By 1965, Grace Church was dealing with membership and finance issues; St. John's was in relatively healthy condition but its growth was hampered by its obscure location and lack of space. Realizing the benefits of joining together, St. Alban's was born, and on April 4, 1965, St. Alban's held its first service in the building that had been the home of Grace Church.
When soldiers were sent to Alban's home to capture the priest, Alban changed clothes with his guest and gave himself up to authorities in his stead while the priest escaped. When it was discovered that Alban was an imposter, he was whipped and condemned to be beheaded. Before his death, he was given the opportunity to be spared by denying his new Christian faith and worshiping the old gods, but Alban refused.
In honor of Alban, we celebrate his selflessness and bravery every June 22.
Initially, there were several Episcopal churches scattered about in the Bay City area; of those early beginnings, only two survive today. St. Alban's was created with the merger of Grace Church, which was established in 1885 ,and St. John's mission, which came into being in 1882.
Saint Alban was the first martyr of England, his homeland. During a persecution of Christians, Alban, himself a pagan, hid a priest in his house. The priest made such a great impression on him that he converted to Christianity.
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