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Sacred Sites Tours on Tap in East Hampton

Wed, 05/15/2024 - 19:59
The First Presbyterian Church in East Hampton will have programs for visitors throughout the weekend.
Carissa Katz

The church bells in the village will be ringing more often than usual this weekend as the Presbyterian Church and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church welcome visitors on Saturday and Sunday as part of the New York Landmarks Conservancy’s 2024 Sacred Sites open house weekend.

On both days, the churches will have programs to welcome neighbors who are not part of the congregation as well as those who are.

Barbara Borsack will discuss the history of the Presbyterian Church on Saturday at 10 a.m., while at 1 and 2 p.m. Harriet Edwards, Linda Child, and Joan Osborne will focus on organ and hymn history. At 1:30 Saturday afternoon and 3 on Sunday, Donald Smith will re-enact a 1858 sermon that the Rev. Stephen L. Mershon preached at the burial of the crew of the John Milton, a vessel that was wrecked off Montauk Point. He’ll re-enact Mershon’s 1861 sermon “Causes for Thanksgiving in the Midst of the Civil War” on Saturday at 2:30 and Sunday at 2.

Members of the church’s recent mission to Cuba will discuss the trip at 3 p.m. on Saturday and at 2:30 on Sunday. Throughout the day on Saturday there will be crafts for children and coffee and refreshments in the Session House. A coffee hour will follow the regular 10 a.m. worship service on Sunday, and at 11:30 the bell choir will perform, with bells available for those who want to give them a try. Jane Hastay, the church’s music director, will offer a demonstration of the carillon at 12:30.

At St. Luke’s, visitors on Saturday can view the church’s collection of paintings by Claus Hoie, who lived in East Hampton, at 10 a.m., and take a tour of the church and learn some of its history at 2 p.m. Did you know, for instance, that the stones for its edifice came from beneath the East River in the early 1900s when the first subway tunnel was built to connect Queens to Manhattan?

On Sunday, the church will have festive services at 8 and 10 a.m. to celebrate Pentecost.

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