History

Sixty years ago, Christ Church began as the dream of a handful of families in rural Ponte Vedra Beach who wanted a place of worship. Over these years, Ponte Vedra has grown and changed, and Christ Church has helped transform this town into a welcoming, generous and joyful community. We have celebrated 60 Christmases and 60 Easters, countless baptisms, confirmations, weddings and funerals. The dream of that handful of families has now grown to a parish with more than 5,500 members.

1955

Christ Episcopal Church becomes a parish, with Reverend Alexander Juhan as Rector.

1973

As a member of the Beaches Ministerial Assoc., Christ Church helps open Pablo Towers, housing for the low-income elderly, in Jacksonville Beach.

1979

563 Members – The Rev. James Cooper is installed as the second Rector of Christ Church.

1983

The Christ Church Foundation is established.

1984

The Foundation awards its first scholarship to a graduating senior at Nease High School.

1985

701 Members – The Beaches Ministerial Association establishes BEAM, the Beaches Emergency Assistance Ministry, and Christ Church begins to provide ongoing financial and volunteer support.

1987

1,160 Members – The Rev. Gerry Walston, Associate Rector, starts youth mission trips to Bahamas, Belize, American Indian reservations and Montreal.

1990

1,972 MembersThe Link child care and after-school programs supported by Christ Church, in conjunction with Episcopal Children’s Services and YMCA, opens in Jacksonville Beach.

1997

3,729 MembersChrist Church is instrumental in establishing Mission House, a ministry to the homeless in Jacksonville Beach, and begins financial and volunteer support.

1998

4,100 MembersFirst visit by church members to Amistad in Bolivia, and Christ Church begins financial support to help build orphanage.

1999

4,428 MembersGodly Play begins at Wolfson Children’s Hospital, through the guidance of Malinda Harris, Christian Formation Director, and Christ Church.

2003

Through the $5 million dollars raised by Christ Church parishioners, St. Francis in the Field is built and becomes an independent parish.

2004

5,684 MembersChrist Church establishes Serenata Beach as a second site worship center.

Christ Church begins Grab-A-Bag ministry to support the food pantry at BEAM and St. Mary’s.

2005

The Rev. Rick Westbury is installed as Christ Church’s third Rector.

Christ Church San Pablo becomes an additional second site worship center.

2008

5,956 MembersChrist Church sponsors Habitat for Humanity, providing $40,000 in funding and nearly 3,000 volunteer hours.

The Christ Church Bookstore opens and donates some of its proceeds to the St. John’s County Learn to Read program.

The dedication and consecration of the new Christ Church Parish Center and contemporary worship space led by the Presiding Bishop, The Most Rev. Dr. Katharine Jefferts Schori.

2009

5,924 MembersThe Beaches Community Healthcare Clinic opens in Jacksonville Beach, with Christ Church as a founding member that will go on to provide continuing financial support.