Sunday, June 10, 2012

                                                                                                                June 10, 2012

First Presbyterian Church
1910 Church
Fourth and Cedar

First Presbyterian Church
Spokane, Washington

"The Rev. Thomas G. Watson, a Presbyterian missionary from Waukesha, Wisc., stepped off the train in Spokane Falls, as Spokane was then known, in 1883 to start a new church in the dusty frontier town of 1,500... meeting in various downtown buildings..." (REF 2.)

One of these was the Bank of Spokane Falls.  In 1884 they moved because the  bank needed the office space.  (REF 1.)

Bank of Spokane Falls (REF 1.)

"... a new First Presbyterian Church was dedicated in December 1886 at the corner of Riverside Avenue and Monroe Street.  The cost: $3,200.  Amid a real estate boom, the church was sold in 1889 for $21,000..." (REF 2.)

1886 Church (REF 1,)

"The congregation's first edifice of its own, erected 1886, where the Spokesman- Review building now stands, served the members until early 1889 when it was sold for $21,000 in a booming real estate market.

1890 Church (REF 1.)

"The second building, dedicated Dec. 21, 1890, was located at the south-east corner of Second and Jefferson Streets.  Church officers considered it a temporary place of worship since they envisioned a "magnificent stone church" to be built on an eligible site.

1890 Interior (REF 1.)

"Interior of Second and Jefferson church.  It was fitted out with 535 opera chairs.  The congregation worshipped here until 1910. (REF 1.)

The  new stately stone church that is used today was built  at Fourth and Cedar and  dedicated June 12, 1910. (REF 1.)  

The sanctuary arches around the distinctive exposed organ pipes at the back of the chancel.  Below the pipes are the chairs for the choir.   A large stained glass window is on the wall to the right of the pipes and a decorative screen on the wall to the left. The red draped area of the chancel in the photo below held the bells for the bell ringing choir that was playing to celebrate Easter.  The curved communion rail is below that.  The pews are banked with side aisles.  Large stained glass windowa also are on the east wall on the main floor and the south wall of the balcony. (See bottom photo.) Adjacent to the sanctuary on the west, below the wooden screen, is a room that can be opened for additional seating.

Sanctuary Easter Sunday 2012

East Wall of Sanctuary 2012

East Wall of Sanctuary 2012
(Center Detail)

Balcony 2012

In 1995 an education wing was added that includes a gym. A section of the exterior wall of the 1912 building was left exposed near the entrance to the new wing.   Today the First Presbyterian Church of Spokane serves a congregation of 2000.

Note: In Canada in the year 1925 The United Church of Canada was formed.  All the Methodist and Congregational Churches joined and most of the Presbyterian Churches.  Today there are still a few Presbyterian Churches in Canada, but only one in North Vancouver, St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church.  Suzanne Wilson attended this church for a short period of time and two of her children took piano lessons from the pastor's wife, Mildred Allison.

Thank you: To the ushers and women in the church library for their help.
Photos: Taken on Easter Sunday, April 8, 2012 by SW. 
                 Also from Reference 1. below.
REFERENCE 1: Many Lamps, One Light, A Centennial  History  1883-1983 
                       First Presbyterian Church, Spokane, Washington.
REFERENCE 2: The Spokasman-Review, February 20, 2012, page 5, 'Review Tower, Newspaper's home replaced Presbyterian church'.


God, be with the persecuted Christians through out the world. Amen (SW.)
orld. Amen

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