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Today in the Mission Yearbook

New Orleans congregation celebrates 100 years of international mission


St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church has long supported mission activities world

October 18, 2017

What began as the St. Charles Avenue Branch of the First Presbyterian Church, renamed St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church (SCAPC) in 1920, has had a strong commitment to global ministries for more than a century.

In September, the church held a month-long celebration and produced a commemorative book to focus on past and present mission work to inspire SCAPC members to even greater efforts to serve Jesus Christ worldwide. Photographs and documents from the Presbyterian Historical Society and SCAPC’s own collection appeared on display at the church, highlighting international mission activities and projects over the years.

The celebration culminated in a dinner on Sept. 27 featuring speakers, a video presentation and Brazilian food to pay tribute to the congregation’s first overseas mission, established in 1917.

A special offering was taken to provide for an expanded program of global ministries.

In 1905, the First Presbyterian Church began an uptown afternoon Sunday school as a mission project. This mission was led by Rowena McMillan and held at a private school for girls. The next year the afternoon Sunday school moved to a residence purchased by First Presbyterian Church.

The afternoon Sunday school grew into regular worship services at the St. Charles Avenue Branch of the First Presbyterian Church. In 1917 the Branch Church called Dr. John Samuel Land, a recent graduate of Columbia Seminary, as its first full-time pastor. That year, at the encouragement of Mr. and Mrs. William B. Bloomfield, members and leaders of the Branch began to support mission efforts around the world, first in Brazil.

In 1918, the congregation began supporting missionaries in China and Korea. Mexico was added in 1929 and, over the past 100 years, SCAPC has supported mission projects and more than 50 mission co-workers in more than 20 countries, including Argentina, Armenia, Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Congo/Zaire, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Ghana, Guatemala, Kenya, Korea, Lesotho, Malawi, Mexico, Netherlands, Pakistan, Philippines, Somalia, South Sudan, Ukraine and Vietnam.

Dr. Land served as the congregation’s pastor until 1959.

Henrietta Augustus Harris and John Geiser III, Special to Presbyterian News Service

Today’s Focus:  St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church in New Orleans

Let us join in prayer for:

St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church Staff

Donald R. Frampton, Senior Pastor
Sarah Chancellor-Watson, Associate Pastor
Steven B. Blackmon, Director of Music and Organist
Tom Paine, Parish Associate for Pastoral Care
Michele Murphy, Director of Christian Education
Andy Fox, Director of Youth and Young Adults
Wayne C. Willcox, Director of Administration
Caroline Cottingham, RHINO Ministry Director
Genny Hagler, Young Adults Coordinator
Kim Bauer, Special Publications Coordinator
Bonnie Shoemaker, Assistant to Senior Pastor and Funeral Coordinator
Hallie Boh, Web and Regular Publications Coordinator

PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff

Malinda Spencer, PMA
Alex Spoelker, PMA

Let us pray:

God of grace, we thank you for the joy of serving you by serving others. Continue to open our hearts to the needs around us, and may we show our concern with hearts and hands, so that all your children may be showered with your love. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Daily Readings

Morning Psalms 15; 147:1-11
First Reading Jeremiah 37:3-21
Second Reading 1 Corinthians 14:13-25
Gospel Reading Matthew 10:24-33
Evening Psalms 48; 4