Our churches and synagogues have played a vital role in our ability to settle and our sense of community we hold so dear here in Delray Beach. Note some of the most historic of religious facilities in our town.
• Greater Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church: The first church organized in Delray Beach, was established in 1896 by Reverend NB Williams. The church displays a permanent exhibit entitled “Black Pioneers of Delray Beach.” The church is located at 40 NW 4th Avenue.
• St. Paul’s African Methodist Episcopal Church: Established in 1897 by African Americans, it is the second oldest church organization in Delray Beach. The church displays exhibits of artifacts from the church and its founders. St. Paul’s is located at 119 NW 5th Avenue.
• Cason United Methodist: the church now known as Cason United Methodist Church was established in 1903 and was initially attended by settlers of European decent. Cason is located at 342 North Swinton Avenue.
• Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church Chapel: Originally called Evangelishe Lutherische Dreienigkeits Gemeinde, this churchwas established in 1904 by Adolf Hoffman et al. The Trinity Lutheran School which was founded in 1948 and is located at 400 North Swinton Avenue.
• St. Paul’s Episcopal Church: In 1904 Missionary Bishop Rt. Rev. William Crane Gray held the first service in the new St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, for settlers of European descent. St. Paul’s is located at 188 South Swinton Avenue.
• St. Matthews Episcopal Church: The African Bahaman Congregation met as early as 1908, with a church erected three years later. The church was rebuilt in 1929 after destruction by the 1926 hurricane. St. Matthew’s is located at 404 SW 3rd Avenue.
• First Presbyterian Church of Delray Beach: The church is “aware of the prominence of our church’s role in this city’s past and cognizant of our role in the life of this community today, we look forward to this significant day in the life of our congregation.” This church, established in 1924 and located at 33 Gleason Street, will be highlighted in an upcoming column.
• Temple Emeth: St. Paul’s Episcopal Church and the 1936 Sandoway House held some of Delray’s first Jewish services. The first synagogue in Delray Beach, Temple Emeth, is established in 1973 and is located at 5780 West Atlantic Avenue.
Plan on attending our religious facilities not only for the traditional services held, but also to meet our neighbors, to learn our history and discover the other great services offered.
Sources: http://www.firstdelray.com, http://www.mydelraybeach.com, http://www.mlfhmuseum.org, http://greatermountolivembc.org/history.htm, http://trinitydelray.org, http://www.stpaulsdelray.org
Marc D. Thompson, owner of VirtuGen, delved into writing and genealogy at a very early age, penning stories, poems, lyrics and family history. Thompson went on to write and research in high school and college, earning a BS degree from Moravian College. He combines traditional genealogical research methods with cutting edge internet methodology, while using multiple computers to produce the fastest, most accurate results. Along with over 25 years of experience, he draws from thousands of techniques to provide detailed results. He has presented genealogical lectures and authored numerous family history books and had his published works appear in Fighting Chance Magazine, Love’s Chance Magazine, Northern Stars Magazine, Offerings, Poetry Motel, Suzerian Enterprises and The Pink Chameleon. Thompson is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists and has founded two Genealogy societies. He was the County Coordinator of the Chatham Co, GA USGenweb site and wrote a monthly genealogy column for Atlantic Avenue Magazine. His published books are offered at http://www.marcdthompson.net/fitness-books/genealogy-books/