OUR FIRST CENTURY
In 1897, nine Santa Monica pioneers formed our church after one of them experienced a healing of consumption through turning to Christian Science. Our church was one of the first Christian Science churches on the West Coast.
Our first building was located at the corner of Oregon Avenue (now Santa Monica Boulevard) and Seventh Street. Built in the Mission style, it remained through the 1900s.
In 1911, members built a larger church at 220 Wilshire Boulevard. In 1923, they built a white wood structure at the church's current location, 505 Arizona Avenue.
The young church continued to grow, and by the early 1960s, more than 600 people were attending its services. In 1964, members began building a large edifice that could comfortably house them.
During our new building projects in 1923 and again in 1964, the Santa Monica Women's Club extended their support by providing a home for our church and allowing church services to be temporarily held in their clubhouse during construction.
When the church edifice was dedicated in 1974, the Santa Monica Outlook ran an article. Our pipe organ, manufactured by Abbott & Seiker, received special note. A renowned American manufacturer of church organs then located in Los Angeles, Abbott & Seiker led the pipe organ reform movement in the western United States.
The church's baby grand piano was manufactured by Mason & Hamlin, founded in 1854 and originally located in Boston, Massachusetts.
OUR NEXT CENTURY
By the beginning of our second century, times and needs had changed once again. In 2006, our congregation made a unanimous decision to raze the existing building and build a new church more suited to our current and anticipated future needs.
Three years later, we opened the doors of our new church complex.
A Century of CHristian science churches in santa monica. L to R: 7th and Oregon Ave (Santa Monica Blvd), 1901; 220 Wilshire Blvd, 1910; 505 Arizona Ave, 1923; 505 Arizona Ave, 1964.
During World War II, our church, together with other local Christian Science churches, maintained a Christian Science Servicemen's Center located at what is now 2230 Main Street, in Santa Monica. Across the country there were many such centers.
These Servicemen's Centers were places of spiritual respite and recreation, and were open to all men and women who served in the military. This postcard was sold at the Center.
"I attended this church as a teenager in the '40s, before my family moved out of the area.What drew me back was the members' dedication to healing and their outreach to the Santa Monica community."
— Edna C., member
Banner image: 505 Arizona Ave. 1964