Carmel Church was sponsored by Abington Presbyterian Church.
The first church service was held on October 6, 1872 at 3:00 p.m., in a hall above the stables of Wood’s Tavern, with an attendance of 70. Sunday school classes were held in the same location a week later. There are some indications that Presbyterian church and Sunday school work in the Edge Hill Area may have started 20 or more years prior to the recognized 1872 date.
THE ORGANIZATION OF CARMEL CHURCH
In 1875, Abington Presbyterian Church took action at a congregational meeting to purchase a lot for $300 on which to build a chapel at a cost not to exceed $2,800. The first church building was constructed at the corner of Mt Carmel Avenue and Edge Hill Road, and dedicated on February 15, 1876.
The formal organization of Carmel Presbyterian Church took place on February 15, 1882, with 26 charter members. Title to the church property was transferred from Abington Church to Carmel on April 24, 1882.
The first sanctuary was constructed in 1894-1895 and dedicated on January 26, 1896. A treasured part of Carmel’s history is the original Communion table from the 1894 sanctuary. It is still used on special occasions.
By 1924 church membership had grown to 662 and the church school was 825. The old building was torn down and a new sanctuary started in the winter of 1924-25.
Carmel membership continued to grow as the surrounding communities were developed. The highest church membership reported for Carmel was 2256 in 1952. The corresponding high figure for the church school was 1816 in 1949. It was determined that further building expansion was necessary. A new administration and church school building was constructed, dedicated on October 27, 1957.
Carmel’s Role in the Organization of Other Churches
Just as Carmel was the fruit of much labor by the Abington congregation, Carmel was instrumental in the development of other churches in the area. Carmel nurtured the Roslyn Union Chapel starting in 1914, until it was approved as an independent congregation in May 1923. Carmel’s Associate Minister, the Rev. J. Warren Kauffmann was installed as the pastor of Roslyn Presbyterian Church in September of that year.
In early 1950 Carmel sponsored a mission Sunday School in the Sunnybrook-Oreland section. By December 1950 the organization of the Oreland Presbyterian Church was completed and construction of a church building had begun.
In 2007 Carmel celebrated 125 years of active ministry in the Glenside area and beyond. Upcoming in 2022 will be our 140-year anniversary.
We invite you to join us in God’s service!