Seeking, Sharing, Serving

On November 14, 1875, the Second Presbyterian Church was organized by Lexington Presbytery with 13 members, all of whom were from the First Presbyterian Church.  The services of the infant church were held in the old town hall (now referred to as the Masonic Temple Building) on Main Street (now Beverley Street).

The first church building was erected on a lot purchased in 1876 and was on the corner of Frederick and Lewis Streets.  It was a red brick structure that was used until 1901 when it was torn down to be replaced by a larger one.  In October 1902 this building was completed.

The Second Church was known as “The Country Church in Town” because it appealed to the country people who moved to Staunton.  Members of the congregation extended out every road leading into Staunton as much as ten miles.

The present structure, the third home of the church, embraces much of the second building which was so extensively damaged by fire on December 2, 1946, that the congregation decided to make important improvements in rebuilding it.  Construction began on January 20, 1947.  All services were held in the Visulite Theatre for the period of fifteen months following the fire.  Sunday, February 20, 1948 marked the first use of the rebuilt church.

On July 14, 1958, it was decided by the congregation to erect an educational building west of the church.  This was completed and dedicated on Sunday, April 16, 1961.  This was the church's first educational building.

Second Church was instrumental in the organization of two sister congregations in Staunton.  In 1959, fifty-nine members were dismissed to become charter members of Covenant Presbyterian Church.  In 1960, twenty-four members were dismissed to become charter members of Bethany Presbyterian Church.

Second Presbyterian Church celebrated its centennial year in 1975, and 125 years in 2000.  Many items of the church’s past can be viewed in the Historical Room, located just outside the front door on the Lewis Street side of the Sanctuary.

In 2006, Second Church embarked on a program to replace its Sanctuary roof, and repair the flat roof above the Educational Wing.  The existing shingle roof was replaced with a raised-seam copper roof that will serve the congregation for years to come.  The total cost of this project was just under $200,000, which included the cost of relocating the power lines along the Lewis Street side of the sanctuary.

On January 2, 2008, Second Church closed on the sale of the rental building (211 W. Frederick Street).  This building, formerly the offices of the former Lexington Presbytery, was owned by the church for around 30 years.  The property and the parking lot were sold to Community Bank, now known as City National Bank.  At the current time, Second retains the ability to use the parking lot during non-banking hours.

Over the years, Second Church has been served by 13 installed Pastors & 2 interim Pastors:
 1875-1878 McDuff Simpson
 1878-1885 James Edward Booker
 1885-1891 Herbert Henry Hawes
 1892-1896 William Cumming
 1896-1901 John Miller Wells
 1901-1919 William Nelson Scott
 1919-1921 Charles Andrew Lawrence
 1922-1926 Watson Emmet Davis
 1927-1964 Ray Lawrence St. Clair
 1965-1976 Julius S. Garbett
 1977-1993 Dennis Walker
 1993-1995 Frank Preston (Interim)
 1995-2012 Daniel S. Williams
 2012-2014 Harry Johns (Interim)
 2014-         Evan R. Smith