The First Church Building

In 1887, a lot was purchased on the southeast corner of the intersection of tenth and Broadway Streets. 

The first Episcopal Church building was erected there at a cost of $350. The lot had been valued at $25. The first furnishings included kitchen chairs in the Nave, a wood stove, kerosene lamps and a reed pump organ in the chancel. The organ was rescued by Oklahoma Bishop Brooke from a flood on Cottonwood Creek in Guthrie.  He restored it and brought it to Shawnee.

Present Church Building

The present church building was built on the corner of Broadway and Highland and completed in 1909. The first church building was moved to the new location next to the new building to serve as a parish hall  until the current parish hall was built in 1954. The building is a red brick Gothic building. In the Episcopal Church the worship space is called a Nave. This connection to this old naval term can be clearly seen when a person looks at the ceiling of Emmanuel's Nave. The detailed wood work and large beams mimic the hull of an old large wooden ship.

The Nativity Window

The Nativity window the west side of the Emmanuel Church building was installed in 1909, built by the Ford Glass Co., of Minneapolis Minnesota at a cost of several thousand dollars. Until the 1950s it was the largest stained glass window in the state of Oklahoma. It is some 12 feet wide and 26 feet high combining an elaborate border of stained glass with its pure Gothic traceries. The symbol of the Trinity is repeated many times and in various ways in the border. The window was designed to be interesting under different light conditions. On cloudy days the blues and pinks are prominent, and in the sun the upper window glows with a diffusion of bronze, red and green.

 

The scene portrayed in the window is adapted from "The Nativity," by the German artist Barhard Plockhorst, who was born in Brunswick in 1825. The picture shows six figures against a tranquil background including, Joseph, Mary, the young child Jesus, and three worshipers thought to be the Virgin's older sister named Mariama (Aramaic) and two shepherds, one bearing a lamb as an offering.

New Addition and Restoration

In 2019 a new capital campaign was launched with the goal of restoring the 110 year old plaster walls in the Nave and 110 year old stained glass windows. Along with this project the education wing built in 1960 was torn down, and a new wing was added to the church that included a new industrial kitchen, restrooms, large spacious classrooms for all ages, a youth and family chapel and offices. The project also included a new parking lot and the remodeling and restoration of the parish hall. The architect for the project was Michael Hall of Tulsa and the builder was Greg Cullison of Shawnee. A unique feature of the new facility is the environmentally friendly Geo-Thermal heating and cooling system powered by 30 wells under the new parking lot.  

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