Welcome to our spiritual home! We are located in the heart of the historic hamlet of Charlton, NY. Organized in 1786, the church has been an integral part of the community for well over 200 years. We welcome you to share the joy of our Lord through worship, study, service, prayer, mission and fellowship. Here you will be part of a loving family dedicated to reaching out to all in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. We welcome all people - both seekers and committed Christians. Join us as we, by our example, inspire others to love and serve our Lord.
Whether you are a life-long member or checking us out for the first time, we hope the information will encourage you to explore what we have to offer. Come inside, won't you?
Rev. Doug Gebhard, Pastor
Sunday 30 August 2015 – Fourteenth Sunday After Pentecost
Readings: Deuteronomy 4: 1-2, 6-9
Mark 7: 1-8, 14-45, 21-23
Sermon: Beware Worshipping TRADITION... Just Sayn'
Bell-Tower Restoration Project
During 2012 the church launched a program for the restoration of the bell tower of this 160-year old structure. Considerable decay of the wooden decorative elements had occurred, requiring careful repair and replacement. The topmost metal roof needed replacement. A restoration project committee was formed, and a relationship was established with the noted restoration architectural firm of John G. Waite and Associates of Albany. Quoting their Initial Condition Report: “ - - a building of outstanding architectural merit, which survives in a remarkable state of preservation. - - one of the finest examples of its type in the region, and a worthy candidate for careful preservation. The tower is a particularly rare survival given its level of articulation. Many such towers have been lost over time, but at Charlton the crowning glory of the church remains almost wholly intact after 160 years of exposure to the elements.”
In January 2013 a capital fund drive for the restoration was started, and outside grant possibilities were explored. Application was made to The New York Landmarks Conservancy. We are grateful that we were favored with two matching grants in May 2013, a Sacred Sites Grant for $3,000 for architectural services, and a Robert W. Wilson Sacred Sites Challenge Grant for $25,000 for construction. The fund drive is in process with a goal of $80,000. As of the end of April 2015, slightly over $60,000 had been raised. The drive will continue through the end of 2015.
Construction drawings and specifications were prepared by the architects and bids received from four qualified restoration contractors. Negotiations were completed with the lowest bidder, Duncan and Cahill, on 1 August 2013 for a fixed-price of $101,500. The architects’ fees were about $14,000. New woodwork has been made by LaRue Woodworking of Charlton of locally grown and milled black locust, known for its excellent stability and resistance to decay. The metal roof and flashings have been replaced with copper, the most durable roofing material available. Scaffold was up during September through November 2013. Church services and activities were completely uninterrupted during construction. All work was completed in November 2013. All are encouraged to stop by and admire the completed restoration!
A dedication of the restored tower was held at 11:15 AM on Sunday, December 22nd 2013.
The fund drive will continue through the end of 2015. Contributions will be greatly appreciated. Checks should be made out to Charlton Freehold Presbyterian Church, with the memo “Bell Tower Restoration”. Our mailing address is 768 Charlton Road; Charlton, NY 12019.
Please help us with this historically significant project.