National Trust of Guyana

Ebenezer Lutheran Church

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The Ebenezer Lutheran Church is the oldest established religious Institution in Guyana and one of the oldest church bodies in South America. Some historians believed that Lutherans from the nearby Dutch Colony Surinam who had established their Lutheran Church in 1668 migrated to the Berbice area to spread their faith within the colony. Initially, Lutherans in the colony were scattered throughout the colony and usually met severe opposition from the Dutch Reform Church. Ebenezer Lutheran church is believed to have been established circa 1742, but did not gain much prominence until 1743.

On May 11, 1744, the Lutherans were permitted the freedom to openly practise their faith. The church received its first preacher from Amsterdam, Preacher Johan Kendrick, who arrived in the colony on October 15, 1752. His first church service was held on August 05, 1753 and sometime later the first church building was built. It was located on two plots of land in a small village near Fort Nassau called Nieuwe Amsterdam. The capital of Berbice was moved to New Amsterdam near Canje and Berbice Rivers in the 1790s. The church later moved to New Amsterdam to its current site, after the religious body was granted a plot of land on Strand Street and the first church to be built in New Amsterdam was completed in 1803. It is not clear how many times the church was rebuilt but in 1964, a wooden church was replaced with the current single-storey, concrete building.