January 19 2014 4th Annual Chili Bowl
1955 (JANUARY 2): The first union meeting of the Metropolitan Presbyterian Church and Eastern Presbyterian Church was held. To their credit they had rejected the solution of leaving the city and chose instead the challenge of remaining in the inner city.
1955 (JANUARY 9): After 4 years of debate and study, the Metropolitan Presbyterian Church and the Eastern Presbyterian Church merged and took the name “The Capitol Hill Presbyterian Church.” The name they adopted had historical roots (it was the name first used in 1864 until it was changed in 1869 to Metropolitan Presbyterian Church). There remained the difficult question of which of the two Church buildings would be retained and which sold. The merged congregations asked Presbytery to appoint a tribunal to decide the issue. After careful survey, the tribunal recommended retaining the Metropolitan building because of its larger floor spaces and selling the Eastern Presbyterian Church property.
1865 (JANUARY 11): Dr. Gurley of NY Avenue Presbyterian Church preaches at the dedication of the first frame-built Chapel (sermon text Psalms from 132; 133; 134)
1864 (FEBRUARY 28): 35 residents of Capitol Hill met with Rev. John Chester in a small building on the corner of First and Carroll Streets, SE to begin the process of organizing a Presbyterian Congregation. Rev. Chester preached on the text of Genesis Chapter 7, verse 16.
1865 (FEBRUARY 12): The Capitol Hill Presbyterian congregation worshiped for the first time in a wooden chapel which was constructed on the lot the congregation had purchased at 4th and B Streets SE. This chapel was constructed in New Jersey, brought down the river on a barge and put together on the lot on which the present church now stands.
1869 (FEBRUARY 7): The cornerstone of the Metropolitan Presbyterian Church building was laid at the lot at Fourth and B Street, SE. – now Independence Ave. (In November 13, 1868, the Church changed its name from Capitol Hill Presbyterian to “Metropolitan Presbyterian” in order to meet the Metropolitan Church Committee’s conditions for donating their funds for the new Church building.)
March 15, 1914 – The Session approved using the top of the “second” communion table (a piece of Italian marble for a memorial tablet and ordered that it be placed in the Church in connection with semi-centennial services.
1864 (APRIL 11) – On this date the Capitol Hill Presbyterian Church moved to the old market house and public school at 3rd and A Streets, SE (the present site of Saint Mark’s Episcopal Church); the congregation was organized by the Presbytery of the Potomac with 34 members; and Rev. John Chester was installed as the first pastor.
1868 (APRIL 10) – Laid the foundation of Metropolitan Church
1871 (APRIL 2) – On this date the Metropolitan Presbyterian Church building was sufficiently completed for the congregation to hold Sunday services on its first floor. Work that still needed to be done included installing staircases to the upper chamber, purchasing sanctuary furnishings and completing the tower.
1914 (APRIL 12-16) – On these dates the Metropolitan Presbyterian Church celebrated its Semi-Centennial. As part of the celebrations the marble top of the Church’s second communion table, engraved to commemorate the service of Rev. Dr. Chester, was unveiled; and Rev. Dr. Luccock (Pastor of MPC from 1894-1903) spoke on the topic “A Complete Half-Century.”
1984 (APRIL 13) – On this date the Capitol Hill Presbyterian Church attic was struck by lighting and a fire broke out. Fortunately, Don Huff, a homeless man who had been allowed to stay in the Church in bad weather, was nearby and saw the strike. He immediately used a public phone to call the fire department, the fire trucks arrived quickly and the building was saved. About $300,000 damage was done to the roof, attic, and sanctuary ceiling. The congregation met in the Fellowship Hall for a year until the building was repaired. The Session used the insurance settlement to repair the roof and attic. In addition, the sanctuary was air conditioned, the seating pattern was improved and the chancel was redesigned by Dudley Brown.
May 5-9 – Chapel open for donations; May 10 – Sidewalk Sale;
May 17 Sesquicentennial Dinner; May 18- Anniversary Sunday and Anniversary Offering;
May 14, 1868 – The Capitol Hill Presbyterian Trustees received a document setting forth the offer by the General Assembly of the United States (old School) to turn over the property and funds of a proposed metropolitan Church amounting to some $25,000 provided the funds were to be devoted to the erection of a building on Capitol Hill and the previous plan enlarged sufficiently to furnish a sanctuary of 60-90 feet and to change the Church name to “Metropolitan Presbyterian Church.”
May 18, 1977 – The Session set in motion the Washington Seminar Center. Grants were requested and received from General Assembly ($11,700), Synod ($2300), and Presbytery ($4300). The Washington Seminar Center was and continues to be successful and the grants were repaid to the contributing agencies.
May 19, 1875 – Eastern Church is organized
May 20, 1864 – The Capitol Hill Presbyterian Congregation elected a committee to purchase a lot and erect a church building. Subsequently a lot (90 by 96 feet) was located and purchased for $2,200 at the corner of Fourth and B Streets, SE. A newspaper (the Daily Interlligencer (Date February 13, 1865) reported that in order to stay debt free the committee decided that the congregation should first erect a chapel rather than a large church building. A prefabricated wooden chapel (30 feet by 50 feet) was purchased for $4000 and was erected February 12, 1865.
June 1864/August 1864 – The Congregation received permission from the Commissioner of Public Buildings to use a room on the first floor of the House wing of the Capitol as a place of worship while Congress was adjourned. When Congress returned, the congregation returned to the Market House.
June 20, 1954 – The congregations of Metropolitan Presbyterian Church and Eastern Presbyterian voted to merge and again took the name “Capitol Hill Presbyterian Church. It was decided to keep the Church at 4th and Independence SE and sell the Church on Stanton square.
July 29, 1873 – Articles of Incorporation of Metropolitan Church
August 21, 1871 – The congregation moved permanently in to the new building using the first floor for Sunday services (the stairs to the second floor were not installed) and the Trustees authorized the sale of the wooden chapel.
September 25, 1866 – the Trustees appointed a Building Committee to make plans for a permanent building. The Trustees authorized Rev. Chester to publish a pamphlet to use to raise funds.
October 4 Books of the Bible Dinners Stewardship program launched
October 4, 1910 – Dr. Chester died and in November 1910 the Session recommended that the Congregation authorize the purchase and place a suitable tablet in the Church commerating the work of Dr. Chester.
October 23, 1864 – Baptism of Mrs. Somerville Robertson and her son David MacKenzie Robertson in the Capitol
November November 30 – 5th Sunday Worship
November 13, 1868 – the congregation met and approved the terms of the General Assembly and Architect Emil Friedrich, a local architect, was engaged to design a plan for a larger Church Building as required by the agreement.
December Advent and Christmas
December 8, 1872 – Dedication of Metropolitan Church. Among the guests at the dedication was President Grant.
Other activities to be added.