St. George Parish Church, St. George, Barbados Pocket Guide

St. George's Parish Church

St. George's Parish Church is the oldest ecclesiastical building on the island of Barbados today. This church building located in The Glebe, St. George along with the St. Michael's Cathedral and St. James' Parish Church were the only church buildings to survive the great hurricane that ravaged the island in August of 1831.


There was a church building that predated this current one but that building was completely destroyed by the hurricane of 1780; four years later however, (1784) the church was rebuilt at a cost of six hundred pounds (£600.00) and, today stands proudly as a tribute to the strength and beauty of the traditional building techniques practiced here in Barbados.


No one really knows when the first church was constructed since all of the documentation on the St. George Church was destroyed in the hurricane of 1780. Early church records however, seem to indicate that the original church building actually predated the formation of the parish of St. George itself. You see, the island of Barbados was initially divided into six parishes but later was further partitioned into eleven parishes, with St. George coming out of the parish of St. Michael (one of the original six parishes) in 1641. 


The imposing structure of the St. George Parish Church today features more Georgian inspired architecture with just a few gothic touches, like the buttresses which are present on quite a few of the churches located on the island of Barbados. St. George Parish Church is a large church and quite beautiful to look at but the church also has another claim to fame; inside the church, hanging above the altar is a magnificent resurrection painting entitled 'Rise to Power'. This painting was painted by the renowned American artist, Benjamin West.


The painting was commissioned by the Hon. Henry Frere for the St. George Parish Church.  However, when the painting landed in Barbados, a row between the rector of the church, Rev. John Carter and Mr. Frere prevented the painting from being displayed in the church. Instead it was stored in an outbuilding at the home of Henry Frere on the Lower Estate Plantation in Barbados. The painting remained entombed there for more than thirty years.


Subsequently, as legend has it, a thief who was hiding in the said outbuilding, was so rattled by Jesus' gaze that he punched the eye out of the painting. To date, the eye of the painting still bears the patch that has never been repaired since efforts to have the damage rectified over sixty years ago proved futile. The painting eventually made it into this church in Barbados in 1820, and today is probably one of the most beautiful religious paintings in the world.


St. George Parish Church in Barbados is certainly worth a visit the next time you are travelling around this scenic island.


Sunday - 7:00 am, 8:00 am & 9:15 am


N.B: The Church is open daily between the hours of 8:00 am & 5:00 pm


Contact Information

Telephone (Office)  -  (246) 436-8794
Rectory  - (246) 429-0372
Fax  - (246) 429-1698




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