The End Comes for Central Presbyterian

Reader Brian Thorp sends in a couple of photos documenting the final hours of what he’s now labeled the “holiest” church in Houston — it was, at least for a time today. The Central Presbyterian Church at 3788 Richmond Ave. was designed in 1962 by Astrodome architects Wilson, Crain, Morris and Anderson; it sits on the site where the Morgan Group is ready to build a new apartment complex. By 9 am this morning (above), the church had developed a few punctures in its side. By noon, much of the dust, and a good portion of the church’s walls, had cleared:


A later, more down-to-earth view of the now-liberated sanctuary from this afternoon, tweeted by West U Examiner reporter Michael Reed:

Photos: Brian C. Thorp (from above) and Michael Reed

8 Comment

  • Did this congregation move or simply close up shop altogether>

  • Ashes to ashes, dust to dust?

  • ITZ a shame they didn’t recycle…..I saw the bulldozer crash into the ceramic roofing they stacked as a wall. No telling what else they wasted. sigh…….

  • The congregation moved a couple years ago to the Pres church on San Felipe.

    As of this morning the cross in the front was leaning backwards. Could not get a good photo, but it was sad to see so much material go to waste.

  • Looks like they merged with (and meet at) St. Philip Presbyterian Church:

  • The congregation merged with St. Philip last year. This from St. Philip’s website: “Central Presbyterian Church has served Houston for over 100 years. It began life as Cumberland Presbyterian Church of Houston, forming on Easter Sunday, April 1, 1894. Originally meeting in Dowdel Schoolhouse and the YMCA building downtown, the congregation built its first one-room church on the corner of Fannin and Pease in 1896. After the uniting of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church and the Presbyterian Church USA in 1906, the congregation chose the new name of Central Presbyterian Church in 1911. The growing congregation-555 members by 1925—outpaced its small building, and Central Presbyterian Church purchased a new site on Montrose Boulevard at Berthea Street in 1927. With a membership of over a thousand by 1947, Central Presbyterian decided to move once more and build a larger building in the 1950s. The congregation purchased a property on Richmond Avenue at Cummins and constructed the sanctuary and campus, holding the first services there in 1962.”

  • Sad to see it go. I grew up in that church, never really gave much thought to how nice the facilities were when I was a kid. I hope someone saved the stained glass at least from the sanctuary. It appears to have been already removed in the top photo. The stained glass was lovely when lit up at night, even better when the chapel facing it was lit, too.