WHO WE ARE

Christ Church is a joyful and faithful community of apostles reaching out and transforming lives for Christ.
 

We exist to equip people to know and follow Christ.

Our mission and ministry is founded on these core values: 

The Holy Scripture

A Servant’s Heart

A Loving Spirit

Lay Leadership

 
We are one congregation gathering on two campuses to worship God, proclaim the Gospel, make disciples, minister pastorally, and serve people in need.

OUR STORY

 Christ Church has a long and rich history.

1867
We began as an Episcopal Mission, founded in 1867 through the effort of lay leaders in Tyler with the blessing of the Rt. Rev. Alexander Gregg, the first Bishop of Texas. The mission started with seven communicants and occasional services led by the Rev. Benners, Rector of the Church at Marshall. Meeting places included the old A.M.E. church building and the old Federal Court Room. 
 
The Mission’s first priest and Christ Church’s first rector was a refugee, Count Emir Bela Gyeita Carois Hamvasy, born of nobility in Szikis Fehervar, Hungary, in 1820. During his Tyler ministry, the Rev. Hamvasy witnessed the erection of a church building for worship and the admission of Christ Episcopal as a parish to the Diocese of Texas in 1874.
 
Ten rectors followed the Rev. Mr. Hamvasy, faithfully serving the parish in its clapboard structure at the corner of Locust and South Bois d’Arc.
1867
1916

Rev. Snowden stirred the parish into activity by sheer “force of personality.”  Raising capital and overseeing construction of the new church building during both the Great War and the Spanish Flu epidemic, on October 6, 1918, the first sermon was preached in the new nave in downtown Tyler.  On January 15-16, 1919, Christ Church hosted the 70th Annual Diocesan Council.

1916
1953
There have been four major campus improvements over the past century. First, in 1953, was the addition of the Henry M. Bell Memorial Building, honoring a beloved, civic-minded churchman. The building was designed specifically with the needs of children of the church in mind, consisting of offices, classrooms, library and chapel.
 
The Grelling Building provided space for a larger Parish Hall, kitchen, audio-visual room with tiered seating, offices and a new home for the church library.      
1953
2001
In 2001, another parish dream was fulfilled with the construction of a Columbarium in the church’s Memorial Garden, a fixture since 1953.
 
Under the Rev. Harrison McLeod’s leadership from 2002-2008, Christ Church experienced steady growth and a renewal of our pastoral ministries. 
2001
2007
The Choir School of East Texas was formed in 2007, an after-school program that trains boys and girls to sing professionally with adult singers.
 
During 2007, Bishop Don Wimberley, Rector Harrison McLeod and the Vestry, identified the need for additional space. A feasibility study was conducted and church leaders proceeded with the planning and fund raising through the “Lift High the Cross” campaign. 
 
The result was razing the Grelling Building, and replacing it with the Grelling-Spence Building. Upon completion, it was dedicated by Bishop Andy Doyle in November, 2009. 
 
The new building consists of four floors. The lower level houses a choir room, the Organist-Choirmaster’s office, and a large nursery. The street level includes the reception area, the Terra Sancta Gift Shop, the Parish Hall, and an excellent commercial kitchen. The third floor consists of a coffee/meeting area, library, and three classrooms used for adult education and meetings. The fourth floor or Youth Floor has a games/relaxation area, classrooms, offices for the youth ministers, a gymnasium, and a kitchen.
2007
2009
In September 2009, The Rev. David A. Luckenbach became Rector.
 
Christ Church has continued to grow in all areas of ministry.  We have developed a robust adult spiritual formation program, including strong Sunday school and neighborhood groups.   
 
We have strengthened Mission and Outreach ministries, partnering with PATH (People Attempting to Help), Bethesda Health Clinic, Samaritan Counseling Center of Tyler, and the Gathering, a ministry to the homeless in downtown Tyler.  Christ Church regularly takes adults on spiritual pilgrimages to Jerusalem, Turkey, and Greece, and the United Kingdom.
2009
2011

In 2011, Christ Church began a new ministry to students at the University of Texas at Tyler and other area schools.  Our college minister meets weekly with area university students to support and spiritually equip them as they walk with the Lord through their college years.

2011
2013 – Present

In 2013, Christ Church began to develop a new ministry to people who live in south Tyler.  In partnership with the Diocese of Texas, we purchased and developed twenty-six acres, establishing the Christ Church South Campus, a complement and extension of our historic ministry based in downtown Tyler.  Since 2016, Christ Church has ministered to the community at and through both our downtown campus and Christ Church South.

2013 – Present

One Church | Two Campuses

Christ Church Downtown • Tyler, Texas
Meeting & Mailing Address
118 South Bois d’Arc • Tyler, Texas 75702

Phone: 903-597-9854 • Fax: 903-597-5723

Christ Church South
Meeting Address
15747 Old Jacksonville Hwy • Tyler, Texas 75703

Join us on Facebook

Download the Christ Church App
© 2021 Christ Church, Episcopal