History

In the 1920s when Destin was an isolated fishing village, clergy would travel from Panama City to hold Episcopal services in homes and public buildings. In 1928 the Diocese of Florida formed a local mission board, and, after continuing to meet in various locations, the congregation erected a small wooden church building on land donated by the Maltezo family. Prior to the arrival of the Rev. William P. Erwin in 1957 as the first resident priest, clergy from Fort Walton Beach and Pensacola served St. Andrew’s.

In 1953, the congregation built a larger concrete block church which seated 250, and several years later completed the parish hall and office building. As the tallest structure in Destin for some time, the church’s steeple served as a navigation aid to those at sea, even as the church was a place of spiritual & social orientation for many in the community.

In the 1970’s the present church building and the education building were built.

In 2000 the clergy, staff, and all but about a dozen people left the Episcopal Church to become affiliated with the Anglican Mission in America. With that faithful remnant began the third and current chapter in the history of St. Andrew’s By-the-Sea Episcopal Church.

Our current full-time Rector is the Rev. R. Barry Crow, who was ordained in February, 2012 at St. Andrew’s by the Sea after serving the congregation as Deacon-in-Charge.

Since St. Andrew’s is a resort-area church, we are geared toward serving many who are here for vacations and for those staying several months during the winter. We welcome you to worship and participate in the life of this parish as part of our family whatever the length of time you are in Destin.