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St. Paul's Episcopal Church celebrates 100 Years

By Staff
special to The Star
Oct. 12, 2002
The 100th anniversary of St. Paul's Episcopal Church of Meridian will be celebrated the weekend of Oct. 19 and 20.
The celebration will kick off the morning of Oct. 19 at 11 with a parish picnic at the Highland Park Carousel. That will be followed by a social at Howard Johnson's Convention Center at 6:30 p.m. featuring a video on the history and people of St. Paul's.
The two-day celebration will conclude Sunday with Holy Eucharist, followed by a reception.
Several former rectors, curates and seminarians, along with numerous descendants of the original parish founders, are expected to attend activities surrounding the observance.
On May 31, 1901, a request to establish a mission was approved by the second bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi, the Right Rev. Hugh Miller Thompson.
The original petition was requested by members of the first Church of the Mediator. Parish status was approved eight months later on Jan. 22, 1902.
Pending the construction of the church building, several churches in the area, including Temple Beth Israel, the Jewish synagogue, kindly offered the use of their facilities to St. Paul's fledgling congregation.
The lot for the present church at 12th street and 23rd avenue in Meridian, originally cost $3,250, and construction costs were $7,450. The cornerstone was laid April 14, 1902, and the first service was held in the new church building on All Saints Day, Nov. 1, 1902.
By 1910, St. Paul's had 296 active members. Today, the parish serves upwards of 500 communicants.
Since its founding, St. Paul's has had an extensive record of involvement in the Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi, producing many priests and several bishops.
The church is known for its active involvement in outreach missions, both locally and abroad.