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Community Church of New York

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Church of the Messiah I
Unitarian Church, Mercer Street at Prince Street, New York City.jpg
1826–37, Mercer and Prince Streets
General information
Architectural styleGreek Revival
LocationManhattan, New York City
Opened1826
Demolished1837
Design and construction
ArchitectJosiah R. Brady
Church of the Messiah II
Church of the Messiah, 728-30 Broadway, New York City, 1853.jpg
1839–65, Broadway at Waverly Place
General information
Architectural styleRomanesque Revival
LocationManhattan, New York City
Opened1839
Demolished1865
Church of the Messiah III
Church of the Messiah, E. 34th St. and Park Ave. Published c.1870 by Public Buildings in New York City and Vicinity.jpg
1867–1930, 34th Street and Park Avenue
General information
Architectural styleRomanesque Revival
LocationManhattan, New York City
Opened1867
Demolished1930
Design and construction
ArchitectCarl Pfeiffer

The Second Congregational Church in New York, organized in 1825, was a Unitarian congregation which had three permanent homes in Manhattan, New York City, the second of which became a theater after they left it. In 1919 the congregation joined the Community Church Movement and changed its name to Community Church of New York.[1] The same year its church, on 34th Street, was damaged by fire.[2] Since 1948 the congregation has been located at 40 East 35th Street.[3][4]: 49 

Origins

The first Unitarian Society in New York was founded May 24, 1819, and incorporated on November 15th under the name "First Congregational Church in the City of New York" (later "Unitarian Church of All Souls"), although there had been between three and five Congregational churches in the city before that.[5]: 369  On January 20, 1821, the congregation dedicated a newly built church on Chambers Street, west of Church Street.[5][4]: 12,B60 

By 1825, the church had become crowded, and many of the pew holders lived above Canal Street. A meeting was held March 19 of persons disposed to unite in building a church there for Unitarian worship, and "The Second Congregational Unitarian Society" was formed. They built a church on the northwest corner of Prince and Mercer Streets, opening on December 7, 1826. William Ellery Channing preached a sermon[6] and William Cullen Bryant, a member of the congregation, wrote a hymn for the occasion. Designed by Josiah R. Brady, the edifice was one of the earliest Greek Revival buildings in New York.[5][3][4]: 48,E86 

Orville Dewey became pastor in 1835, a position he held until 1848. During his tenure, on November 26, 1837, the church building was completely destroyed by fire. The congregation took temporary quarters until May 2, 1839, when their new church, which they called Church of the Messiah, opened for worship at 728–30 Broadway, opposite Waverly Place.[7][5][8]

In January 1865 that church was sold to department store magnate A. T. Stewart and converted into a theater, which subsequently operated under a series of names, including Globe Theatre, and ending with New Theatre Comique. It burned down in 1884.[9][5][4]: 48 

34th Street

The congregation's third church, on 34th Street at the northwest corner of Fourth (Park) Avenue, was inaugurated in 1867. It was designed in Victorian Romanesque style by Carl Pfeiffer.[4]: 48 

On May 25, 1919, Rev. John Haynes Holmes, minister from 1907 to 1949,[3] announced the church's change of name to Community Church of New York. He explained:

I have left Unitarianism, cut myself off from all denominational connections of every kind, that I may preach a universal, humanistic religion which knows no bounds of any kind, not even Christianity. We have … placed the support of the church on the … basis of free voluntary subscriptions. We have rewritten our covenant, eliminating every last vestige of theology, thus relegating all matters of belief to private individual opinion. … [Any person] is welcome to our church, whether he be rich or poor, black or white, Christian, Jew, Hindu, or Parsee.[1]

In 2019, Community Church of New York, called their first woman to the position of Senior Minister, Rev. Peggy Clarke.

References

  1. ^ a b "Church of Messiah Adopts New Name" (PDF). The New York Times. May 26, 1919.
  2. ^ "To Restore Burned Church" (PDF). The New York Times. September 13, 1919.
  3. ^ a b c "The Early Years". The Community Church of New York. Archived from the original on July 31, 2013. Retrieved April 14, 2020.
  4. ^ a b c d e Dunlap, David W. (2004). From Abyssinian to Zion: A Guide to Manhattan's Houses of Worship. New York: Columbia University Press.
  5. ^ a b c d e Greenleaf, Jonathan (1850). A History of the Churches, of All Denominations, in the City of New York (second ed.). New York: E. French. pp. 369, 373–76.
  6. ^ Channing, William E. (1846). "Unitarian Christianity Most Favorable to Piety". The Works of William E. Channing, D. D. III (sixth complete ed.). Boston: James Munroe and Company. p. 163.
  7. ^ Dewey, Mary E., ed. (1884). Autobiography and Letters of Orville Dewey, D. D. Boston: Roberts Brothers. pp. 75f.
  8. ^ Perris, William (1854). Maps of the City of New York. 5. New York: Perris & Browne. Plate 61 (church is mislabeled "Presbyterian").
  9. ^ Brown, Thomas Allston (1903). A History of the New York Stage: From the First Performance in 1732 to 1901. II. New York: Dodd, Mead and Company. pp. 376–98.

External links

Map of all coordinates, or show using: OpenStreetMap 
Download coordinates as: KML

40°43′29″N 73°59′55″W / 40.72486°N 73.99866°W / 40.72486; -73.99866 (Mercer and Prince Streets) 40°43′46″N 73°59′35″W / 40.72940°N 73.99313°W / 40.72940; -73.99313 (Broadway at Waverly Place) 40°44′51″N 73°58′54″W / 40.74753°N 73.98160°W / 40.74753; -73.98160 (34th Street and Park Avenue)

This page was last edited on 20 August 2021, at 03:48
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