A rich history and living mission
The Episcopal Church at Princeton (ECP) was founded in 1867 when The Rev'd Dr Alfred B. Baker––rector of Trinity Church, Princeton, and 1861 graduate of Princeton University––endeavored to more intentionally extend the parish's outreach to the campus community, founding what was then called the St. Paul's Society.
Baker's vision was not just to engage the sacramental and pastoral needs of students, but also to enlist an up-and-coming generation of leaders in the work of the church for the common good––including planting mission parishes throughout New Jersey, which met the practical and spiritual needs of thousands.
Shortly after Baker's death in 1914, Bishop Paul Matthews (5th Bishop of New Jersey, 1915-1937, and 1887 graduate of Princeton University) and Mrs Elsie Procter Matthews undertook to solidify the growing ministry among students, faculty, and staff at Princeton University by purchasing the property that has housed the chaplaincy since––Procter House, 53 University Place. The couple also generously endowed a foundation (the William A. Procter Foundation, in honor of Mrs Procter Matthew's late father: onetime president of Procter & Gamble Co.) to support the chaplaincy at Princeton along with our sister chaplaincy at Rutgers University.
A century and a half later, as one of the oldest and largest chaplaincies in The Episcopal Church––and now encompassing students, faculty, and staff at Princeton University, Westminster Choir College, and Princeton Theological Seminary––ECP continues to form a new generation of emerging leaders and faithful disciples ready to extend the ministry of the church the common good.