Church of the Good Shepherd
Friday, August 18, 2017
Meeting you where you are on life's journey.

History

 

1857-1868 The first Episcopal parish in Nashua, St. Luke's Church.

 

1868-1871 Services held in private homes.

 

1871 Church of the Good Shepherd organized by Bishop William Niles.

 

1878 Church building constructed in four months and dedicated on November 21st. Mrs. Lucia Rand donated $20,000 and an additional $6,500 was raised to purchase the property. Building the church cost $14,000 and the first organ cost $2,000.

 

1882 CGS mission officially incorporated as a parish.

 

1885-1893 Rev. William Moreland served as first rector. He raised funds to build the current Diocesan House in Concord, originally used as the bishop's home. Moreland was elected Bishop of Sacramento (California) in 1893.

 

1896 Electric lights installed in the church building.

 

1898 The Brotherhood of St Andrew chapter # 89 first formed at CGS in 1887 with a Junior chapter ( 300-J) formed.

 

1902-1938 Rev. William P. Niles, longest serving rector of CGS, known for his distinguished service to the parish and community.

 

1904 Current marble altar installed in memory of Henry Norwell, generous parishioner.

 

1928 Current Parish Hall built, costing $45,000.

 

1948 Current stained glass windows behind the altar installed, in memory of William P. Niles.

 

1953 Children's Wintergarden started as a kindergarten ministry to meet the rising population of children in the city; continued into the 1970s.

 

1954-1972 The Rev. Walter Righter pastored CGS through the boom times of the 50s and 60s. Righter became our second rector to become a bishop when elected Bishop of Iowa in 1972.

 

1954 Current office and classroom building added on to the Parish Hall.

 

1972-1984 While Rev. Robert Schenkel was rector, CGS made the significant decision to remain at its downtown location, and began a 10 percent tithe of all its income to outreach.

 

1986-present Under the leadership of Rev. Dr. Robert "Odie" Odierna, CGS has grown from 350 households to 500 households, strengthening the parish's worship, fellowship, Christian Education, and outreach programs. A healthy parade of assistant rectors has greatly aided the ministry of the parish. Key elements added during this time include: Walking in the Light Spiritual Renewal; Question and Answer sermons; Deck the Halls Sunday; the Memorial Burial Garden; a Companion Parish relationship with St. Paul's, Picayune, Mississippi (victimized by hurricane Katrina); five parishioners presented for ordination to the priesthood; the Shepherd's Commendation award on All Saints' Sunday; Godly Play children's education program; and Journey to Adulthood (J2A) youth education program.

 

1987 Nashua Pastoral Care Center founded, under the direction of Rector Odie, parishioner Carl Swenson, and the CGS vestry. It is now a premier outreach agency responding to those in need in Nashua. Because of the Care Center, CGS is a designated Jubilee Ministry Center of the Episcopal Church.

 

1988 A $400,000 gift from generous parishioner Esther Harless enabled improvements and additions to the organ, landscaping, outreach, scholarships, and our endowment funds.

 

1992 Second story added to offices to house the growing demands of the Care Center.

 

1997 Parish Hall auditorium and downstairs classrooms renovated.

 

2000 Care Center moved into its own building on Concord Street. Second-floor offices in the church building converted to classrooms for the parish.

 

2007-2011 Capital Fund Drive raised $1.1 million for building repairs and renovations, including: a new slate roof on the church, a new roof on the parish hall, and repointing of the church masonry; repairs to the bell tower and installation of a new electronic carillon system; repair of the stained glass windows and installation of a new mosaic tile floor around the altar; renovation of the parish hall foyer and repair of the church entrance; a new hardwood floor in the parish hall auditorium and renovation of its kitchen; reinforcements to the building structures; a new natural gas heating system for the entire church and parish hall complex, and installation of a dehumidifying system in the basements; repaving and terrain renovations for better drainage around the parish hall. 

 

A 10% tithe of the non-designated monies contributed to funding for youth mission trips; paying off our loan for second story classrooms; building a playground for the new Care Center/Southern NH Services Head Start Child Care Center; exchange trips to and from St. Paul's Picayune, MS; and Walking in the Light spiritual renewal program.