|United Protestant Church is a lively and loving congregation of approximately 150 members of all ages. We are known for being "family-friendly" and offering excellent music and preaching in our worship services. The real center of our life together is the love of God, and we hope you will join us as we figure out what it means to be disciples of Jesus Christ.|
History of the United Protestant Church
When it became certain that the Federal Government was to plant a Colony in the Matanuska Valley in Alaska, the Home Missions Council (an interdenominational group) assigned the religious care of the colonists to the Presbyterian Church USA. The Presbyterian Church sent the Rev. Bert Bingle of Cordova to Palmer to organize a Protestant church work. Mr. Bingle arrived at Palmer May 6, 1935 ahead of the colonists. By the next Sunday the colonists had arrived and the first tent church service was held with thirty-five persons present.
Under the direction of the pastor, work was immediately started on a Community hall where civic and religious groups could meet regularly. However, religious services were held in the new hall only a short time when sickness entered the valley and several children died. A doctor arrived the next day after the outbreak of sickness and the Community hall became the Colony's hospital. Services were held thereafter in the homes of the people and finally in a separate tent. It was here that plans were made to formally organize a church and in August 1935, $500.00 was loaned to build a manse. The manse was ready by November 1st. On November 24th a church council was established, a constitution was drafted, and the church named. In 1936 a loan of $1,500 was made by the Presbyterian Church and work started on a permanent church and manse built out of logs. The men and women of the church worked tirelessly through winter months to build this church.
On April 11, 1937 "the church of a thousand trees" was dedicated and the Presbytery of Yukon installed the Rev. Bert J. Bingle as the first pastor. Our congregation very much enjoys our history and the buildings that have been passed on to us from the founding generation.