The Vidette-Messenger Centennial EditionThe 1936 special edition celebrating Porter County's centennial year . . . .

The following article has been transcribed from the August 18, 1936, issue of The Vidette-Messenger, published in Valparaiso, Indiana. This particular special edition focuses on Porter County's centennial celebration and contains a 94-page compendium of Porter County history up to that time.

Return to the index of articles from The Vidette-Messenger's Porter County Centennial special edition.

Source: The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; August 18, 1936; Volume 10, Section 2, Page 10.


Episcopal Church Stands a Monument To Loyalty of Small Band of Faithful

The Episcopal church in America is the direct descendant of the Church of England. In the establishment of English colonies in America it was usually stipulated that the laws passed by such colonies should conform to the "true Christian faith and religion as now professed in the Established Church." In 1784 a number of clergymen assembled at Brunswick, New Jersey, and adopted a resolution to the effect "that the American church should be independent of all foreign authority, ecclesiastical as well as civil." The adoption of the resolution marked the beginning of the Protestant Episcopal church in the United States. In form of government, the Episcopal church is modeled after that of the Roman Catholic.

Indiana was made a diocese at a comparatively early date and for years was under the Episcopate of Bishop John J. Knickerbocker, of Indianapolis. In his travels over the state he visited Valparaiso, where he found a few members of the faith and urged organization of a permanent church. They were few in numbers and not financially strong, and consequently hesitated to take the step advised by the bishop.

The Episcopal church undertaking in Valparaiso received much of its physical and financial support through the efforts of Mr. and Mrs. Charles H. Parker and other enthusiastic who established a mission here in 1892. Services previous to this were held in the homes of local members, to whose homes were carried a simple improvised altar, that could be carried about.

The baptismal ceremonies were held in the Christian church because this small mission did not have a baptismal fount. The first church was over what is now Wark's hardware store, and there Father L. W. Applegate officiated. Later the mission was located in the rooms over the building now occupied by the First Federal Loan and Savings association on Lincolnway.

Rev. George Moore, of Momence, Ill., was the first priest to officiate here. Mrs. Clara Smith was the first one baptized into the church by him. Services were held in the home of Mrs. J. Seymour Wilcox.

St. Andrew's Episcopal church here was named after St. Andrew's Episcopal church of Chicago, of which Mr. and Mrs. C. H. Parker were members before coming to Valparaiso.

Upon the death of Bishop Knickerbocker the state was divided and Rt. Rev. John Hazen White was made bishop of the northern diocese. He established his see at Michigan City and began an active campaign in the interests of the church. Upon the occasion of a visit to Valparaiso he enlisted the cooperation of Charles H. Parker, J. S. Wilcox, A. W. Barnhart, M. A. Snider, J. C. Rock and a few others for the establishment of a church.

St. Andrew's mission was organized, a hall hired, and Rev. L. W. Applegate was assigned to the parish as a resident priest. In the spring of 1902 the lot at the southeast corner of Franklin and Erie streets was purchased and work was commenced upon a frame building 22x64 feet, with a tower twelve feet square. The building was completed in due time and was formerly dedicated on July 6, 1902. The total investment in the church property was more than $10,000.

Rev. Walter B. Williamson, who succeeded Reverend Applegate, when the latter removed to Gary in 1906, later materially improved the church building by giving it a stucco finish and he also remodeled the rectory, at an expense of $5,000. In 1920 Rev. G. Taylor Griffith assumed charge of the parish and made decided improvements in the church interior and grounds and also in the rectory, costing about $3,500. On account of ill health, Father Griffith removed to Portland, Oregon, where he became chaplain of Good Samaritan hospital. He was succeeded by Rev. J. Worger Slade, under whom further improvements were made to the property, amounting to several thousand dollars. A mission at Hobart, Ind., established by members of St. Andrew's church, is in charge of the pastor of St. Andrew's. The present pastor is Rev. James Hilton.

Other pastors of St. Andrew's have been M. M. Day, Rev. Lenbrooke, C. B. Cromwell, A. E. Pflaum, H. Ward Kepky, and Walter Schroeder.

The First Protestant Episcopal church organization in Valparaiso was formed on June 2, 1861. Bishop Upfold was present at the meeting. The name of the organization was the "Church of the Holy Communion." The membership was small, and during the changes caused by the war and the visitation of death, it soon became extinct. Messrs. Febles and Thompson, lawyers, with their wives, were among the members.

Article transcribed by Steven R. Shook


CSS Template by Rambling Soul