Episcopal Diocese of Northern Indiana Archives

St. Timothy's Episcopal Church, Griffith

St. Timothy's was founded as a mission of St. Paul's Episcopal Church of Hammond in 1965 under the leadership of the Rev. Eugene O. Douglass. The idea for a new mission had germinated as early as the mid-1950s, shortly after Douglass was called as rector of St. Paul's and the parish experienced significant growth. In 1960, St. Paul's vestry discussed plans for a new mission church to be built south of the Little Calumet River. After two years of careful planning, the group agreed to purchase a lot with four and a half acres on the east side of Cline Avenue for $22,500. Douglass and the vestry launched a Land Purchase Campaign in order to raise the money for the purchase, and a mortgage was secured. Bishop Mallett blessed the land in a ceremony in April 1962.

As plans for the construction of a new church got underway, interested parishioners met for services in the cafeteria of Highland High School and used a portable altar that could be disassembled each week and stored. The vestry of St. Paul's hired the architectural firm of Bertram Weber & Co. of Chicago to design the church. The result was a striking, contemporary octagonal design of brick that was praised for its artistry. Ground-breaking for the new church took place on 17 April 1966, and as the capital campaign moved forward, a year passed before the cornerstone was laid by Bishop Klein on 16 July 1967. The building was finished at a cost of $100,000. The new mission was initially called "St. Timothy's, Griffith-Highland," with the two towns hyphenated, but later it came to be associated only with Griffith. After many years of being supported as a parochial mission, St. Timothy's became an independent parish in 1982. By the late 1980s it had about 110 families in attendance.

St. Timothy's has been served over the years by many faithful priests, including Michael Grant, Theron Hughes, John Blakslee, Jonathan Sams, Robert Deschaies, and Steven Schuneman.  When administrative costs mounted in the twenty-first century, the parish joined St. Paul's, Munster (formerly Hammond), St. Barnabas in Gary, St. Christopher's in Crown Point, St. Stephen's in Hobart, and St. Augustine's in Gary in forming the Calumet Episcopal Ministry Partnership (CEMP). Created in 2012 under the leadership of Bishop Edward Little, CEMP pooled the resources of these parishes for services by a single pastoral leader as a way of reducing administrative costs.

C. Richard Phelps, 1964
Michael Grant, 1966-1967
James S. Sigmann, 1967-1968
Theron Hughes, 1968-1974
John Blakslee, 1975-1977
Jonathan Carter Sams, 1977-1991
Robert Deschaies, 1992-1996
Steven Schuneman, 2000-2010
Michael Dwyer, 2012-2015 (CEMP)
Michelle I. Walker, 2014-2020 (CEMP)
Kristine Graunke, 2015-2020 (CEMP)
Pamela Thiede, 2020- (CEMP)
Cynthia Moore, 2020-2021 (CEMP)
Charles Strietelmeier (CEMP), 2023-

Adapted from St. Timothy's website: http://www.calumetepiscopal.org/st-timothy/about.php

St Timothy's Episcopal Church, St. Timothy's Episcopal Church, 1964-1989. Griffith: St. Timothy's Episcopal Church, 1989.

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