St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, Brattleboro
Christ Church Guilford is the Mother Church of St. Michael’s Episcopal Church in next-door Brattleboro. St. Michael’s is a vibrant, healthy congregation with excellent clerical and lay leadership and several dozen active programs and ministries, including robust outreach and social justice groups. St. Michael’s is one of only nine or 10 Episcopal parishes in Vermont with a full-time rector and among the top five parishes in average Sunday attendance. The parish has sponsored half a dozen postulants for Holy Orders (deacons and priests) in the past 20 years, has had several very successful fundraising campaigns in the past decade, is moving ahead on a major roof and sustainable energy project, and makes excellent use of technology (as evidenced by the wide variety of liturgies and activities that have been offered via Zoom and Vimeo).
In 2020, the Vestry (the ruling body of the church) developed a new Mission Statement: “St. Michael’s Episcopal Church is a loving, welcoming and dynamic faith community deeply rooted in the belief that we are all children of God. We seek, through the joyful experience and power of Christ, to serve all people as we pursue stewardship of the Earth, commit to deep generosity, and promote social, racial and economic justice. Through these works of compassion, love and service, we hope to manifest the presence of God in our time.”
An icon to the patron saint of the church, St. Michael, written by Zachary Roesemann, depicts the saint tenderly holding both St. Michael’s and Christ Church Guilford in his arms. The icon resides in the St. Michael’s sanctuary.
Several active Board members of the Christ Church Guilford Society and many of its supporters are active members of St. Michael’s. The commitment of the Society to the honoring of the Abenaki people and the land well reflects the mission of St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, especially with regard to promoting social, racial and economic justice.
The Episcopal Diocese of Vermont
Technically, the Trustees of the Episcopal Diocese of Vermont own Christ Church Guilford. It is their preference that historic buildings be preserved and maintained by the local communities; they tend to discourage having to manage the sale of historic structures if they can avoid it.
The honoring of our Abenaki heritage by the Christ Church Guilford Society dovetails well with the mission of the Diocese. The Diocese explicitly honored the Abenaki – the People of the Dawn – at the 2019 Diocesan Convention with the following prayer, “People of the Dawn,” offered during the liturgy: “We acknowledge the traditional, ancestral, and unceded land of the Abenaki people on which we are worshiping, praying, and celebrating today. We honor the Abenaki people who have been living and working on this land from time immemorial. We recognize that colonialism and the oppression of Native peoples is a current and ongoing process, and we commit to building our awareness of our present participation. And so, we give thanks for those who have come before us, honoring the legacy of Vermont’s Indigenous people, the Abenaki People of the Dawn. We are grateful for the care and sharing of this land.”
In addition, the 2020 Diocesan Convention passed the following resolution: “That the 187th Convention of the Diocese of Vermont recommend and strongly encourage each congregation, and the diocese as a body, to learn the history of our land as a way of understanding and unearthing our complicity in systems that oppress persons of color and afford privilege to white persons in Vermont.” Several parishes offered their reports during the 2021 Diocesan Convention.
Historical Documents and Other Resources
- Agreement between the Trustees of the Diocese of Vermont, Burlington, Vermont, and the Incorporated Society for the Preservation of Christ’s Church in Guilford, July 12, 1982
- Agreement between the Trustees of the Diocese of Vermont, Burlington, Vermont, and Christ Church Guilford Society, Inc., October 3, 2002
- Anderson, Robert R. Christ Church Guilford. Brattleboro, Vermont: St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, 2016
- Articles of Association of Incorporated Society for the Preservation of Christ Church in Guilford, 1951, 1966 Amendment, 1967
- By-Laws of Christ Church Guilford Society, Inc., 1990
- “Deed of the Episcopal Church at East Guilford, Vt.,” Guilford, Vt. Land Records, Book 20, page 412, December 27, 1893
- National Register of Historic Places inventory nomination form
Christ Church Guilford Society Board of Directors
- Valerie Abrahamsen, Brattleboro, VT
- Andy Burrows, Guilford, VT
- Jack Lilly, Brattleboro, VT
- The Rev. Mary Lindquist, Brattleboro, VT
- Kate McGinn, Keene, NH
- Edmund Meade, Guilford, VT
- Anne Montgomery, Guilford, VT
- Linda Rice, Halifax, VT
Christ Church Cemetery Association
The Christ Church Cemetery Association is an organization separate from the Society. If you are related to someone buried in the cemetery and wish to be on the Society’s mailing list, please use the Contact form and let us know of your interest – thank you!
Friends of Music at Guilford (FOMAG)
Christ Church Guilford has had a long, productive and enjoyable relationship with Friends of Music at Guilford (FOMAG). We look forward to the time that we can resume collaborative events!
Guilford Historical Society
Christ Church Guilford’s historical documents are being donated to our friends at the Guilford Historical Society. We deeply appreciate this collaboration!