Trinity Episcopal Church in beautiful Rutland, Vermont is a welcoming, inclusive, Christ-centered parish family. Wherever you are on your faith journey, know that you are welcome here. Just as you are. One of our strengths we hear is that we are a warm and welcoming part of the Body of Christ. In all that we do we strive to live into our mission that “We are a vibrant Episcopal family united in following Christ.”
What We Believe
We Episcopalians believe in a loving, liberating, and life-giving God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. As members of the Anglican Communion in the United States, we are descendants of and partners with the Church of England and the Scottish Episcopal Church and part of the third largest group of Christians in the world.
We believe that we are part of God's creation, made in the image of God. We believe that the universe is Good, that it is the work of a single loving God who creates, sustains, and directs it. We believe in following the teachings of Jesus Christ, whose life, death, and resurrection saved the world. We believe that death is not the end of our story; we are invited to live forever in and with God.
On Sunday’s we celebrate Holy Communion, also called the Eucharist (which literally means “thanksgiving”). The benefits we receive in the Eucharist are the forgiveness of our sins, the strengthening of our union with Christ and one another, and the foretaste of the heaven where we live in God forever.
We have a legacy of inclusion and seek to tell and exemplify God’s love for every human being. In our Baptismal Covenant (Promise) we promise to seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving our neighbor as ourselves. We also commit to strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being. With that, leadership is a gift from God and can be expressed by all people in our church, regardless of sexual identity or orientation. Laypeople (those who are not ordained) and clergy cooperate as leaders at all levels of our church.
Ultimately, we believe that God loves you – no exceptions!
If interested to learn more, visit the website for The Episcopal Church or contact our Priest-in-Charge, Sarah.
Trinity's Historic Past
In 1994 Trinity Episcopal Church celebrated the 200th anniversary of the first Episcopal service in Rutland, Vermont. In honor of this event a history of the parish was compiled and published. The history of Trinity was written by Audrey Murdock, who was then Parish Historian, with assistance from Rev. Christopher Powell and Deacon Mary Pratt.
The following excerpts are either taken or paraphrased from that booklet, "A History of Trinity Episcopal Church Rutland, VT." Two of the images on this page are from a USGenWeb Archives Web Site, Penny Postcards From Vermont, and are used with kind permission of the postcards' owner Joy R. Fisher.
The Old State House
The Old State House which was built around 1775 and demolished in the early 1900s, was on West Street facing Court Square and situated close to the Rutland Armory. The State Legislature met here in October 1784 and 1786, and the first Episcopal service in Rutland was held here on March 4, 1794. and the first Episcopal service in Rutland was held here on March 4, 1794.
In 1832 Vermont became a diocese separate from the Eastern Diocese which had formerly included New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. On April 22 the first Vestry of Trinity Church was appointed. On this same day, a committee was formed to purchase a site for an Episcopal Church building in Rutland. The group soon purchased a parcel of land for $450 on the west side of North Main Street, a little north of West Street.
The Church, designed by Bishop John Henry Hopkins, was built entirely of wood with a square tower in the center containing the present bell (which was first rung March 11, 1855). It had a basement which was used for Sunday School and for weekday services.
In 1849 the railroad came to Rutland and the town began to expand. As a result there was soon a need for a new church building. Plans were put on hold due to the outbreak of the Civil War, but in 1863 the site was selected and purchased for our present church building. On August 16, 1865, the new Trinity Church was consecrated by Bishop Hopkins. Bishop Hopkins had been the rector of Trinity and was responsible for planning and designing the new church.
Our chapel was designed not long after the completion of the church and was completed in 1876. All the design, building and furnishing of the chapel was paid for entirely through the dedication of The Women of Trinity. On the 200th anniversary of our church, the chapel was blessed and christened "Hopkins Chapel" in memory of Trinity's second rector and the designer of our current church building, Bishop John Henry Hopkins.
The interior of the chapel underwent several décor changes over the years, including a rather dark period where the walls and ceiling were covered in wainscoting. During the mid-1990s capital campaign for major renovations, the chapel received a face-lift and a brighter, newer look complete with stenciling done by some talented ladies in the parish. The image to the left shows the chapel today.
The Memorial Garden
Adjacent to the church you will find our peaceful Memorial Garden. Designed for quiet and contemplative meditation, it is a place to serenely and prayerfully remember those who have gone before us or simply a place of prayer. Those who visit the Memorial Garden find it a perfect place to escape the busyness of our lives.