Greenwich Churches, CT: Top 10 Most Unique Spots | Stanton House Inn

Christ Church Greenwich on East Putnam Avenue

Americans from other parts of the country sometimes seem to think New Englanders are godless. And while there is a strong agnostic lean here, not all New Englanders are irreligious. There’s just a long history of not wearing our religion on our sleeves.

 

So, if you want to plan your Sunday mornings here, or want to know where to go in the lead up to Christmas, you have plenty of options.

 

The majority of Greenwich churches describe themselves as casual, friendly, and all-affirming. And most feature a more traditional liturgy.

 

Traditional hymns, organ, and praise and worship are all popular church music styles here. Greenwich churches frequently provide community service, faith and work, children’s ministry, and youth group programs.

 

Ready to see your options for churches in Greenwich, CT, to visit? Let’s get into it:

Quick hits

  • Mainline Protestant churches, like the Congregational Churches and Christ Church, are open and affirming to visitors
  • Local Catholic churches welcome visiting Roman Catholics
  • Many local churches are unique for their architecture and historic value, and are worth visiting, even if you’re not religious

A Brief History of Greenwich Churches in CT

Postcard of Lafayette Place, with First Presbyterian Church in the foreground

Greenwich churches are a microcosm of New England in general.

 

Among the various branches of the Christian church, Puritans arrived first, with their brand of Congregationalism. As was the case in most of the English colonies, Protestants of any branch were also welcome.

 

But the arrival of large numbers of Catholics, new arrivals looking to work in the factories here in the 1800s, led to some conflict. And in some cases, the difference between the two groups:

 

  • The Protestant Churches, with smaller numbers of congregants but more money and influence
  • The Catholic Church, with less money, but often ten times as many faithful members

 

Led to confrontations, in some cases violent.

 

Over the following century, though, New Englanders settled on a decent compromise: religion was not allowed in public discourse.

 

The Greenwich CT Churches to visit

Interior of a church on a Monday

So churches exist and so do congregations, that’s just not going to be the first thing you discuss with strangers.

 

Or the eighth topic, for that matter. It’s still a great place to meet locals, though, once you’re there. The churches on the list are very welcoming to newcomers, even if you’re visiting for the first time.

 

Congregational Churches

First Congregational Church in Old Greenwich, CT

Congregationalism was a Christian movement in England from the late 16th to 17th century, focusing on individual congregations’ responsibility and right to determine their own affairs. It was fiercely independent, with no presbyteries or bishops, and all churches were autonomous and independent. Congregationalism arrived in America with Puritan settlers in New England. And here it gained its biggest strength and influence. The Congregational Church is often prominent locations in towns or cities, close to village greens. The Congregational Church was the state religion of Connecticut until 1818, in fact.

 

First Congregational Church

The First Congregational Church of Greenwich, founded in 1665 in what’s now Old Greenwich, CT, is a progressive, open, and affirming congregation. The church has grown over the years, meeting community problems with solutions focused on social justice. In 1960, the church became affiliated with the United Church of Christ. The church’s stone Meetinghouse, dedicated in 1895, was an adaptation of a Norman-Gothic structure built in England in 1100. The building was expanded in 1930 with the June Binney Memorial Parish House and the education wing in 1952.

 

Second Congregational Church

Second Congregational Church in Greenwich, CT, is a historic and beautiful church that is a significant part of the local community. The church, located 183 feet above sea level, occupies one of the most prominent spots in town, down the street from our Greenwich, CT, bed and breakfast. In fact, former occupants of our historic mansion were part of a dynasty of reverends at the church.

 

Stanwich Church

Stanwich Church, a back-country church, has a diverse congregation. The church occupies a beautiful new building and aims to become a rich addition to the life of each congregant, no matter how long their visit. On Sundays, the church offers both traditional and contemporary styles of music at its services.

 

Catholic Churches

Interior of a Catholic Church

The Catholic Church needs no introduction. And the churches built in the 1800s here are quite pretty.

 

Saint Mary’s Church

Saint Mary Parish, a Roman Catholic community in Greenwich, Connecticut, was founded in 1874 by Irish immigrants. The campus consists of a rectory, stone church, parish center, and community. The parish’s first significant event was the dedication of a white frame colonial church in 1879, which seated 775 people and accommodated 200 children. That said, the church was destroyed by fire on May 16, 1900, causing significant damage to the building and the church. The cornerstones for the church and school were laid on September 23, 1900, using Greenwich free stone from local quarries. The interior of this church on Greenwich Avenue is worth poking your head inside.

