HISTORY: From the year 1881: St Mary's Academy to present day Holy Trinity Anglican Church

A Brief Chronology

A bird's eye view of the original St. Mary's Academy

1881. The Sisters of Mercy had come to Silver City at the invitation of the local priest to start a school, which by 1915 had more than 100 students. The Mercy Sisters turned over Our Lady of Lourdes Academy to seven Sisters of St. Joseph of Tipton, Indiana., and their superior, Sister Mary Magdalen Thomas, in mid-1915. Aug. 26, 1915, they incorporated as the Sisters of St. Joseph of Silver City. They operated St. Joseph’s Hospital and sanatorium for three years while teaching school at the Academy, until financial hardships determined that the sanatorium be sold.”


. Early in the year, the sisters bought the 10-room Mission-style adobe home that the late Aubrey F. Lee had constructed in 1906 on the northwestern outskirts of town” at what is now 1801 N. Alabama St. That fall they opened St. Mary Magdalen’s Academy, a boarding school for girls. Monsignor William Wright purchased the neighboring Rufus Jackson mansion at 1809 N. Alabama St. and donated it to the Sisters of St. Joseph to serve as a dormitory for the boarding students. It was the largest private residence in Silver City when it was built in 1910, and was renamed Marian Hall. Wright’s parsonage called the “Joseph House” was built between the two older homes in 1918.

1922. Fire destroyed the Lee house, the main building. The sisters rebuilt their convent, school and the current chapel, and their numbers never grew to more than 21 sisters in 1923. Financial hardship required Sister Magdalen to affiliate with another community of Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia.

The 10-room Mission-style adobe Aubrey F. Lee mansion, center of picture, was destroyed by fire in 1922..
The building to the far left served as the high school.
Marian Hall is pictured to the far right.

A new chapel was constructed with an attached dormitory.
Students relaxing on the front lawn.

January, the 26th, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Silver City and their properties in New Mexico officially merged with the Concordia community.

From the late 1920s and ‘30s, St. Mary’s Academy, served as a boarding school and eventually a high school.

Marian Hall became El Refugio

1940s. St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church opened another parochial school that was staffed by Sisters of St. Joseph. 

1966. St. Mary’s and St. Vincent de Paul merged into one parochial school. 

Mid-1970s. The landmark buildings on Alabama Street housed a birthing center. In 1973, a lay board took over the combined school and operated it until 1980.

Late 1980s. Marian Hall became El Refugio, a shelter for victims of domestic violence.

1990. The Guadalupe Montessori School moved to the St. Mary’s campus. 

2006. The Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia celebrated their 80th anniversary of service in Silver City.

A Brief Chronology

The Rev. Winfield Mott came up from Deming to “plant” a new church under the reformed Episcopal Church Diocese of the West.

The new congregation was established and met at the now privately owned old Presbyterian Church, which had become a rental property. It styled itself “The Church of What’s Happening Now.”  After much discussion, Chris Eng, a founding member of the new church start, suggested renaming the congregation Holy Trinity Anglican Church, and the name was accepted.

2010. The Rev. Win Mott had been consecrated Bishop Coadjutor of the Reformed Episcopal Church. He arranged for its Synod be held at Holy Cross Retreat Center, in Las Cruces, where Bishop Boyce recognized Holy Trinity Anglican Church of Silver City as a “Mission Parish.”

The Right Reverend Winfield Mott
2011. Negotiations began toward the purchase of the property at St Mary’s Academy. Bishop Win Mott moved became Vicar General of the Diocese in Formation, which would become the Anglican Diocese of the Southwest, under the umbrella of the Anglican Church in North America.
Deacon Eng
After a year of focused study, Bishop Mott ordained Chris Eng’s wife, Joan, to the Diaconate.  She would become the deacon-in-charge of Holy Trinity.

