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First Presbyterian Church of Gainesville has been proudly serving the Gainesville area since 1867. Learn more about our history here. 

Our Story

In 1860, Presbyterians in the city of Gainesville began to work together as a community of faith. A congregation of thirteen built a small wooden structure located on the corner of SE 1st Street and SE 2nd Avenue. They shared this church with neighboring Methodists, Baptists, and Episcopalians, and on March 23, 1867, they formed First Presbyterian Church of Gainesville. As the congregation grew, the members needed a larger church in order to better serve downtown Gainesville. After thirty years of sharing a church with fellow protestants, the congregants of First constructed a new building on the NE corner of W University Avenue and SW 2nd Street in 1887.

Following World War II, the Lord blessed First Presbyterian Church with a rapidly growing congregation that created a need to expand. To continue First’s commitment to downtown Gainesville, the church leaders purchased additional land in 1950 on the corner of SW 3rd Street and SW 2nd Avenue to accommodate expansion. Construction on the land began in 1954, with formal consecration of the site in March. The first Sunday after construction was completed, the entire congregation walked from the previous W. University location to our present-day sanctuary. The congregation worshiped together for the first of many Sundays in the new church. The original church bell still hangs in our steeple along with original stained glass windows and pews that members brought from the church built in 1887.

Today First Presbyterian Church of Gainesville continues to serve downtown Gainesville, honoring the intention and history of our predecessors’ values, by glorifying God, making disciples of Jesus Christ, and meeting human needs.





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