Sun | Oct 21, 2018

Christ Church celebrates 175 years

Published:Saturday | July 4, 2015 | 12:00 AM
Christ Church, Portland.
The interior of Christ Church, Portland.


NESTLED ON a slope in the heart of Port Antonio, Portland, is arguably the oldest place of worship, and one of the most historic building in the parish - Christ Church.

The church building, which was constructed in 1840, celebrated 175 years in April, and according to Coleen Clarke, office administrator, a special brunch was arranged to celebrate the institution's anniversary.

"Our membership has dwindled. Over the years, members have either backslidden, migrated, or died. This church has stood the test of time, and despite the shortfall in membership, which now stands at approximately 120 persons, the work of the Lord must go on. The building is a spectacle, as it was constructed using bricks made out of clay, and it has survived many hurricanes," Clarke told Family and Religion.

Christ Church, which has played homage to many funerals, weddings, baptisms, graduations, seminars, and regular church services, is also renowned for its chiming clock and bell, which echoes throughout the length and breadth of Port Antonio, especially on a Sunday morning.

And with a new reverend assuming duties at the beginning of 2015, efforts are being made to save as many souls as possible, which is also one way of increasing membership.

But for Clarke, the fairy tale look of the building is one that has captivated many persons including tourists, who flock the church yard on a monthly basis to take photographs and to shoot videos.

While other buildings, which once lie in close proximity to the church have either been demolished or have become derelicts, the 175-year-old giant stands firm, and probably will for centuries to come.