The Foundations of St Joseph's Episcopal/Anglican Church
A BRIEF HISTORY AND STRUCTURE OF ST. JOSEPH’S EPISCOPAL/ANGLICAN CHURCH.
The Church began with weekly afternoon services in the homes of the founding members in Co-op City, Bronx.
The first service was held on Palm Sunday, March 22, 1970. Father David Hogan, Father Robert Willing and Father James Wattley took turns in leading the services.
In June 1971, Bishop Donegan granted mission status to the worshipers and Fr. Wattley was appointed Chaplain to the “Episcopal Community of Co-op City” The Dreiser Loop Community Center was rented and worship and Sunday School were held at the center.
On April 7, 1972, the Vestry voted to name the worshiping community the Episcopal Church of St. Joseph, after the foster father of Jesus Christ, who was a master carpenter and the patron saint of builders, because Co-op City was being built.
On February 1, 1977, under the leadership of the first full time priest, Father Robert Gendreau, the Church started worshiping at 171 Dreiser Loop. In 1979 the Church was granted parish status. Father Gendreau served as the first rector until 1984. He was succeeded by Father Donald Bitticks who served as part-time priest until 1985. Mother Rhoda Treherne-Thomas became the parish priest and served the Church until 1987.
On May 1, 1988, the Church moved to its present location, 155 Dreiser Loop, with Father Allan Newman as the Priest-in-Charge. After five years, he moved on to another assignment.
The Church was served by a number of supply priests until Father John Lloyd came and served for about three years. Father Calvin McIntyre Rector of the Church of the Good Shepherd in the Bronx, was appointed Bishop’s Vicar. He faithfully led the congregation, until Father Williamson Taylor, Canon for Congregational Development in the Diocese of New York, was appointed part-time Priest-in-Charge, by Bishop Mark Sisk, the Bishop of New York. He started his ministry with the congregation on the first Sunday of October 2002. During his thirteen years as our Priest, our congregation has grown spiritually, numerically, socially, educationally and financially. Our average Sunday attendance has risen from the mid-twenties when he became our Priest, to the mid-eighties in 2015.