Church of the Mountains celebrates 150 years in Truckee
Church of the Mountains celebrated 150 years of existence in Truckee on Sunday, ringing the church bell 150 times before a rededication ceremony in the original building.
“I like the fact that the church is still standing after 150 years,” said Pastor Donna Farrell who led Sunday morning’s ceremony followed by a community meal. “We want the next 150 years to be 150 years of total inclusion of all people.”
Constructed in 1869 shortly after the completion of the transcontinental railroad, the church served as a permanent place of worship for parishioners previously attending services in a local school house. Over the past 150 years the building has undergone multiple remodels and improvements including the construction of the bell tower in 1984.
Throughout its history the church served the community as a public school house and by renting space to the county library. It is the only church in Truckee operating at its original location in the original building, according to Farrell.
“It’s always been a key point of the town,” said Cathie Foley, administration and outreach coordinator for the church. “And it still is now.”
Farrell said the church has a history with social justice work in Truckee. Every winter the church operates the only warming shelter in North Lake Tahoe for people who may find themselves without shelter on a below-freezing, snowy night.
Last winter, over the course of 40 days of operation, the shelter accommodated 50 individual guests, according to Foley.
Not only does the organization provide shelter, but it also serves to provide opportunities to those with nowhere else to turn. This can come in the form of sleeping bags, warm clothes or necessary supplies to survive on their own or assistance with permanent solutions.
“We just want to be a welcoming presence in the community,” said Farrell.
Hannah Jones is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. She can be reached at 530-550-2652 or firstname.lastname@example.org.