 

St. Roch’s Church

While the Italian immigrant community founded this congregation, St. Roch Church is a welcoming community. They are an inclusive community of believers drawn together by a common faith in the neighborhood of Chickahominy.

 

Christ Church Greenwich

Church pews, ready for you to pray

Christ Church of Greenwich CT, a landmark in the Putnam Hill Historic District, has been a spiritual home for over 100 years. The church’s historic campus hosts regular Episcopal church services, special events, meetings, concerts, and community support groups. The choirs, which have been performing since 1934, provide an education in vocal techniques and music theory to many locals, including this writer as a boy. The Dogwood Bookstore offers ecumenical books and gifts, and the Lower Hallway showcases 300 years of Anglican worship and community service. Annual events, such as the Crop Walk and Midnight Run, help raise awareness about hunger and provide aid to the homeless. The church also partners with organizations like Neighbor to Neighbor and the Christ Church Nursery School of Greenwich.

 

First United Methodist Church

Young person sitting inside a church

Greenwich first experienced Methodist preaching in 1787, and the first church was built in 1844. Greenwich’s First Methodist Episcopal Church is a Carpenter Gothic structure built for a Methodist congregation founded in 1805. The church, designed to resemble an English Gothic country church, seems a bit out of place today, with commercial development. The current church was built between 1868 and 1869. The congregation attempted a major update in the 1920s but was unable to raise funds. As such, the church retained its country appearance into the modern era as Greenwich grew and gentrified.

 

The First United Methodist Church of Greenwich is committed to fostering a holy consciousness. It works to provide members with opportunities to deepen their love for God and one another in their beautiful community.

 

First Church of Round Hill

Members serve with music and other contributions

The First Church of Round Hill in Greenwich, Connecticut, is a small, welcoming community dedicated to sharing grace, compassion, and inclusion. Established in 1810, the congregation traces its roots back to the Methodist Circuit Riders, who established a regular preaching circuit. The church moved to its present site in 1871 and reopened in 1912. The church was restored in 1929 and added a brick Sunday school wing in 1961. The structure of the church is a classic period piece with a New England Meeting House and is part of the John Street – Round Hill Historic District. The church opens itself to all faiths and is dedicated to peace, justice, and hope.

 

Presbyterian Churches

The Presbyterian Church, one of the earliest Protestant denominations, was founded in the Cleveland area in 1807 and quickly expanded. Presbyterianism arose from the 16th-century Protestant Reformation and the teachings of:

  • John Calvin of Switzerland
  • And John Knox of Scotland

 

First Presbyterian Church of Greenwich

First Presbyterian Church

The First Presbyterian Church of Greenwich, founded in 1881, has a rich history of worship, Christian education, and mission. The church dedicated a sanctuary in 1887 and has had a number of notable ministers and music ministers. The community also offers programs for older youth and adults, such as short- and long-term mission trips, ski trips, and European tours. The church continues to emphasize its mission by empowering lay volunteers, organizing adult mission trips, and providing support to local mission organizations. The church’s dedication to its faith and mission continues to motivate its members today.

 

First Presbyterian Church of Stamford, AKA “The Fish Church”

The First Presbyterian Church in Stamford, Connecticut, is a national historic landmark known for its distinctive fish-shaped design. Built in 1958, it has over 20,000 stained-glass windows depicting the Crucifixion and Resurrection. The church also has a multi-purpose room called Fellowship Hall, over 100 stones from historical sites, and a 56-bell carillon. Wallace K. Harrison designed the church, which had a membership of more than 1,500 after WWII. The church’s distinctive architecture and stained-glass windows make it a popular tourist attraction. Visitors can attend a Sunday worship service and have coffee in the lounge.

 

Plan the rest of your Sunday with more things to do in Greenwich, CT

Finish planning your Sunday morning with a trip to one of the best breakfast places in Greenwich, CT, for a little post-service brunch.

 

Then, be sure to peruse the lengthy list of things to do in Greenwich, CT. You can spend the afternoon doing anything from visiting museums, hiking, or hitting the beach.

 

We hope you enjoy your time in our hometown!

 

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