Detailed timeline

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  • 1885 - St. John's Episcopal Mission in Forestville begun.
  • 1885-1887 - Parish met for worship in Firemen's Hall.
  • 1886 - Sunday School established in January and first Confirmation Class confirmed in March.
  • 1887 - Services moved to Bethesda Swedish Lutheran Church on Academy Street, Forestville.  Dorcas Guild established for women, St. Agnes Guild for girls ages 14 and up.
  • 1899 - James Hart Welch deeded land on Academy Street to the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut on which to erect a church, April 18.
  • 1900 - Ground broken on October 5 for the new church, to be built in "American Gothic " style.
  • 1901 - St. John's Chapel consecrated on June 20 by Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut Bishop Chauncey Brewster.
  • 1916 - Girls Friendly Society formed.
  • 1920 - First legal meeting of St. John's held January 30.  First recognition of St. John's as a separate parish.  Formerly considered a mission under Trinity Episcopal Church in Bristol
  • 1925 - At parish meeting of May 26, 22 parishioners signed an application to become a mission of the Diocese of Connecticut, thereby establishing independent status.
  • 1927 - Parish House formally opened, November 29.
  • 1935 - 110 people attended a banquet in the Parish House to celebrate St. John's 50th Anniversary.
  • 1940 - New electronic organ dedicated, October 13, replacing original foot-pumped organ.
  • 1952 - The Rev. John W. McCann appointed first resident vicar, sharing his time with the Episcopal churches in New Britain and Terryville.  The parish newspaper, St. John's News, begun in November. 
  • 1953 - First telephone installed.  A Ladies Evening Guild and a Young Peoples Fellowship formed.
  • 1954 - Steeple bell, donated by a student at Watkinson School, dedicated, January 3.  Previously, this bell had served the old Watkinson chapel.  On the first Sunday of August, a new Hammond electronic organ was installed. 
  • 1956 - The Rev. Robert B. Doing, Jr., appointed first full-time vicar.  Vicarage at 21 Academy Street acquired.
  • 1958 - Five acres of land purchased on Stafford Avenue in Bristol from the New Britain Water Company for the erection of a new, larger building.
  • 1959 - Father Doing moved into the new split-level vicarage just built at 831 Stafford Avenue, April 11.
  • 1961 - New church/all-purpose building, located at 851 Stafford Avenue in Bristol, dedicated by Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut Bishop John Esquirol, June 11.
  • 1964 - Ground broken for the new educational wing, to be added to the all-purpose building, November 8.
  • 1965 - New educational wing completed and occupied, May 6.
  • 1966 - St. John's Nursery School opened in September, with sessions on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
  • 1968 - New pews, gifts of St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Waterville, installed in April.
  • 1973 - Diocese financial support ends -- St. John's becomes a self-supporting parish in January.  The Rev. George W. Razee, vicar since March 1, 1967, becomes first full-time Rector.
  • 1977 - Mortgage on the 1961 church/all-purpose building burned, March 6.
  • 1981 - Church ceiling insulated and ceiling fans installed.
  • 1982 - Vestibule added to main entrance on west side of church.  Celtic cross from original church on Academy Street refurbished and mounted on new vestibule roof.
  • 1984 - New Baldwin electronic organ dedicated at a special concert on Palm Sunday.

2000-2009 - Decade of Highs and Lows

  • 2001 - New sanctuary built as wing at south side of existing building.
  • 2003-2006 - Conflict between some members of St. John's and the Episcopal Church over issue of ordination of gay bishop in New Hampshire.  
         - Priest and many members left over issue.
         - The Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut helped remaining St. John's members continue God's                mission in Bristol

2010s - Hanging the Rainbow Flag

  • 2013 - After numerous discussions and Parish Meetings, the Vestry makes the decision to hang the Rainbow flag to show that All Are Welcome!