In the year of our Lord, 1918, fifteen neighbors met to form an Episcopal Church in the Park Place area. The meeting was held in the home of Mrs. Minnie Lee Langhammer. Mrs. Langhammer was employed by Park Place Elementary School as Director of the school Cafeteria. She was instrumental in secruing the school as the first meeting place for the newly formed St Paul's Episcopal Church. In 1919, the Reverend G.W.R. Cadman became the first priest-in-charge, and in 1920, services for the church began at Park Place Elementary School. St Paul's Church became a mission in 1923.
In 1924, the first church building which was originally designed for a Community House, was purchased by St Paul's for their first church. The location of the church was 8013 Park Place Blvd. The building was dedicated on September 28, 1924. The cost of the building was $5,000. The first church held services from 1924 through 1947.
In 1925, a military barracks building (Quonset Hut) was purchased from the City of Houston for the first Parish House. In 1942, St. Paul's Mission became a parish.
In that same year, 1942, the beautiful gold plated "Brotherhood Cross" was a gift to the church from Mr. F. Harold Pengelly. The Brotherhood Cross was actually from a Brotherhood of Miners in Pechucha, Mexico, and a gift from them, Mr. Pengelly, and others during wartime when brass and gold were not available in the States. Mr Pengelly once visited St. Paul's, realized the need, and on his return to Mexico, commissioned the Cross. The Cross was carried for the first time at a Christmas Eve Service by parishoner Richard Manuell.
In 1946, a Building Campaign, "Kick-off Dinner" was held in hopes of raising $60,000 to build a new and larger church on Park Place and Colgate Streets in Houston. The architecture of the new St. Paul's Church was to be Gothic in style, modeled off a quaint seventeenth century English Parish Church. It was to be constructed of beautiful Texas Cordova cream shell stone consisting of three units: The Nave, the Educational Building, and a Parish Hall. Groundbreaking ceremonies for the new church were held December 6, 1947.
The new church at 7843 Park Place was dedicated and the new Rector, The Reverend Dorsey Smith, was instituted by Bishop Clinton S. Quin in November of 1948. In the same year, the first Church Rectory was purchased on 7631 Buena Vista, Houston, TX for $16,255. In 1951, the Reverend S. George Parrigin became Rector of St. Paul's.
The 1950's and 1960's were decades of tremendous growth in the church. St. Paul's now had 800 communicates and 400 in church school. The need for expansion was clear.
"First the vision, then the hope, then the faith", Reverend Parrigin wrote to the parish in 1955. This became the vision of the church.
A $200,000 Building Fund Drive was launched at a Loyalty Dinner at Trinity Episcopal Church on Main Street and Holcombe. Some 500 people attended. The first state of the three phase building program was the Bell-Tower and Educational Wing. Ground Breaking Sesrvices were held on April 24, 1960 for the expansion of the existing church building.
In 1964, beautiful stained glass windows mady by the Botz-Meisen Company of Cologne Germany, were installed. This famous firm has received many important commissions including some from the Vatican. The windows were given as memorials and donated by parishioners. The stained glass window above the Alter has become the symbol of the spirit of St. Paul's Church.
In 1983, The Reverend S. George Parrign retired and was named Rector Emeritus. The Reverend Frank Mangum was called to serve as the fourth Rector of St. Paul's Church.
In 1993, Canon Leo Allard along with Reverend Frank Mangum officiated at St. Paul's first bilingual Hispanic/English Eucharist. Reverend Frank Mangum resigned from St. Paul's in 1993 to accept a college ministry in Nacogdoches, Texas.
In 1994, the Reverend James McGill was installed as Rector. In a neighborhood with a growing Hispanic population, Reverend McGill's ability to speak Spanish was very important. Hispanic services were soon a regular part of the Sunday schedule, and in June 1995, the Reverend Ricardo Sotomayor was welcomed into the ministry at St. Paul's as an Associate. It was this time that St. Paul's began to be recognized as St. Paul's/San Pablo Episcopal Church.
St Paul's celebrated their 75th Anniversary with a weekend celebration from October 30th through November 1, 1988. All past and present parishioners were invited to attend. St. Anne's Build sponsored a 75th Anniversary Cross to commemorate the special occasion. It was offered for sale in silver or gold.
Priests of St. Paul/San Pablo Church
Reverend Edward Gomez Vicar Reverend Bill Laucher Vicar Reverend Andrea Polvino Interim Reverend Benjamin I. Long Priest-in-Charge, Rector Reverend Robert W. Wawee Rector Reverend James E. Scott, Jr. Interim Reverend Oscar Huerta-Garcia Assistant Vicar Reverend Ricardo Sotomayor Associate Reverend James McGill Rector Reverend Frank Mangum Rector Reverend John Turner Whaley Assistant Reverend Gary Canion Assistant Reverend S. George Parrigin Rector Reverend Dorsey G. Smith Rector Reverend Edward Cabot Stein Rector Reverend Francis Wingate Hayes, Jr. Vicar Reverend Charles W. Buchanan Vicar Reverend John Byron Vicar Reverend Lawrence L. Brown Vicar Reverend Thomas W. Sumners Vicar Mr. Lawrence L. Brown Seminarian Mr. Michael J. Kippenbrock Seminarian Reverend John E. Shea Vicar Reverend G.W.R. Cadman Vicar
Priests & Deacons Who Served St. Paul/San Pablo Church During Transition Periods
Deacons - Reverend Carol Ann Mills and Reverend Joe M. Mills, Jr. and Reverend Martha Frances.