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Favorite memories
August 12, 2020, 2:00 PM

Session records of 1919 outline a five-year plan endorsed by Rev. Norman Curtis and the elders. It was called the New Era Program and it called for raising $10,000 from the membership and borrowing another $10,000 for the purpose of building a new church building. The church would acquire land on the northern edge of town at the north end of Sacaton Street across the steet from the Grammar School later known as Central School. A new manse was built on the property and the pastor’s family moved in the end of June 1921. In 1925, the congregation had 82 members and pledged $6707 for the building fund. The women's group raised $300 by selling turkey dinners. The five-year plan was taking a bit longer than anticipated. A loan was received from the Home Mission Board and the following year a contract was let for the sanctuary and ground was broken March 13, 1926. The church sanctuary was designed by architect Robert Orr of Los Angeles and constructed by Michael Sullivan, a Catholic stonemason, who built several residences and commercial buildings in Casa Grande. FPC also made plans for a church building in Toltec and the addition of a community pastor. The Toltec Church was established in May of 1919 in the new Toltec Hotel, but by 1922 the boom in the area had dwindled enough to close the church. Pastor Curtis left in 1922 and Rev Dr Jonathan Wesley Purcell came for two years. Rev Benjamin Freye came from Denver in 1924 and left in 1925. On September 6, 1925 Curry H. Love was installed as the new pastor of First Presbyterian Church and ushered in a new era of stability for the church. He served for 14 years. That stone edifice served as a reminder of stability for the church as well as the community through the dark days of the Great Depression. The building still stands in the community as the Museum of Casa Grande, a reminder that whatever may change around us God remains unchanged and ready to help us. What's your favorite memory of FPC? Contact Pastor Bill @ directcareminbill@gmail.com.