Dutch Reformed Church of Flatbush

Location: 890 Flatbush Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, 11226
Telephone: 718-284-5140
Website: http://www.flatbushchurch.org

Ever since the spot where it now stand was partitioned in 1654 by Governor Peter Stuyvesant, the church has been a testament of Dutch settlement and the religion they brought in New York. Yet, at the same time, it has gone through a very interesting transformation. It was initially made out of wood and in a cross shape. But, then it was rebuilt with stone and became integrated to the education of the youth through Erasmus Hall, the main school building at the time. From then on, it developed in a very “conservative fashion”. During this time, Grace Church and the Second Reformed Church branched out from a mission station of the Church and a daughter church respectfully. These were in response to the interests of African-American and German protestants who were residing in this area during this time.

It wasn’t until the 1970s when the neighborhood received an influx of Hispanic, Caribbean, and African immigration that the church physically changed again. To be inclusive of these communities, they currently offer worship times especially suited for the Hispanic community as well as for the Ghanaian community in addition to general worship times. While it was changing, the church attempted to preserve it roots and was designated by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission in 1979. This is very much evident in its well preserved but old fa├žade as well as its long standing cemetery, which still holds some of its founders. Overall, the Dutch Reformed Church of Flatbush has proven to be a successful paradox in that it has both resisted the wearing down of time and preserved its original Dutch settlers, and it has progressed and is still an integral part of the neighborhood and its new, incoming immigrants.

The church values and suits its new immigrants as shown by the Ghanian Worship and the service in Spanish.

The church values and suits its new immigrants as shown by the Ghanian Worship and the service in Spanish.

The neighborhood's gratitude towards the church was best shown when they came together and helped out the church after a fire that erupted in January.

The neighborhood's gratitude towards the church was best shown when they came together and helped out the church after a fire that erupted in January.

Peter Stuyvesant

It's colonial stone facade is well-maintained.

It's colonial stone facade is well-maintained.

The quaint cemetery within its grounds.

John H. Ditmas was one of the founders of the church rightly buried in its cemetery.

John H. Ditmas was one of the founders of the church rightly buried in its cemetery.

Grave of Jeremiah Lott alongside his wife Lydia Lott. He was another founder of the church.

Grave of Jeremiah Lott alongside his wife Lydia Lott. He was another founder of the church.

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