History of the Parish

Hope Church
Hope Episcopal Church was the sixth Episcopal Church established in Lancaster County and is the fourth oldest still in existence. The Grubb family of nearby Mount Hope Estate was responsible for the establishment of Hope Church. The first of the family to come to America was John Grubb from Cornwall, England. His son, Peter, was a pioneer in Pennsylvania manufacturing. Peter discovered iron ore in Lebanon and built the Hopewell Forge and Cornwall Furnace. Peter’s great grandson, Clement, was baptized by Bishop William White at the Mount Hope mansion. This baptism is believed to be the first Episcopal service conducted in the Mount Hope area.

The Church Building

The Church building at Mount Hope was founded and built by Harriet A. Grubb, Clement’s mother. Construction began in the summer of 1848, but, delayed because of a labor dispute, was not completed until the next year. The Church was consecrated on Saint Luke’s Day in October of 1849 by Bishop Alonzo Potter and named Hope Church. Originally built as a fairly simple structure, it was enlarged and extensively remodeled at the turn of the century by Clement’s daughter, Daisy. The building is of native sandstone in the architectural style known as Early English Gothic and is considered to be an architectural gem and was named to the National Register of Historic Places in 1991. It was cited as being “one of the finest of all Gothic style Churches in a non-urban setting surviving in Lancaster County.” This small jewel contains tile and marble from Belgium, wood from Italy, white limestone from Normandy, and five exceptional stained-glass windows, three of which are Tiffany windows. We are truly blessed to worship in this place of holy beauty. A cemetery containing many old tombstones, a columbarium, and the Grubb family vault surrounds the building.