Who We Are/About Us
Obedient in faith we intend to work together to touch the lives of others and be disciples of the Lord.
As part of Christ’s body on earth and secure in God’s love, we aspire to fulfill our mission in the Presbyterian tradition while remaining connected to our historical roots by:
Providing a meaningful spiritual and educational experience for all in a traditional and contemporary form to nurture and strengthen our faith in God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit;
Increasing our support of local and global mission both through our finances and hands-on work;
Offering Christian education for all to grow in faith through study and outreach encouraging members to share that message with others;
Communicating in an open, loving Christian manner in our daily workings inside and outside of our church.
In the early days of Cape May there was no church on the island. Presbyterians were members of the Cold Spring Presbyterian Church, located off-island approximately 3 miles from Cape May City. As early as 1832, there was a Presbyterian Sunday School under the care of the Cold Spring church, whose pastor held services on Sundays and weekday evenings in the schoolhouse or in hotel dining rooms. In 1844, with the support of summer visitors, the Presbyterians residing on Cape May Island erected a building on Lafayette Street. This was referred to as “The Visitor’s Church”. The title to the property was vested in the trustees of the Cold Spring church with the understanding that it should always be a Presbyterian church. On April 13, 1850 members of the Cold Spring church met in a school house and 31 of them signed a memorial asking the Presbytery of West Jersey to organize them into their own Presbyterian congregation. Due to opposition from the Cold Spring church, it was not until May 21, 1851 that the congregation was organized. The new congregation contended that the Lafayette Street church building should be turned over to them, but instead the Cold Spring church sold the building to the Cape May Methodist Church.
The new congregation, now without a building of its own, found a site on Lafayette Street and erected a new church at a cost of $7,000. This building was dedicated on July 17, 1853. It later became the resort’s Welcome Center and still stands as the theater for the Cape May Stage.
During the last decade of the 19th century, plans were formulated for the building of the church’s third and present home, on the corner of Decatur and Hughes Streets. This placed the church right in the heart of Cape May’s historical district, and only a block away from both the Atlantic Ocean and the Washington Street Mall. Cape May Presbyterian Church continues to attract many visitors and retains the informal title of The Visitor’s Church.
History has been and continues to be very important to the members and friends of the Cape May Presbyterian Church. For anyone interested, there is a large collection of historical information that goes into great detail concerning the development of this congregation.