Lower Merion Historical Society

The Lower Merion Historical Society

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Church of St. Asaph

27 Conshohocken State Road
Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004
Church of St. Asaph website

St. Asaph's church in Bala Cynwyd another view of gravestones a burial with a low marble wall surrounding the plot
grave stones with church in background through trees grave stones in the cemetery headstone of James Edwin Love: fancy Celtic interlaced carvings in the shape of a cross

On November 16, 1887, six gentlemen met at Pencoyd, home of George B. Roberts, and became the founding vestry of the Church of St. Asaph. They chose Theophilus P. Chandler as architect, and he designed a building that resembles St. Asaph Cathedral in Wales, reflecting the origin of the Bala Cynwyd area’s first settlers. The Robertses donated land for the church; ground was broken the following spring, interrupted by the blizzard of 1888. The cornerstone was laid that May, and the Victorian Gothic building rose amid the fields, close to still unpaved City Line Avenue and the Schuylkill Valley spur of the Pennsylvania Railroad.

The first service in the completed church took place on March 24, 1889. When the first rector, the Rev. Frederick Burgess, arrived in June, the money collected at his first service was sent to the victims of the recent Johnstown flood, beginning a history of outreach that continues to the present day.