Our History

It all started . . .

early in 1947, with a small group of devout Episcopalians determining that a new permanent church was a worthwhile venture in Palatine (the nearest church being St. James’ in Dundee).  


On May 23, the name, St. Philip’s was chosen by popular vote and plans were drawn. 


On September 21, 1947, 64 parishioners attended the first Confirmation and Eucharist of the St. Philip’s congregation In the Masonic Temple with Bishop Conkling officiating.


May 29, 1948, the groundbreaking ceremony on our corner of Schubert and Wood Streets took place with 122 present, Bishop Conkling presiding.


On September 12, 1948, Fr. Rob Roy Hardin was named first Rector at St. Philip’s, performing the first service in  what is now our Foote Library on March 6, 1949.  After three weddings in less than two years, his final service was on November 26, 1950.


On March 4, 1951, Fr. M. R. Becker became the second Rector for one year.


On June 1, 1952, Fr. Sheldon B. Foote was installed as Rector who would, with local Architect Charles Klopp and Pepper Construction Company, oversaw the construction of the “new” stone, 180 seat sanctuary and nave.  The work was completed late in 1957, with 104 parishioners celebrating our first Christmas.



Our Pastors

Fr. Rob Hardin                              1948-1950

Fr. Michael Ray Becker               1951-1952

Fr. Sheldon B. Foote                    1952-1985

Fr. Dru Green (interim)               1985-1987

Fr. Michael Philips                        1987-1995

Fr. Thomas Janiec                        1996-2008

Rev. Lisa Graves                             2009-2012

Rev. Laura Gottarde-Littell         2013-2015

Fr. Jimmy Swarthout (interim) 2015-2017

Fr. Jim Stanley                               2017-2022



Explore St. Philip’s

Stained Glass window in narthex is created of slab glass, blue radiating from the cross, at the center of which is a chalice and Host, the Eucharistic symbols.  The lower window is curious in that the Hand (Father) is on the right instead of being central.  According to the artist, the descending Dove (Holy Spirit) unifies the design.  The Lamb, of course, represents Christ.  The basket and fish represent the Feeding of the 5000, an occasion at which Philip is present and speaks.  It is also a Eucharistic symbol, echoing the chalice and Host above.


The dark blue and violet slab glass radiate from the cross in the north wall continue along the side walls and gradually brighten with all the colors of a rainbow to livelier, sunnier, lighter hues as they approach the sanctuary, bathing the altar in shimmering gold light.


The Lady Altar with kneeler and devotional candles is a solemn place for private veneration and intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, depicted in the framed mosaic.


In 1991, a Mosaic Artist, recommended by the Art Institute of Chicago, was commissioned to design a mosaic pattern on the floor to coordinate with the stained-glass windows and to create a sense of water flowing around the Baptismal Font, the initiation into Christian life.  The Font was designed and built by Conrad Schmitt Studios and is a memorial to Thomas Petersen.  The Baptistery is a memorial to Esther Burns.  The mosaic floor tiles flow onward in the Christian journey toward the Word of God, expressed from the Pulpit, and on to the Eucharistic altar and Crucifix.


Stations of the Cross along the side walls are brass images of Christ’s Passion on square walnut plaques.


The Granite Altar contains a reliquary with a relic of St. Donatus which was donated to St. Philip’s by a Benedictine Monastery in England, in memory of Stanley Pepper, 1957.


Above the Altar is the large central Crucifix.  The hand-carved three-foot tall white wood corpus, from Oberammergau, Germany, expresses both the suffering and nobility of Christ.  The corpus is secured on a black wood cross from St. Louis, on which decorative golden triangles which may suggest the flames and smoke of candles and incense which symbolically carry our prayers heavenward.  The triangles are repeated in the tabernacle, candle sticks and the Paschal candle.


The heavy bronze canopy over the altar represents heaven above; the 13 stainless steel stars suggest the 12 disciples and Jesus.  The artist used an undulating design, also carried into the sanctuary, to contrast with the severe straight lines of the building.


The colorful seasonal banners and needlepoint kneelers were handcrafted by church members in the 1960’s.