2011. Father Henry Hoffman, the rector of St. Augustine’s in Deming, took the reigns at Holy Trinity.

               The Rev. Henry Hoffman

. In May, the Anglican congregation began meeting in the chapel of St. Mary’s.
Bishop Win Mott met with the John Price, a conservative who left the Episcopal Church. Bishop Mott, and Rev. Harold Trott of Albuquerque, encouraged him to start a mission in Truth or Consequences.  Father Henry Hoffman was assigned by Bishop Mott to oversee John and the mission. Father Henry traveled once a month to Truth or Consequences to give Holy Communion.

The sign announcing the meeting time and contact numbers for
"All Saints Mission," a house church in Truth or Consequences, NM.

2014. Holy Trinity formally purchased 3.7 acres of the property of St Mary’s Academy. A ceremony was held to "transfer the Light" from the Catholics to the Anglicans. This included the chapel with the attached convent dormitory building, the Joseph
House, and Marian Hall.
In December 2014, Bishop Mott ordained John Price to the Diaconate. mottprice Father Henry resigned from St Augustine’s, and Deacon John became an itinerant minister serving All Saints mission in Truth or Consequences, and St. Augustine’s in Deming. Father Henry left the Diocese of the West, joined the Anglican Diocese of the Southwest, and Holy Trinity also became part of the diocese under the governance newly elected Bishop Mark Zimmerman.

. mark
    The Right Reverend J. Mark Zimmerman
Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of the Southwest
of the Anglican Church in North America

2015. During Clericus, at Holy Cross Retreat Center for Franciscan Spirituality near Las Cruces, NM, Bishop Mott ordained John Price to the Priesthood. Fr. John would continue to temporarily serve as supply priest for various area congregations within the Reformed Episcopal Diocese of the West.
Bishop Mott performing the ordination of Fr John with assistance of Deacon Eng.

Father Yossi Sarid, was installed as rector of St. Augustine’s in April. Father Henry resigned as priest at Holy Trinity. Father Yossi temporarily filled the vacancy at Holy Trinity.

2016. In March, Father John became rector of Holy Trinity. All Saints mission had been absorbed by a “Continuing Anglican” diocese out of Georgia, and Father John‘s traveled to Holy Trinity, every other week. Deacon Joan did a deacon’s mass every other Sunday. In October, to insure that Holy Trinity would not lose the chapel and retreat house, it sold Marian Hall and the Joseph House to a private owner thereby relieving two hundred thousand dollars of its debt; the balance of forty five thousand dollars IS owed to a parishioner who loaned it to pay off the mortgage, to be paid back over the next seven years. Holy Trinity is debt free to the financial institutions.

2017. In July, Father Yossi Sarid resigned from St. Augustine’s. Its vestry invited Father John to become rector with the encouragement of Bishop Mott and the approval of Bishop Zimmerman. As rector for both Holy Trinity and St. Augustine’s, Father John began to do a 286 mile circle from Truth or Consequences to minister in Deming in the morning, and Silver City in the afternoon. He modified their worship schedules when Deacon Joan of Holy Trinity, and “Deaconess” Myrna Parker of St. Augustine’s agreed to conduct a deacon’s mass every other Sunday, while Fr. John alternated his travel between churches every other Sunday.  

In January, Father John Price informed the congregation of St. Augustine’s of his intention to retire at the end of the school spring semester, and move to Silver City to serve the congregation there, full time. Ash Wednesday of 2018 was Deacon Joan Eng’s last service, which was a sad day in February for Holy Trinity. Chris and Joan Eng moved to Colorado Springs the following week. In June, Deaconess Myrna Parker and her husband moved from Deming to the State of Washington. Father John put Thomas Guerra as Deacon-in charge over St Augustine’s. Officially retired from public school teaching in July, Father John and his wife moved into the Joseph House, the original parsonage next door to Holy Trinity’s chapel.

The congregation at Holy Trinity celebrated its 10th anniversary on September 16th.
              The Joseph House - parsonage