Church of the Cross in Bluffton beams.
Located at 110 Calhoun Street, this historic house of worship overlooks the scenic May River.
The Church of the Cross is a Gothic Revival-style house of worship. General William T. Sherman spared the structure during the Civil War. A prominent Charleston architect, Edward Brickell White, originally designed the church in 1853.
Fanned arches with a look of palmettos top its mullioned windows that are framed by latticed shutters. The builders sent to England for the rose-colored glass in the windows. Inside, soft-pink-scored plaster enhances the warm light. Exposed pine timbers evoke power and stability. Over the years, the Church of the Cross has survived hurricanes and wars.
The church’s first service took place in July of 1857.
It has been attracting new generations of worshipers for more than 150 years. The deadly hurricane of 1898 damaged it and the rest of the building. By February 1900, repairs were finished. Workers remodeled the chancel and fashioned from the original pulpit and desk a walnut altar with a stone top, a lectern and a prayer desk. A chapel area, created in the narthex was easy to heat for the sparse winter congregation.
Bluffton’s Church of the Cross, included on the National Register of Historic Places since 1975, features heart pine siding, a cruciform interior, cathedral ceilings and pink glass imported directly from England. Fanned arches with a look of palmettos top its mullioned windows, framed by latticed shutters.
Passing through the heavy pine front doors at The Church of the Cross seems like a step into a time long gone. It’s easy to imagine the summer congregation beginning June Sundays with worship. In the two decades since The Church of the Cross grew from a mission to a parish, the number of parishioners has increased twentyfold with in excess of seventy lay-led ministries added to serve the parish and surrounding communities.
The church invites you to come, experience services and see for yourself all that The Church of the Cross offers.