The bronze Tabernacle was hand crafted in the Italian city of Pietrasanta, Italy, near Piza.  It was originally designed to be centered at the rear of the altar.  The swayback top was to create a visual base of the Crucifix directly above.  The eight enamel-over–copper triangles are design elements repeated in the Crucifix, the Altar Candle Sticks and the large Paschal Candlestick.  The interior of the Tabernacle is gold-chased.  When the altar was moved forward for the priest to face the congregation, the Tabernacle was moved to the side table.


In back on the left side is a Columbarium installed in the 1990’s for internment of members.  This is established in memory of Agnes A. and Quentin K. Ford.


In 2011, an elevator was installed in memory of Grace Pepper Garrett.


The Courtyard on the north central portion of our lot is a sacred place with trees and other vegetation planted in memory of many beloved parishioners.  The brick paved patio with fountain and stone bench are a memorial to Rob Burns, a St. Philip’s son who served our country in Desert Storm.  The area is carefully tended daily by Bill Burns.



Historical Highlights



09/21/1947       First service conducted in Masonic Temple by Bishop Conkling.  Confirmation service with 64 people.

03/27/1948      First Easter Evening service.  35 people present.

05/29/1948      Ground breaking for new building at 4 p.m.   Bishop Conkling presiding.  122 people present.

09/12/1948      Fr. Rob Roy Hardin becomes the first rector.

02/27/1949      Final service in Masonic Temple.  36 people present.

03/06/1949      First service in new building.  Bishop Conkling presiding.  80 people present.

02/04/1950      First wedding at St. Philip’s.  Mr. Thomas English & Miss Roberta Huugerford.

02/15/1950       Second wedding at St. Philip’s.  Mr. Charles Blake Jr. & Miss Nell Barrowman.

06/24/1950      Third wedding at St. Philip’s.  Mr. Len Goland & Miss Carol Pepper.

11/26/1950         Father Hardin’s final service.

03/04/1951        Fr. Michael Ray Becker becomes 2nd rector.

03/24/1951        Easter Evening service has 13 Baptisms.

03/02/1952        Fr. Becker’s final service.

06/01/1952         Fr. Foote becomes 3rd rector.

07/05/1953        Bishop Conkling resigns.

05/08/1954       Thirty-one trees planted.

06/10/1957        Excavation for new building begins.

12/21/1957          Final service in old building.  45 people present.

12/22/1957         Fist service in new building.  104 people present.

09/21/1958         Bishop Burrill dedicates new building with 104 in attendance.

03/29/1959        Easter Day.  First time attendance surpasses the 200-attendee mark.  210 people  present.

03/14/1963        With Bishop Montgomery present, four services are held.  Morning Prayer and three Eucharist                                            services  for a total attendance of 526.  To date best attendance recorded.

04/18/1965        Easter Day —  Three services conducted setting all-time attendance figure of 586.

01/17/1968          Fr. Foote installed as Dean of Elgin Deanery.

09/26/1971         Bishop Burrill’s final visit to St. Philip’s.

10/01/1972          Dedication of belfry and bells.

07/31/1973         MP/HC service recorded in studios of radio station WJJD for later re-broadcast on August 8th & 26th.

10/03/1975         Faith Alive weekend held.  34 attendees on Friday; 46 on Saturday and 185 on Sunday.

03/09/1977        First time Third Order of St. Francis meets here.

06/01/1985         Farewell Eucharist for Fr. Foote.  Bishop Montgomery celebrates, 312 people in attendance.

09/02/1986        Fr. Phillips celebrates first service as the 4th rector of St. Philip’s.

05/01/1987         Fr. Mike Phillips installed as rector.

02/26/1995         Fr. Philips’ final service.

03/01/1995          Fr. Krogman begins as interim rector.

07/04/1996        Fr. Janiec’s first service

09/03/1996         Fr. Janiec installed as 5th rector

10/01/1996           50th Year Committee holds first meeting.

09/12/1997         Parishioners celebrate their 50th Anniversary Celebration at Watercress Banquets in Palatine.



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