History

The initial meeting to organize Westminster Presbyterian Church was held December 3, 1939 at St. Agnes School with the Rev. Frederick W. Haverkamp and 15 people attending. The church was formally organized in the auditorium of the George Mason School on December 15, 1940, with 38 charter members. The first building on the corner of Cameron Mills Road opened in 1942, with the sanctuary constructed where our chapel is now located. Rev. Haverkamp departed in 1943 and was replaced by Dr. Clifford R. Johnson, who would lead Westminster through an incredible period of growth over the following 27 years.

In 1952 the current sanctuary was constructed to accommodate the growing congregation. The cornerstone for that building was laid by then President Harry S. Truman – a singular honor for Westminster.

A large education building opened in 1961 to provide adequate space for Sunday school classes and music facilities as well as additional office and meeting areas. Always striving for musical excellence, Westminster installed a new Moeller organ in 1965 and hosted a dedicatory recital performed by virtuoso Virgil Fox, of the Riverside Church in New York City.

The Westminster Preschool was established in 1975 to serve families in our congregation and in the community at large by providing outstanding educational opportunities for young children. It continues to thrive in newly renovated classrooms.

After Rev. Johnson’s untimely passing in February of 1970, the Rev. Donald A. Campbell was installed July 11, 1971 and served until his passing in July 1979. The Rev. Dr. George Pera was installed September 28, 1980 and served 16 years until his retirement in 1995. The Rev. Dr. Stuart Broberg was installed February 1, 1998 and served until 2003. The Rev. Dr. Larry Hayward was installed on November 7, 2004 and currently serves as our head of staff.

In 1992-93 and 2006-07, the church underwent major renovations, during which the sanctuary was made into a more useable space for worship with better acoustics, the library, nursery and staff offices were moved, new building maintenance systems installed, and better handicap accessibility provided.

Although there have been many changes since Westminster was founded, the current congregation remains as enthusiastic and energetic as their predecessors, with a deep commitment to helping their fellow members, the community, and the wider world.