Sunday, June 12, 2011

                                                                                                                   August 28, 2011

9004 N. Country  Homes Blvd.

First Church of the Nazarene
Spokane, Washington

"The Church of the Nazarene is an evangelical Christian denominationthat emerged from the 19th-century Holiness movement in North America. With its members colloquially referred to as Nazarenes, it is the largestWesleyan-holiness denomination in the world.[1][2] At the end of September 2014, the Church of the Nazarene had 2,295,106 members in 29,395 churches in 159 different "world areas".[3] The Church of the Nazarene uses "world area" to describe countries and areas that are a part of a country, but may be known by a different name. More than 20 of the denomination's 159 world areas fall into this category, such as Guam, a U.S. territory on the Asia-Pacific Region."
 (Link 1.)

Spokane First Church of the Nazarene
Sanctuary 2011

"Spokane First Church of the Nazarene started in 1902.  (10 acres was purchased in Northern Mead farm area of Spokane, 9004 Country Homes Blvd.)  Construction began on the current building in 1973, at which point the organ was installed.

"The Church offers both contemporary and traditional services Sunday morning, as well as ministry groups and activities for all ages.

"The Church of the Nazarene is the largest denomination in the Wesleyan-Armenian theological tradition."  (Reference.)

1914 Wurlitzer Pipe Organ, 2011

(To see a video for the church organist playing the music planned for Easter go to "You Tube, Wurlitzer-Spokane Church Organ" or use Link #4.)

"Our historic theatre pipe organ, originally from Seattle's Liberty Theater, is Wurlitzer Opus 42 from 1914, the 42nd organ made by the factory.  It consisted of Trumpet, StringII, Vox Humana, Octave Coupler and Tremulant.

"Declared by Farny Wurlitzer, president of the company, to be the instrument that put Wurlitzer on the map as the major theatre organ builder, Opus 42 became famous as a West Coast demonstration installation for prospective buyers.

"The theatre,  a 2,100-seat modern movie palace(The Liberty Theater  in Seattle)-rather than a converted vaudeville or stage theater-was so popular that crowds lined up for three blocks.  Located at First and Pike in downtown Seattle, it enjoyed easy access to trolley lines.

"The organ was used regularly until 1929, when talkies came in.  It was maintained until 1935...In 1955, the building was slated to be demolished, so
Dr. R. byard Fritts, professor of organ at Pacific Lutheran University (PLU) bought the organ... removed it and installed in the PLU Gymnasium, where it was used for basketball games, religious convocations and other events.

"The organ remained at Pacific Lutheran University until 1973, when Spokane First Church of the Nazarene was looking for a suitable pip organ for its new building, then under construction.  PLU wanted to part with the organ in favor of a classical instrument more suited to teaching and literature, so they sold it to the church for $5000." (Reference.)

The largest of the organ pipes is 3 feet square and 35 feet long.  Special effects include:bird, train, and boat whistles, cow bell, and fire gong. (Link 3.)

"The Spokane First Nazarene Chapter of the American Theatre Organ Society was founded in 2007 to share this historic instrument with community and church members."  At quarterly chapter meetings members can play the instrument. (Reference.)
Thank You: To members of the congregation for the tour of the church and to the church organist for a short but thrilling concert on the organ.
Note: Blog Post was update 2/11/2016 due to copy loss.
Photos: Taken in April 2011 by SW.
Reference: Spokane First Nazarene Theatre Organ Society pamphlet.
Link 2:
Link 3:

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