The story of St. Martin’s begins on October 24, 1950, when The Reverend Mark T. Carpenter, then Rector of All Saints Parish in Ft. Lauderdale, received authorization from The Rt. Reverend Henry I. Louttit, the Bishop of the Diocese of South Florida, to start a mission in Pompano Beach.
The History of St MArtin
On January 2, 1951, St. Martin’s became an organized mission of the Diocese of Southeast Florida, and in the same month the Vestry of the new mission was chosen. The first Vestry of St. Martin’s Church was composed of Horace P. Robinson (Sr. Warden), Horace P. Robinson (Jr. Warden), A.J. Musselman, Jr. (Secretary), Eugene C. Hedges, Ernest Wooler, John B. Trumbull, Lynn B. Timmerman, and John Olah.
How did we get our name? A small wooden-frame church was floated down the Intracoastal Waterway from Jupiter to Ft. Lauderdale to become the first house of worship for All Saints Parish. That church had been called “St. Martin’s Church”. When the people in Pompano wanted to form a congregation under the guidance and leadership of All Saints, the people of All Saints requested that they call themselves “St. Martin’s Church” to perpetuate the name of their original church. Therefore, when the congregation was chartered under the laws of the State of Florida, its corporate name was and remains to this day St. Martin Episcopal Church, Pompano Beach, Florida.
During the 60s and 70s, our buildings became the focus of community youth gatherings. The popular “Teen Town” helped nurture many Pompano youths also inspiring Jako Pestorius who founded the nationally acclaimed rock band, Weather Report, as many local teenagers came together for music and fun.
We gave birth to St. Nicholas Parish on Sample Road in 1961. St. Laurence Chapel and the Broward Children’s Center were also begun here during this time.
Over the years five priests have served as Rector. With the migration to western parts of the county and other societal changes affecting traditional religious norms, St. Martin joined other churches that experienced a down-sizing of its membership. As we could no longer support the upkeep of our aging buildings and seawall, our only option was to sell our property and hear God’s call to be Church in another Pompano Beach area.
Today we are excited to answer that sacred call in our temporary home on 2nd Street, welcoming the opportunity to be “a church on the move” and leading the way in times of change in our community and the world. As we have since our earliest days, we warmly invite and welcome all who wish to discern and answer God’s call and mission for this faithful congregation, worshiping together as a people seeking to follow Christ’s commandment to love one another—no exceptions.