History of St. Michael's Episcopal Church
Early in the year 1948, the Episcopal Churchmen’s Association of Mobile, having made a study as to the feasibility of establishing and Episcopal Mission in the town of Chickasaw, called a meeting on July 8, 1949 of interested persons in the area to consider the prospects for a successful Mission. It was agreed at the meeting that a Mission should be organized.
The Organizational meeting was called on July 20, 1948. Thirty-two persons were present, and the Mission was organized in accordance with the Canons and Constitution of the Episcopal Church in the Diocese of Alabama. The name St. Michael’s was adopted at this meeting.
The Reverend Francis B. Wakefield of the All Saints Church acted as Ministerial Advisor at the organizational meetings and throughout the establishment of the Mission.
On July 27, 1948, the first services was held with an Altar borrowed from All Saints’ Church Sunday School, a pump organ borrowed from St. Pau’s Church, chairs from Southern Kraft Company, altar appointments loaded and donated in the Navy Barracks Building No. 5, through the courtesy of Gulf Shipbuilding Company. The present owner, Roberts and Long Construction Co. Inc., have continued to allow the use of the building free of rent, and all services were held there through March 26, 1950.
Services have been held continuously every Sunday since organization by the help of the Mobile Clergy and Layreaders. The first Confirmation was by Bishop Carpenter on December 12th, 1948 when 11 people were confirmed.
At a meeting of the Congregation on August 27th, 1948, it was agreed to purchase a lot on Grant Street for the erection of a Church building. St. Michaels was officially admitted as an Organized Mission by the Executive Council, on September 7th 1948.
The Congregation voted in November 1948, to purchase an Army Chapel located at Camp Shelby, Mississippi, to be dismantled, moved to Chickasaw and then erected to be used as a permanent Church Building. After a campaign to raise funds had been launched the members voted to proceed with the building plans, on May 20th, 1949.
On August 24th 1949, the foundation was reported complete and ready for erection of Church the building, and by October 10th, 1949 the moving of the building to the site on Grant Street was complete. When obligations were not fulfilled by the contractor it was voted by the Trustees, on November 16th, 1949, to proceed with completion of the building program with hired workmen and volunteers.
Under Mr. George W. Cumming’s capable direction, and through the untiring zeal and faithfulness of the Episcopalians of Chickasaw in their determination to build a house of prayer to the Glory of God, in Chickasaw, St. Michael’s was Consecrated on April 2, 1950.
Ministers who have served the congregation at St. Michael’s Episcopal Church in Chickasaw since the Church was completed in 1950 are:
1951 Rev. David Holmes Irving
1954 Rev Willis C. Henderson
1956 Rev. Yates C. Greer
1959 Rev. Walter W. Cawthorne
1963 Rev. James H. MacConnel
1965 Rev. Ralph A. Banks, Jr.
1966 Rev. W. J. Howes
1967 Rev. Seaman Willams
1968 Rev. Wallace Thompson
1972 Rev. Larry Thornton
1979 Rev. William James
1989 > Present: Rev. Dennis Brown
Rev. Dennis Brown is from Canterbury, England, and lived in Australia for eight years. He came to this diocese in 1983 where he first served in Fairhope, AL.
He has also served at Eufaula, AL in 1985, then came to St. Michael’s Chickasaw, AL. In 1989 Rev. Brown graduated from the University of the South at Sewanee, Tennessee, and joined St. Michael’s Episcopal Church in the same year.