Two thousand years ago, three Magi traversed a considerable distance following a star which led them to the Christ child. And thus, in a way, began the history of this parish. For we too have sought Christ by following that star. Along the pathway we have experienced many joys, tribulations, sorrows and, yes, accomplishments. The star has remained ever constant and bright as it has led us down the annals of our history and ultimately, we trust, to the place “where our infant Redeemer is laid”. Here is the story of that journey.
Our sojourn began in 1888 when two women of this area had a vision of a Christian presence for this community organized around the Anglican tradition. Their interest ultimately led to the first service being held on the Feast of the Epiphany in 1889, hence the origin of the parish’s name. Subsequently, during the summer of that year, the cornerstone was laid for the Epiphany Chapel and the building was completed and dedicated in January 1897. All this was accomplished with donations from parishes and Advent offerings from children in the Diocese.
From this early beginning a strong commitment to faith and the love of Christ characterized our congregation. Many times He has lent us his aid and guided us along the pathway He would have us follow as our faith has been put to the test.
One of the earlier evidences of this can be seen in the strong determination to rebuild the church when the first structure was suddenly destroyed by fire in 1903. Building commenced in 1904, and by February of 1905 the church had been replaced with the present structure, again with the assistance of our brothers and sisters throughout the Diocese.
It was at this time that the official name of the parish became “The Church of the Epiphany”.
The present set of buildings were completed when the Education Building and covered walkway were added in the early 1960s.
During the very early years, the mission was unable to support resident vicars and thus received clerical support from the Diocese and shared priests with other parishes in the area. Maintaining an adequate membership was always a concern, to the extent that consideration was given to closing the doors in 1926. Eventually, however, we were able to support resident vicars who lived in an adjoining vicarage (no longer owned by the parish). Each one, in his own way, contributed towards our attaining parish status. This was ultimately accomplished in 1972 through the vigorous leadership of our last vicar, Rev. Raymond Cole, a milestone indeed in our journey of following the star. Our first rector, Rev. Dennis Warner, joined us in September 1973 and remained with us until his passing in 2007.
From those early days to the present, Epiphany has witnessed growth in its congregation, Christian education, community and world outreach, diocesan support, and youth programs. The thread that has run so true through our one hundred twenty year history is the love of God as expressed by His son Jesus Christ and a strong faith present in all the generations that have come and gone. It is this love and faith that carry us into the future.