Our History

The Church  of the Good Shepherd, Cloverdale

 Founded, 1888.

The little carpenter gothic redwood church at the corner of Main and Broad Streets in Cloverdale is a withness of Christ in this community and of a continuing presence of the Episcopal Church.  Despite the national decline in church attendance, Good Shepherd has maintained a very constant attendance from it founding. 

The Clergy have been committed retired clergy who have devoted many years to providing leadership and conducting services.  These clergy have been willing to serve Good Shepherd and have been willing to drive considerable distances to come to Cloverdale , as none were in residence here.

During the tenure of the Rev. David Powell, the first half-time vicar in many years, a number of changes took pllace, not always without concerns and discussions as reflected by the Mission Committee minutes.  Many of these changes conformed to hanges acrross the Episcopal Church, but were controversial for some in the congregation.  Worship was changed from the traditional altar at the back of the sanctuary to the altar pulled out from the wall to freestanding with the celebrant facing the congregation.  Holy Eucharist, Rite II became the service used and the 1940 Hymnal was replaced with the 1982 Hymnal.  Fr. Powell started a Bible Study, a spirituality class and a Sunday School.  He began an outreach to Spanish speakers, as he spoke Spanish.  He did many visitations and the congregation increased.

There was a commitment on the part of the leadership and membership of the church that the holy place called Good Shepherd Episcopal Church must remain as an important piece of the architecture and witnness in Cloverdale.  In 1995, the Building Funds and other funds totaled $37,906.  These funds have made possible not only keeping up the buildings, but have mmade additions and improvements affordable.

As the first 100 years were completed in 1988, the church was painted and the roof repaired.  This was done because of a generous gift from Tom and Sally Jordan.  The tri-colored windows on the south side of the church were replaced.  The tree in front of the church was removed in 1990, as it became a hazard.  In 1991, a new front door was installed and the sacristy was painted and carpeted.  In 1994, the unique Good Shepherd window was planned and designated "The Senior Warden" window.  It was completed and installed using funds from the Bert Callwell bequest and other donated funds totalling over $8,000.  The designer, Bruce St. John Maher attended the dedication that was held on August 4 1996.  Also during the mid-90's, the Columbarium projject began as a source for funds, as well as an apppropriate use of space.

The congregation of Good Shepherd was gifted with strong lay leadership from its founding.  Over the years fro 1988 to 2013 many challenges were faced, as the Mission committee remained determined to keep the church operating and not close as it had during its first century.  Many of these individuals are named on the plaque in the church and are memorialized by bequests and generous donations. 

When the Del Webb Clover Springs community was built, a number of new members arrived at Good Shepherd, with histories of working in parishes and continued that work when they joined the congregation.  Jane Snibe was the first licensed Eucharistic Minister, who transferred in.  Jim Price joined her a few months later, and his wife, Georgie became volunteer organist.  Jane headed the Altar Guild and earned Lay Preaching and Worship Leader licenses.  Dick Snibbe served on the Mission Committee was Senior Warden several times, and he and Jane have been convention delegates for many years.  He headed up an ushering team, which was started.  Many other pitched in and added new ideas and vitality. 

As we look back after more than 125 years, and ahead for the next years, we give thanks to God for this place of worship and fellowship.  We know we are dependent on the financial gennerosity and hard work of any people during the first 125 years.  Many of those, gifted Good Shepherd with generous donations and provided for bequests in their estates.  Our hope is to leave those who follow, a vibrant church community, and beautiful spaces to meet God and do his work.





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