Church of the Purification, 1883

Sharon, GA – Taliaferro County – Church of the Purification is Georgia’s oldest Catholic Church, dating back to 1790. The ancestors of famous authors Margaret Mitchell and Flannery O’Connor worshiped here, as well as Alexander Stephens.   I was surprised to learn that the first Catholic church in Georgia was established here, and not in Savannah!

The present church was built in 1883, and the Locust Grove Academy was moved to this site.  There’s a historic marker out front with details.

Historic Marker in front of Church of the Purification.

I was excited to visit this old church, as only open on special occasions.  The huge windows really let in a lot of light here – hard to get a sense of scale looking at a photo,.

Interior View

Truly a beautiful space.  A lot of work has been done recently to stabilize the church, and preserve it for future generations.  A quick video view of the interior of the church:

While the church moved to Sharon in the 1880s, the old cemetery is nearby,  down a dirt road.

Down a dirt road outside Sharon, Georgia
Church of the Purification Cemetery outside Sharon, Ga

The parish house is privately owned and not part of the church property.

Parish House, Church of the Purification

Church of the Purification in Sharon is truly a beautiful place, and I’m so glad I had an opportunity to visit.

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