The New York Landmarks Conservancy has announced 23 Sacred Sites grants totaling $294,500 awarded to historic religious properties throughout New York state, including $1,500 to the St. Johnsville United Methodist Church.
“The St. Johnsville United Methodist Church was pledged a $1,500 Sacred Sites grant toward a project to restore brick buttresses on the east side of the church,” said Peg Breen, president of the New York Landmarks Conservancy in a news release.
The land upon which the St. Johnsville United Methodist Church sits once belonged to the founder of the village of St. Johnsville, Johann Jacob Zimmerman. The building was completed in 1880 to the designs of an unknown architect. The Gothic Revival gable-fronted church sits on a foundation of locally quarried granite. The Carpenter Gothic tower is in the southeast corner and contains the sanctuary entrance in its base, along with an open belfry above. There are pointed arch window openings placed high on the facade, with additional arched windows spaced between brick buttresses, on both side elevations. The tower and sanctuary have dark gray, slate shingles on the roofs.
The church is the largest property in the village. Due to its size and location, the church has been the hub of activity for classes, picnics and programs for the community, the release stated.
The St. Johnsville United Methodist Church is the fifth United Methodist church in the Upper New York Annual Conference within the past five years to receive a grant through the Sacred Sites program. The program is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year and is the oldest and largest statewide grant program to help landmark religious properties. The program has helped more than 660 religious institutions of all denominations across New York with $7.3 million in assistance to date. The grants have leveraged overall projects totaling $497 million.
Other churches in the Upper New York Annual Conference that have received funds from the New York Landmarks Conservancy’s Sacred Sites program within the past five years include the Cooperstown United Methodist Church, which received $2,250 in 2007 for a building conditions survey and $4,000 in 2011 for replacement of the church's west side roof, gutters and downspouts.