The parish of St. Paul’s, North Andover, MA, was founded as a mission of Grace Church, Lawrence, MA by Augustine Amory in 1881, and the building was erected in 1882. St. Paul’s is located half-way between the old center and the mills, because the church was to serve Episcopalians from the old farms and summer estate of Great Pond Road and from the mills and factory housing of the downtown. One of the founders, Eben Sutton, insisted that the whole cost of the building be raised before construction was begun and he continued to oversee the finances for many years. When the painting and stained glass windows around the alter, gifts of the Sutton family, were installed, the insurance doubled. Phillips Brooks, Rector of Trinity Church, Boston, and Bishop of Massachusetts 1891-93, grew up in North Andover and gave the large; “Presentation of Christ in the Temple”; window in honor of his parents.
In our 130+ years as a parish, devoted service to the church by rectors and parishioners has been extremely important. The Church Fair, now held just before Advent, is a project for the whole parish, a social event and a significant fund raiser. At one point in its long history, the event raised 20% of the parish budget. A warm and friendly welcome awaits visitors and worshippers, as has been true for decades. In addition to the beautiful church, the French Memorial, added in 1893, includes the church office, Sexton’s apartment and space for choir practice.
The Parish Hall, dedicated in 1915, includes a large meeting space with a stage, Sunday School rooms and the church kitchen, an important center for fellowship by the Episcopal Church Women and for parish meals. Construction of the rectory after World War I completed the physical plant and left only the maintenance and preservation of a lovely church to us. In 1988, a new organ was installed by the Andover Organ Company, an example of the generous gifts and continuing commitment of a vibrant parish in a beautiful and historic setting.
Barbara Ann McCahill, Former Parish Historian
The life of St Paul’s is filled with many saints. In the history of the parish, there are about a dozen who stand out as the founding saints. While it might not be correct to say that without them we would not be here, it is correct to say that because of them we are here. This series introduces these saints and their place in history.
Click on the following links to read more about each our history:
William Lawrence – Patron Saint
Reverend Augustus Amory – the Enabler
Horatio Gray—the Seed
John Davis Williams French
General Eben Sutton
James H Davis
Carrie and Cornelia
James B and Rebecca Curwen
Gen. William Dale, Sr MD and William Dale, Jr.
Thomas P Carter and Eben A Baldwin
Thomas Milner, The Shepard Family, Robert Cunningham and Abraham Kershaw
First St Paul’s Meeting Sept 10, 1880
The Body of Saints