Old St. Andrews



History of All Saints Church



Historical Sketch of Church of England in St. Andrews
What we owe to the Life and Labor of Two Good Men
Written by Rev. Canon Ketchum, Rector of All Saints Church

. . . Among [the earliest settlers of the area] was the Rev. Samuel Andrews of Wallingford, Con. He was a graduate of Yale College and was ordained by the Bishop of London AD 1760. From the church at Wallingford, Mr. Andrews brought with him the crown and coat of arms, which are now placed over the west door in All Saints church. The parish and church he left are now among the most important in the Diocese. A celebration of the centennial of the parish will be held in June next. Here, it may be mentioned, that the relatives of the first rector of St. Andrews in the United States, have manifested a deep interest in this parish. From them were received the beautiful chancel windows in All Saints Church, as a memorial to the Rev. Samuel Andrews. They have also given generously towards the fund lately expended in improving the grounds and restoring and cleaning the grave stones in the old church burial ground.

The following is a copy from the minutes of the first meeting of the Vestry in the parish of St. Andrews, held August 2, 1786. Present, Rev. Samuel Andrews; Thomas Wyer, and Joseph Garnet, Ch. Wardens John Hall, Maurice Scott, John Dunn, Joseph Pendlebury, John Bentley, Vestrymen. William Gallop, esq., appeared and was sworn in a vestryman and took his seat accordingly. A letter was read by the missionary, of which the following is an extract:

" I have invited you here at this time to consult upon such measures as may be requisite in the settlement and enrolment of this infant Church. The first thing should be a letter of thanks to the Society for the propagation of the gospel for their liberal provision for the support of the gospel among you, for their interests with the government, and the conditions for the further support of the missionary. Your abilities at present are too slender to render that support considerable. You would do well to apply to the Governor for a charter of incorporation. The Society in England, together with the government have agreed to contribute towards the building a decent Glebe House. I wish to bring my family next spring, the cost of removing large family such a distance is very considerable, and in the service for the parish I am now spending for my board that money which the Society in England gave me to defray the expense of removing."

To this letter a kind and most courteous response was made by the vestry. Further on, in these interesting records, we find the judicious suggestions of the Rector were carried out. From a valuable work by G. Herbert Lee, on the first fifty years of the Church of England in New Brunswick, it is said: On arriving at St. Andrews the Rev. Samuel Andrews found "a considerable body of people of different national extractions, living in great harmony and peace, punctual in attending divine service and behaving with propriety and devotion." The civil magistrate, ever since the town was settled, had acted as Lay Reader on Sundays, and set the people a good example.

In 1788 a church 55 x 40 was built and opened on St. Andrews day. Towards this a large allowance was contributed by the government. A bell weighing 350 pounds was given by Mr. John MacMaster, merchant in London. During the year ending June 1780, [sic] Mr. Andrews baptized 70 persons. In 9 months Ad 1791 he baptized 110. In a distant part of the parish, in a lonely house, after due preparation he baptized the matron of a family, 82 years of age, her son of 60 years, 2 grandsons and 7 great grand children. The church, which was among the first erected in the province, was afterwards enlarged by an apsidal chancel, and was in many respects far superior to many churches built at that time.

Replaced by the present parish church 1867, the timbers and other materials of the old church were found on their being taken down to be of the very best description. In some instances, they had been brought from the US. The pulpit, doors and large portion of the inner roof of the present church are formed from the wood of the first church built in St. Andrews. After the erection of the church, the parochial work of the rector of the parish was more concentrated, with regular services. . . .

The work of Mr. Andrews was necessarily very trying. He was rector of St. Andrews, and the only missionary, for many years of the County of Charlotte. He performed all his arduous duties with zeal and ability. Old records tell of extended visits to adjacent islands and far up the country, in what are now the flourishing parishes of St. Stephen and St. George. Bear in mind the difficulty of travelling those days before even roads were made. . . .

The death of Mr. Andrews occurred on the 26th Sept, 1818, at the advanced age of 82 years, thirty of which had been spent in the arduous work of a missionary in New Brunswick. In a notice in the Saint John City Gazette, Oct. 7th, 1818, it is said: "This pious and amiable character has retired from the world full of years and of a admiration and esteem of all who knew him. . . . and while memory holdsw its seat the recollection of his virtues and of his worth will be consecrated in the hearts of all his parishioners.