Macon’s First Church and Mother Church of the Diocese of Atlanta
Christ Church stands in the heart of our historic city. The town of Macon was created by an act of the Georgia legislature in December, 1822. Three years later, the Rev. Lot Jones traveled on a missionary tour to the new town and helped to establish the congregation of Christ Church. The Church was officially incorporated in 1825, and is known as the first church in Macon, Georgia. The first church building, located on our present one-acre lot, was opened for services in 1834 and was consecrated in 1838. The growing congregation of Christ Church quickly outgrew the first building, which was torn down and replaced in 1851 by the present stucco-over-brick, Gothic style building. This worship space with its beautiful stained glass windows was restored in 2000. We hold our 8:00 and 11:00 services in this space year round and all three services are in this worship space during the summer.
A smaller worship space, Jones Chapel, was added to the church grounds in 1879. Today, it houses a newly renovated chapel and a modern commercial kitchen. Jones Chapel serves as an alternative place of worship with flexible seating of 70 and is the location of our family service (with the a children’s message) at 9:00 during the school year. It is also used for our Weekend Lunch Program every Saturday and Sunday where we feed approximately 150 needy people per day.
The congregation of Christ Church continued to grow. In order to accommodate the need for additional space, the Parish House was built in 1926. A two-story building of approximately 17,000 square feet, it houses a choir room, two nurseries, a parlor, twelve church school classrooms and a large fellowship hall with a stage, two kitchens, a small bookstore, and robing rooms.
We also have a long history of caring for others. In 1886, Julia Parkman Jones left money in her Will for the establishment of a home for “the indigent ladies of the Parish, and such other persons as the wardens and vestry of Christ Church may select as worthy and in need of its protection”. From that time until 1937, the house was a haven for many, but its operation became overwhelmingly expensive during the Depression and the house was closed. Thereafter, income from the fund has been used to assist those in need through our outreach ministry.
Christ Church was the first church in Macon to house an organ. In 1999, the building underwent considerable renovation to accommodate a new organ to fill our sanctuary with beautiful music. With the purchase and installation of a tracker organ, the organ and choir were relocated from the chancel to the gallery. The organ and the renovations were completed in the year 2000 in time to celebrate the 175th anniversary of the church. Our nave seats 360 parishioners. The stained glass windows were recently refurbished and restored.
The “Great Hall” is located upstairs in the Parish House. It regularly serves as the venue for many church events. Recently, it has been renovated with improved lighting, a new sound system, and an updated audio/video system. It includes a large stage, which is used for many special presentations, including church meetings, children’s plays, musical, and social events. It is a special gathering place, where our parishioners enjoy fellowship and make memories.
The Harrold House is a two-story, 4,000 sq. ft., 19th century building located adjacent to the church building. The Harrold House was renovated in 2001 and provides office space for the clergy and other members of our church staff.