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Sunday Morning Worship

  8:00 a.m. Rite I

10:00 a.m. Rite II,
followed by coffee hour

Wednesday

7:00 p.m. Healing Eucharist
followed by Faith Study

 

A Brief History of St. John's Episcopal Church

The first service in Rockville was held on the afternoon of Sunday, May 7, 1855 at the Rockville Hotel Hall by the Rev. Enoch Huntington, Rector of the Broad Brook Parish of Grace Church.

The son of the Rev. Enoch Huntington, the Rev. John T. Huntington who was now ordained and in charge of a Hartford Parish took the lead in 1867 in sending missionary lay readers to Rockville from his own parish, from Trinity College and from Berkeley Divinity School. Services at this time were conducted in the upstairs hall of the Sears block on Market St. and later in the Town Hall and finally in the First Evangelical Church on West Main St.

Original churchIn 1872 the Parish was granted an organization by the Diocesan Convention of that year. The Rev. Harlow Ruggles Whitlock was appointed as first Rector of the parish and he began his work on June 14, 1873. It was not until October 2, 1874 that the cornerstone for a parish was laid at the corner nearest the intersection of Talcott and Ellington Avenues in Rockville. The opening and dedication service was held on December 22, 1874 with Bishop Williams preaching. The founding fathers made a very wise choice in selecting the location of the church and rectory in “a fine residentialsection, with no danger of encroachments from industry to mar the Sabbath peace”.

The Rectory was built in 1895. Later the choir was vested and a new organ installed. On May 30, 1905, the Consecration of the Church and the Dedication of the Rectory took place by the Bishop of the Diocese under the Rectorship of the Rev. James Francis George. On March 1, 1924, the Rev. Henry B. Olmstead began his long and fruitful ministry here, until he retired as Rector in 1950.

In April of 1955, while the Rev. Maurice Foulkes was Rector, the congregation embarked on a fund-raising canvass to expand its program and facilities. The Building Committee was reactivated and the present Parish House was soon built in the new campus location on Hartford Turnpike.

In November of 1964 it was voted on to proceed with plans to build a new church adjacent to the Parish House. The Rev. James Grant guided the church through the building process and in February of 1968, the first service was conducted in the new church. It was approved in December of 1968 to build a new rectory on the north side of the Parish House, which was completed in September of 1969. The Rev. Robert Wellner was Rector of St. John's from 1969 to 1988. The Rev. James Kellaway came to our parish in 1988, and was Rector until 2008.

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