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Calvary Presbyterian Church
13560 Hawthorne Boulevard ~ Hawthorne, CA 90250 310-676-1144

 

CALVARY PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH HISTORY 1934-Present

1934 Calvary Presbyterian Church of Hawthorne was organized inter-denominational on May 16, 1934 with 127 members. The first worship service was held on Sunday, May 20, 1934. Soon a complete church program was underway. In the beginning, meetings were held in a tent, but later moved into the remodeled hotel building.

1935 The Rev. Everett B. Cowen was installed as the first Pastor on October 16, 1935. Under his leadership, the congregation grew. Larger facilities were needed - land was purchased in 1938 at 12515 S. Acacia Avenue, and with little money, but lots of faith and months of volunteer labor, a Chapel and a two-story Education Building were completed. A Hammond electric organ was installed.


1939 Sunday, June 18th, the building was dedicated.


1942 The Rev. Paul H. Fuller of Christ Church, Chicago, was called and led the church faithfully in its ministry until 1944.

1944 In May, we celebrated the tenth anniversary and burned the mortgage on the building. Affiliation with the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. was requested.

1945 In April, the Los Angeles Presbytery formally organized Calvary Presbyterian Church and installed the Rev. C. Virgil Zirbel as Pastor. In the following years, under his dedicated leadership, the church grew and new facilities were planned.

1954 On Easter Sunday the first worship service was held in the newly completed sanctuary.

1956 A two-story Christian Education Building, a recreation area, and additions to the Kindergarten Building were completed.

1958 The Rev. Samuel Calian served as Assistant to Rev. Zirbel from July 1958 until May 1960.

1961 The Rev. Leo Nelson was called by the congregation and served in its ministry until March 1968.

1964 The Rev. Al Updyke served as Assistant Pastor from March 1964 to March 1966.

1969 Susie Czech-Choir Director of Calvary until 1971.

1970 The Rev. Chet B. Gean Served as Pastor from January 1970 until January 1992.

1971 Robert Ramsay - Choir Director until 1978.

1973 In October the congregation voted to sell the property for the development of the Hawthorne Plaza. In November, during the relocation and construction, we used the facilities of the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Hawthorne.

1975 The two-story Christian Education Building from the Acacia Street site was moved to become a part of the new facilities. Martin Fuller, architect for all our buildings over the years, member of the Task Force, and Raymond Fulton, Building Supervisor, served with dedication and commitment to the congregation's goal to complete the new facility debt free. On December 7, the congregation celebrated the dedication of the new facility at 13560 S. Hawthorne Blvd. A five rank Moehler pipe organ was incorporated in the plan. The original church building which stood on Acacia Street, was donated to the Church of the Redeemer, in Compton, where it stands to this day.

1977 In April, we voted to sell the Manse to the Pastor and use the money to develop the Youth Recreational Center. In July, Rev. David Hill was installed as Assistant Pastor, after having served two years as Seminarian and Intern.

1978 Choir Director - Norma Parker until 1979.

1979 On January 1, David Hill became Calvary's first Associate Pastor until 1982. Choir Director - Jo Jean Gustason until 1993

1981 Dedication of Carillon Automatic Bell Ringing System.

1982 Easter Sunday, April 11, Dedication of Hand Bells.

1983 In May, Calvary called it first female Assistant Pastor, Dr. Gloryanna Hees.

1984 Dr. Hees became Associate Pastor until 1987. Calvary celebrated its 50th Anniversary.

1987 On November 1 (St. Andrew's Day) a Dedication Service was held for new Gemshorn Celeste Pipes. Dr. Frederick Morgan served as Parish Associate until 1990.

1989 Rev. David Maghakian - Associate Pastor until 1991. Dedication of Stained Glass Windows, crafted by Wally Dawson for the sanctuary and narthex.

1990 Complete refurbishment of the church facilities. Began our continuing financial and spiritual support of family ministry in Turkey

1991 Dedication of New Presbyterian Hymnal. Computer age begins at Calvary - Purchase of 1st computer Rev. Patrick Barker - Director of Christian Education until 1993.

1992 Rev. Ronald Burns - Interim Pastor from April 1992 until October 1992.

1993 Rev. Donald F. Sturm - Interim Pastor from February 1993 until July 1994. Norma Espinosa Parker - Choir Director until 1997.

1994 On June 26, 1994 the beautiful stained glass window in the narthex was dedicated in honor of Jo Jean Gustason, who served as Calvary's Choir Director from September 1979 to July 1993. Rev. Esther Smith was installed as Pastor of Calvary in September

1994 Pastor Smith is the first solo female Pastor/Head of Staff in the Pacific Presbytery until January 2002

1995 Rev. Dr. Robert Haag becomes our Parish Associate. Calvary’s first Confirmation Class was held - 9 young people were confirmed as members. 2002 Rev. Donald F. Sturm-Interim Pastor from June 2002 until September 2004.

2004 Norma Espinosa Parker returns as Music Director Rev. Dr. Daniel O. Beteta was installed as Pastor of Calvary in September 2004. Upgraded the playground

2005 Rev. Bruce Calkins - Interim Pastor from October 2005 December 2010

2006 Completely re-carpet entire church facility, including Hope Chapel section

2007 Kathleen Van Horn hired as Office Manager Steinway Piano in Sanctuary was donated by the family of LaDonne Carlyle in memory of Bob Haag

2008 New state-of-the art sound system installed. The seed money given as in memory of John Walter, from philanthropist member, Anne Walter. After 35 years, Seafarers held final rummage sale

2011 Rev. Thomas Eggebeen - Interim Pastor from August 2011 to October 2013

2013 Dr. Norma Espinosa Parker retires as Music Director in August.  
````````Reverend Jason E. Gamble hired as Pastor

 

 

 

 

Our Staff
Pastor
Office Manager
Custodial & Maintenance
Choir Director
Organist