History of the Church

Stowe_Community_Church2

Stowe Community Church is located in the heart of Stowe, a classic New England village in the Green Mountains of central Vermont. Stowe is a world-renowned four-season resort community, and therefore draws people from many different places and denominations. The town of Stowe is 73 square miles and was chartered in 1763.

In 1818, a plot of land was obtained for the erection of a building to be used as a church for all religious groups and as a town house for various civic meetings. For more than forty years numerous denominational societies worshipped in this common church building until they erected their individual churches. The Congregationalists, organized in 1818, built their church in 1839. The Methodists built their church in 1841.

The Universalists, organized in 1830, secured title to the land, moved the town house building to a new location, and on this site built a new church of New England colonial style. It was completed in 1863 at a cost of $12,000. An organ of W.B. Simmons style was bought in Boston and installed in the balcony in 1864, costing an additional $1,700.

In 1918 the three existing religious groups along with members of the Baptist society, recognized the need for a more cooperative effort. It was decided to federate and hold joint services with a single minister. In 1920 the churches united, dissolved their individual societies, and formed the Stowe Community Church. The Universalist Church was kept as the best edifice and the Congregational Parsonage (circa 1840) was retained as the residence for the minister. Thus, the Stowe Community Church became one of the first non-denominational churches in the United States.