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Our Beginning



Waverly United Presbyterian Church began as a Sunday School in the home of Miss Lavinia M. Smith.  With the need for a church apparent to the community, the philanthropy of George and Mary Peebles allowed for the construction of a small chapel on Waverly Lane in October of 1882. This building was Waverly’s first home.  Fifteen years later, the congregation would move to its second home on the corner of Waverly and Peebles Avenues in 1897, just blocks from our current location.

In the 1920’s the size of the congregation required a larger and more accommodating space for worship. Under the pastoral leadership of the Rev. Thomas Pears, Jr., a new building was planned for the corner of Forbes and Braddock Avenues. It was at this juncture in time that the stock market crash and the ensuing depression threatened this vision. The members of the congregation banded together, however, taking out second mortgages on their homes, and hosting dinners every Thursday for one dollar per meal in order to pay for the church.