the church building. On Easter Day, 1996, the church bell rang again for the first time in about twenty-five years.
Since the beginning of the parish, 24 Rectors have served St. Andrew's Church. The first women priests to serve St. Andrew's were The Revs. Elsa Wahlberg, Ann Hockridge, and Jean MacDonald, during an interim ministry period, 1998--2001.
The Revs. Jean MacDonald, Elsa Wahlberg, and Ann Hockridge, 1998.
Our Story Today
Our current priest is the Rev. Jean MacDonald who began her ministry with us on September 5, 2008 as Priest-in-Partnership and is now our Rector.
During the winter 0f 2009, pipes burst in the sanctuary, flooding the wooden floor and draining down into Jones Hall. A complete reconstruction of Jones Hall ensued, including a new kitchen space, new offices, and the addition of a handicap accessible bathroom. The floor of the sanctuary was refurbished and the pews replaced with movable chairs. Both the Hall and the sanctuary are reflections of our desire to be in community with each other and to offer our space for use to the wider local community--concerts, art exhibits, agency meetings, to name a few.
Jones Hall set up for a gathering
The refurbished sanctuary
The story of St. Andrew's would not be complete without giving thanks and praise for the thousands of people who have worshipped here and who have given generously of their time, talents, and treasures for the Glory of God and the work of the Church. Our members today honor the saints of the past and continue God's mission for the future.