The Second Building of St. George's Church

King Henry VIII and the History of Anglicanism

Anglicanism is the third most common branch of Christianity throughout the world. It was developed during the reign of King Henry VIII, who through the Act of Supremacy of 1534, made himself the “supreme head” of the Church of England, thereby separating himself and his country from Roman Catholicism and from the control of the papacy.

This separation was primarily motivated by King Henry’s quest for a male heir and the Pope’s refusal to grant the king a divorce. As this reformation was inspired by political reasoning as opposed to theological, the establishment of the Church of England remained almost fully Catholic with the exception of loyalty to Rome.

Though Anglicanism remains tied to the Church of England, there is currently no international voice (such as the Pope of Roman Catholicism) for this community. Instead, this branch of Christianity is characterized by autonomous parishes throughout the world and by significant freedom and diversity within the bounds of scripture, reason, and tradition.

History of St. George’s Church

St. George’s Episcopal / Anglican Church is the oldest church in Flushing, New York, and one of the oldest in New York State (over 300 years!). It was originally organized as a mission of the Church of England by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts with its first meeting held in 1702. Sixty years later, in 1761, King George III granted a charter to this church, officially recognizing St. George’s as a parish of the Church of England.

Timeline of St. George’s Episcopal Church

History of St. George’s Episcopal on Dipity.


A Postage Stamp Celebrating Religious Freedom

The origin of St. George’s was only possible as a result of the Flushing Remonstrance of 1657, an incredibly significant religious document that paved the path for greater acceptance of different religions in Flushing and throughout the United States.

Within the 300 plus years of its existence, St. George’s has experienced three physical transformations. The first church building was originally built without a bell or steeple in 1746. Because of a certain John Aspinwall’s generous donation, the second church was built in 1821 with a steeple and bell. Finally, the third church was built in 1854, which is the church we see today. This structure has been standing strong for over 150 years.

Within these 300 years in Flushing, St. George’s physical structure has not been the only thing to drastically change for this congregation. The demographics of Flushing have also undergone significant transformation. As Flushing experienced influxes of different ethnic groups, the membership population of St. George’s Church has changed as well. As a result, Chinese and Spanish services were instated in 1988 and 1993, respectively, allowing the Anglican faith to be practiced in various native tongues.

Recently, this institution was hit by a severe storm that destroyed the Church’s 45-foot steeple, but regardless, it is still standing strong on the one of the busiest streets in Flushing.

Entrance Doors of St. George's Church

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