Episcopal Church

Drawing of a cross
Picture by Kaisa Simon

Without the Episcopal Church, miners would have been homesick. Many miners were from Cornwall or Whales in England and church was important to them. Reverand Hoge moved to Ouray in 1877 to be the new priest. He went around to saloons and pulled his gun out and said, “We’re having church, so come now!” Before the church was built, services were held in Ouray County offices until February 1880. In 1879, the corner stones were laid. The church was supposed to be really big but the miners could not raise enough money, so the church now was only supposed to be the basement. It was made of native stone, and they wanted it to look like a miniature church of England. In 1887 the Solid Mooldoon Newspaper announced the Episcopal Church had a new bell. To get it, they raised funds like we do today. In 1973 the church was assigned a new permanent priest instead of a traveling one they had had for many years. St. Johns Episcopal Church celebrated their 100th anniversary in 1977 and built the parish hall next door. It is made of native stone too. From 1989-1999, members of the congregation donated the cost of creating new windows. There are 18 beautiful stained glass windows made to look like different pictures of Ouray. One has mountains. Another has wildlife. The windows make you feel like the church is very special. St. Johns Episcopal Church is the oldest church in Ouray still in it’s original building.

by Bailey Kersen and Malori Trujillo

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