St. Stephen's Church
St. Stephen's Church
St. Stephen's Anglican Church was built in 1836 just five years after the great hurricane ravaged the island of Barbados in the year 1831. When this church was constructed, many of the churches on the island that had been destroyed by the hurricane had not been rebuilt as yet. In fact, it was recorded that St. Stephen's Church was constructed at a cost of eight hundred and sixty two pounds (£862.00) with part of the funding for the church’s construction coming from the Hurricane Subscription Fund, which was set up for the expressed purpose of rebuilding and restoring the destroyed and damaged churches on the island. Curiously, no clear reason was given as to why monies from this fund were used for the construction of this church.
In any case the St. Stephen's Church was built with its cornerstone being laid by the Bishop William Hart Coleridge at a ceremony that was held on 28th January, 1836 with the Bishop of Jamaica, the Rt. Rev. Christopher Lipscomb, also in attendance. Both bishops also took part in a similar ceremony held at the building site of the St. Lucy Parish Church earlier that same week in Barbados' northern parish of St. Lucy. George Drayton donated the land on which this 'new' Barbadian church was constructed.
St. Stephen’s Church is located in Black Rock, St. Michael on the island of Barbados. The church in fact has a prominent spot, sited atop a slight incline just off the Black Rock Main Road. This church is sited in such a position that it seems to preside over the environs of the St. Michael community which it steadfastly serves. Even the church’s shaded graveyard is perched on the side of this gentle slope and is clearly visible from the main road.
St. Stephen's Church is not a grand church by any means, measuring approximately twenty-one hundred square feet (2100 sq. ft.). Yet this church boasts the same traditional architectural features of many of the other churches in existence on the island of Barbados. However, quite a bit later the church underwent an extension to the eastern side of the building. This renovation was completed using decorative concrete blocks instead of the traditional coral stone. This might just have been an economical alternative since coral stone has progressively become an expensive building material here on the island of Barbados.
St. Stephen's Church is situated just on the outskirts of Barbados' capital city of Bridgetown and is ideally located in this suburban neighbourhood, where it caters to the religious needs of its dedicated congregation.
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