The area surrounding the Church was originally a part of the Parish of Hampton. Parishioners were served by three Churches – St. Luke’s at Gondola Point (built in 1833), St. Paul’s in Rothesay (built in 1860 as a Presbyterian Church, though Anglican services were held there), and Holy Trinity Church at Hammond River which was destroyed by fire May 18th, 1920. St. Paul’s became an Anglican Church in 1870 and the area Churches formed the Parish of Rothesay. St. Augustine’s had its beginning with the desire of parents to have religious education for their children. Mid-week services and Sunday School were held in private homes.
In 1892, Mr. William H. Hayward donated a lot of land (50’X 100″) at the junction of the Pettingill and Quispamsis Roads. St. Augustine’s Church was built in 1894, as a part of the Parish of Rothesay. It was a small white Church with Gothic-styled windows. It would seat 40/50 people. It was heated by a wood stove and lighted by oil lamps. Electricity was welcomed in the early 1940’s. Hitching barns were located behind the Church for the use of those travelling by carriage or sleigh. St. Augustine’s was consecrated by Archbishop Richardson on September 19th, 1937.
By the 1950’s, the congregation had pretty well outgrown the little Church. Meetings were held and some thought was given to build on the Hampton Road. However, in 1952, the present lot was enlarged by the addition of a piece of land obtained from Mr. and Mrs. Percy Leonard. The small Church was moved across the road to make way for the new foundation. Services continued to be held in the small Church until Christmas of 1954 when the first service was held in the basement of the new building.
The new structure was build in the shape of a cross and had three levels. The nave had seating for about 100/125. Choir pews were on either side of the Chancel and the altar was to the wall in the Sanctuary. The left arm of the cross housed the choir room and the organ room. The right arm was the Sacristy and access to the basement.
The Thanksgiving service on Sunday October 13th, 1957 was the first service held in the new St. Augustine’s Church. The original building (now across the road) was deconsecrated and dismantled. The new St. Augustine’s was dedicated on May 26th, 1958 by the Right Reverend A.H. O’Neil. Later when debts were cleared, the Church was consecrated on June 21st, 1962.
In 1961, there was a change in the Church alignment of Parishes. St. Paul’s became the sole Church in the Parish of Rothesay. St. Luke’s and St. Augustine’s joined with Holy Trinity in 1962 to become the Parish of Hammond River. This continued until 1989 when each of the Churches became independent. St. Augustine’s became the sole Church in the new Parish of Quispamsis.
By 1991, again it was decided more space was needed. An “L” was added. This enlarged the Sanctuary and gave additional seating. The interior was also renovated. This addition provided what in present today – a large conference room and office space on the main level; and a large hall, kitchen and classrooms on the lower level. Bishop Claude Miller held the consecration service on October 1st, 2005.
Over the years, there have been a few services without music. We have been most fortunate in having four ladies from our congregation who have offered generously of their time and talent. May there be many more services at St. Augustine’s.
Submitted by Mr. Lee Bishop