The Presbyterian Church has existed in the United States since the early 1600’s. Moorings Presbyterian was organized on November 3, 1966 as a member of the Presbyterian Church in the United States, the “Southern Church”. The Presbyterian Church split into north and south during the civil war and while reunion was often discussed, it did not happen until 1983 when as a result of reorganization we became part of the Peace River Presbytery, Synod of the South Atlantic, Presbyterian Church (USA).
In 1964 the Presbytery of the Everglades decided that a church was needed in rapidly growing Naples, FL. They asked the Rev. David C. Moss to leave Miami and form a congregation on the west coast of Florida. He was the perfect person for the job, friendly, outgoing, and passionate about this new church. On November 14, 1965 the first worship service was held in the music room of Naples High School with eight people (five of them Mosses) This first meeting place would prove to be prophetic as music has become a very important component of MPC.
86 members attended the ground-breaking for the new sanctuary where the first service was held on June 12, 1966 and officially dedicated on November 27, 1966. As the church grew in both membership and program it became necessary to consider additions to the building. Sunday School rooms were added as well as a nursery, a small kitchenette, and choir rooms. In 1971 a wing was added to the west side of the building and in 1978 to the east side. Over the years more buildings were constructed as program needs required, a fellowship hall, parlor, christian education building, music center, columbarium, and chapel. In the 2000’s both a new fellowship hall (Moss Hall) and a new sanctuary were added to the campus.
In January of 1975 David Moss unexpectedly passed away following heart surgery. The congregation was bereft but carried on the mission of the church. After an interim period the Rev. Dr. Charles S. Webster was called and growth of both membership and program continued.
Music has always had an integral part in the life of MPC, and the leadership of Dick and Martha Crofts as Minister of Music and Music Associate (who served from 1980 to 2013), largely built the robust music program that continues to this day. New choirs, both children and adult were added. Bell choirs started with children in the fourth grade and continued through adult. Every Mother’s Day, the elementary age choir presented a musical based on a Bible story. In 1983 the Hyacinth Series began and has been bringing world class musicians to MPC ever since. These concerts are enjoyed by both church members and people throughout the community.
In 2008, thanks to the generosity of the Marjorie Sterritte family a pipe organ was installed in the sanctuary. About six years later a bequest from Ruth McNeal enabled the addition of the solo division. A Fazioli grand piano was added thanks to donations from many individuals.
The various programs of the church are too numerous to list; some began with the origins of the church and continue to this day. Others met a particular need and flourished for a few years then died away. Through the various changes we remember the words of the Reverend Dr Charles Webster, “Except the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain that build it”.