Church History

"To all Christian People, Know Yee, that I, David Youngs of Southold, Taylor, in consideration of ye sum of five shillings, currant money to me in hand paid, by the persons that have builded a meeting house in ye Oysterponds lower Neck in ye sd Township, doe grant, bargaine and sell unto sd persons interested ... so much land as the said Meeting House taks to stand upon ... this first day of January 1717/19 ... David Youngs"

 

With the above words, written into the town records by the hand of Benjamin Youngs, Town Clerk of Southold, it is seen that the meeting house mentioned was erected in Orient before the end of 1717.  While the new year began in March under the old calendar, under the new style it began the first of January.  How many months the building may have been standing when the deed was drawn are not known; yet undoubtedly this was the first place of worship in the eastern hamlet. 

 

The piece of land deeded by David Youngs was not only very small; it was covered by the structure upon it.  So before sealing the document he adreed that the "sd persons shall have the liberty and privilege of halfe a pole width of land against the east end, and the North side, of ye sd meeting house, the sd persons fencing the same."  As the years went by this land was increased by further purchases and the stipulated fencing, if it was ever placed there, disappeared.

 

From Augustus Griffin, chronicler of Orient's earliest times, we have a description of that first meeting house.  Indeed, Mr. Griffin (1767 - 1866) was one whose lifetime spanned all three of the buildings on this site.  He said of that early one that it was "a singularly constructed affair, about thirty feet square, two stories high, and on top of the second storey was raised another square building ten feet square and nine feet high, and then the finish something like the lower part of a steeple, with an iron spire, which supported a sheet iron figure of a noble game cock, showing the course of the wind, which it continued to do so with unerring precision for a term of ninety years."

 

Although this building appeared "singular" to Augustus Griffin, it had its counterpart in several other meeting houses in the colonies at that time.  Windows being expensive, our meeting house doubtless had few.  They probably were of the casement type with leaded, diamond panes, for sash windows, introduced some places in 1715, were too new for this little community.  Within, we can be sure there was a gallery running around three sides of the second story level, while on the first floor the plain pulpit at the rear was faced right, left, and front by backless benches.  There was no heating arrangement; lighting, when necessary, was by candle; no musical instrument was provided; and no form of decoration or symbol of any kind was used.

 

All avoidance of the latter was in strict keeping with the Puritan tradition, in which religious art  and decoration were considered popish.  Altars were never used and even the word "church" had bad connotations to these people, who had broken with the established Church of England.  Calling themselves religious "societies" they held services in "meeting houses" and adhered to the congregational form of government or rule, being completely independent from any other society of central body.

 

(More to come)

October 17 2018

Thursday, July 26

Men's Fellowship Breakfast - 8 a.m., Sterlington Deli

Building and Grounds Workday - 9 a.m. 

Friday, July 27

AA - 9 a.m. 

Sunday, July 29

Celebration of Worship - 9:30 a.m. Rev. Freeman Palmer preaching

Fellowship Hour - 10:30 a.m.

Church Council - 11:30 a.m.

Monday, July 30

AA - 9 a.m. 

Women's Breakfast Club - Hellenic - 9 a.m. 

Wednesday, August 1

Church BBQ at State Park - 5:00 p.m.

Thursday, August 2

Men's Fellowship Breakfast - 8 a.m., Sterlington Deli

Building and Grounds Workday - 9 a.m. 

Friday,  August 3

AA - 9 a.m.

Saturday,  August 4

Art and Craft Fair - 9-4  (Rain Date - Sunday)

Sunday, August 5

Celebration of Worship - 9:30 a.m

Fellowship Hour - 10:30 a.m.  

Monday, August 6

AA Meeting - 9 a.m.

Women's Breakfast Club, Hellenic, - 9 a.m. 

Thursday, August 9

Men's Fellowship Breakfast - 8 a.m., Sterlington Deli

Building and Grounds workday - 9:00 a.m. 

Friday, August 10

AA - 9 a.m.

Sunday, August 12

Celebration of Worship - 9:30 a.m.

Fellowship Hour - 10:30 a.m.

Monday, August 13

AA Meeting - 9 a.m.

Women's Breakfast Club - Hellenic - 9 a.m.

Thursday, August 16

Men's Fellowship Breakfast - 8 a.m., Sterlington Deli 

Church Workday - 9:00 a.m. 

Friday, August 17

AA Meeting - 9 a.m.  

Sunday,  August 19

Celebration of Worship - 9:30 a.m.  

Fellowship Hour - 10:30 a.m.  

Monday, August 20

AA Meeting - 9 a.m.

Women's Breakfast Club - Hellenic - 9 a.m.

Wednesday, August 22

Music and Worship - 5 p.m. 

Thursday, August 23

Men's Fellowship Breakfast - 8 a.m., Harbour Front Deli

Building and Grounds Workday - 9 a.m.  

Friday, August 24

AA - 9:00 a.m.

Sunday, August 26

Celebration of Worship - 9:30 a.m.

Fellowship Hour - 10:30 a.m.

Church Council - 11:15 a.m.

Monday, August 27

AA Meeting - 9 a.m.

Women's Breakfast Club, Hellenic - 9 a.m. 

 

 

  

  

 

 

 

 

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