Space Age Christianity: The Diocese of Olympia and the Seattle World's Fair Part 2
As a follow up to my previous blog on the Seattle World’s Fair – The Century 21 Exposition which featured the ‘Space Age Christianity’ forum, I thought I’d see if I could find additional information on how our diocese and its congregations participated in the Fair.
Seattle, St. Paul - All Saints' Chapel (postcard)
The first thing I came across was the fact that St. Paul’s Episcopal Church located just three blocks north of the fairgrounds was officially designated by diocesan convention as the Episcopal parish for the Fair. Conveniently located for visiting worshippers, a postcard featuring St. Paul’s All Saints’ Chapel was distributed with service times listed on the card.
Seattle, Sp. Paul - All Saints Chapel (postcard)
It is interesting to note that the original 1903 church building adjoining the chapel was razed on July 21, 1962 – during the Fair - and the construction of a soaring contemporary ‘Space Age’ church structure was then begun.
The Olympia Churchman, March 1963
The building program, given impetus by the parish’s “Fair” designation and anticipated growth in the area was explained by St. Paul’s rector, Fr. John B. Lockerby in this way: “This area of the city, especially now that Seattle’s World’s Fair rises three blocks from us – to be followed by park and community center buildings – will continue to grow in strategic importance and use. So build we must and build we will…”
Fr. Lockerby’s view of the Fair and of the civic progress to follow was a common one and one that was largely fulfilled. Many would say that Seattle truly came into its own as a major city as a result of Century 21.
Seattle, St. Paul's Episcopal Church - Today
The diocese made another major contribution to the Fair through its support of Christian Witness in Century 21, Inc. and the Christian Witness Pavilion which I’ll discuss in my next blog post.
Diocese of Olympia Archives
Diane Wells, CA