St Philip the Deacon Alcena Project
Accounts of St. Philip the Deacon typically begin with its founding in 1911 by a group of African-American Episcopalians of Caribbean Anglican descent. Often unstated is the legacy of racism in Portland, in Oregon, and in the Episcopal Church itself, the context out of which that audacious undertaking arose. Buying land, erecting a building, and expressing its particular call to support the black community was both a challenge and a source of pride for those stalwarts—and a strong response to having been “invited” to leave the Cathedral where most of them were members, but where they would never be allowed to share in leadership. A photo from those early days, once on display at the diocesan offices, bears the caption “Mission for Colored Work.”
As a result-We are stewarding the resources God has given us to build affordable housing for Black seniors, and to renovate our building to ensure that we can continue to live out the heart of this parish: to create and support stable community for vulnerable neighbors. We are actively applying for funding from various governmental agencies to build affordable housing, and private organizations for renovating our building and sanctuary space.