Parish Overview

History and Overview

The history of Christ Church as a parish dates back to July of 1841 when Dr. George Washington Dame, an Episcopal priest from Danville (30 miles east), began monthly visits to Martinsville to hold services. The small congregation initially met in the private home of Dr. Anderson Wade but within a year was able to expand into a small brick building where the little parish began to grow.

By 1888 planning began for the erection of a much larger, grander church building and by the turn of the century construction was under way on the new structure which remains essentially the same as when it was consecrated in 1903.

Ancillary buildings include our Parish House, the mansion home of prominent local family, that provides meeting rooms, class rooms, a nursery as well as church offices and serves as a gathering place for many parish and community functions. Adjacent to the church is a four bedroom brick colonial house that is being refurbished to once again serve as a rectory.

Our parish has grown over the years under the leadership of many fine priests, two of whom have moved on to the Episcopacy. Realizing that young people are the lifeblood of our future, a group of parents and church leaders brainstormed the entire Christian Education program and developed a unique “out of the box” concept of a family church school. This approach has taken the traditional 9:30 Sunday morning classroom from a school-like setting and moved it to a dynamic series of lessons that may take place beside a river or at a lake; on a mountain top, in a kitchen or anywhere the lesson may lead.

Style of Worship

The traditional style of worship is favored by our parish. A dynamic music program serves as a centerpiece in our church services and is a part of both Sunday morning services. Each quarter Holy Eucharist is celebrated with acoustic contemporary music in a relaxed setting. Music styles range from bluegrass to traditional hymns performed with unique instrumentation, to music written by contemporary composers.


8:00 AM: Holy Eucharist, Rite I

10:30 AM: Holy Eucharist, Rite II

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