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2085 Union Rd, West Seneca, NY 14224
A special fund drive in 1905 raised $1, 000 and allowed building plans to proceed. Ground was broken at the purchased building site where our parking lot is now located. A year later a dedication service was conducted by Rev. J. Stitt of the Southside Presbyterian Church. On June 19, 1910, by unanimous vote of the congregation, it was reorganized as a Presbyterian church, and the name was officially changed on February 15, 1911, to First Presbyterian Church of Gardenville. Rev. Stitt served as supply pastor and was paid by each of the elders who subscribed $1 per week, a total of $3 per service. The New York Central Railroad had made available Mr. Klug's house on Clinton Street for $1.00. It was purchased by the church and moved to the south side of the church property. After remodeling, Rev. John McCreery moved his family to the lower flat of this house when he became the first full-time pastor in 1912. The upper flat was used for Sunday school rooms, meetings and suppers. After Rev. McCreery built his own home at 89 Orchard Avenue in 1914. The Klug house was sold and moved to Orchard Avenue where it is now the residence of the Richard Labby family. A dedication service was held on October 18, 1964, and was attended by over 300 individuals. Keys to the new sanctuary were presented to the Pastor, Rev. Edgar T. DeGraff. A Memorial Fund, set up to help supply furnishings, is still functioning. The total cost of the new church building and equipment was $132, 118. The ensuing years brought a time of rapid growth and change to the entire area. Gardenville became part of the Town of West Seneca. Extensive housing developments brought many new members to First Presbyterian Church. However, indicative of a more transitory society, many longtime members moved to other locations. Visually our church took on a new look when Union Road became a four-lane highway in 1978-1979. During the following year the church's parking lot was expanded south to Kron Avenue. In the 1980s donations of labor, love, money and memorial gifts made possible major renovations of church school rooms, dining room and kitchen, nursery, library/meeting room, pastor's study, secretary's office and a new entryway to Lischer Hall through the stage area. Many energy-saving measures were incorporated throughout the buildings and a new furnace was installed. As has been evident throughout its history, this church has always maintained a strong emphasis on its Christian Education programs. Church school classes were held each Sunday during worship services for children from age 2 through Senior High School. In 1981, Rev. Erik Spencer was called as pastor. Under his guidance, there was a very active Youth Fellowship, a Youth Club, Kerygma adult Bible class, an Adult Fellowship group and plans for a Young Adult Group. Our church also accepted an active role in the West Seneca Community of Churches. Rev. Spencer left our church in July 1990. Rev. Dorothy Franklin was hired in July 1990 as our interim pastor. On February 2, 1992, Rev. Elizabeth S. Hall, known as Betsey, was called as our pastor. Under her guidance, much was accomplished. Several bible study classes were formed and a senior luncheon group, the Young at Heart, was started. Lischer Hall was opened to various community groups and our youth group was very active. The time of Faith Education was changed to follow the worship service, enabling teachers and children to participate in the entire worship service. During the Christmas 1994 holiday, several adults and older youth made a mission trip to Georgia. Craft shows and rummage sales were held to raise money for missions. Members began to participate in the Interfaith Hospitality Network, providing food and shelter to those in need. On November 18, 2001 Rev. Debra Wright was ordained and installed as the new Pastor. Since her arrival Pastor Deb has helped us gain
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