- Date of Consecration
- 1876 - 12 - 27
- Galle Archdeaconry
- Revd. H.N.T. Fernando
The early history of St. John’s Church, Kalutara, was the subject of an interesting address by the Rev. Dr. G.B Ekanayake at the parish social given in connection with the Diamond Jubilee of the Church at the Kalutara Town Hall.
“The first move to build an Anglican Church at Kalutara, Dr. Ekanayake said, was made on 26 July, 1858. Bishop Chapman during a visit to Kalutara wrote on that date asking Government for a site for a Church as follows:-“ On behalf of the very respectable congregation numbering between 60 and 70 persons assembled yesterday for Divine service both morning and afternoon in the Court House at this station. I have the honour to request that your Excellency will kindly grant a site for the erection of a Church for their accommodation.”
To this, the Governor, Sir Henry Ward, replied on 12 August, 1856, to the effect that when the Government was informed of the amount of the local subscription towards the proposed Church at “Kalutara”, there would probably be little difficulty in granting the site for its erection, but that it was unusual to give the land without some previous assurance that there would be funds sufficient to erect a Church. Before and after those letters, the services were held in the Courthouse 1867 when the request for a site was renewed by Bishop Claughton, the Successor of Bishop Chapman.
After the site was granted there was again an interval of seven years during which very little was done.
Some subscriptions were promised but they were not called in. But in 1874, Mr. A Young Adams came as District Judge and there was a revival of interest. The promised subscriptions were collected. In some cases double the promised amount was paid. In December 1874, the foundation stone was laid by Mrs. A. Young Adams. There were some interesting and humorous references to the way in which the furnishing and the building of the Church was promoted between the years 1876-1894.
The Kalutara correspondent to the “Ceylon Examiner” wrote on 15 December, 1874:- “ A very young Procter, Mr. Francis L Daniel from Colombo, who narrowly escaped being drowned here whilst crossing over to the maze has presented a font to the new Church, on which has been written “ caution to young men:- Beware of crossing over to the maze in company with the owner of the Bungalow, which goes by that name. His zeal for the Church is so great that he will not hesitate to duck the very best fellow he can lay hold of, if he can thereby gain his great object of getting a donation for the Church.”
Dr. Ekanayake then proceeded to trace the subsequent history of the Church till its consecration on 27 December, 1876.
The Church, which is situated in an ideal position, is a landmark of Kalutara. It was built and consecrated on 27 December 1876-The feast of St. John-when Rev. Duthy was Vicar.
- Postal Address
- St. John's Church Galle Rd Kalutara, Sri Lanka