Albertson's History

Dr. Isabelle MacDonald, founder of Albertson Memorial Church

The Albertson Memorial Church was established May 15, 1936.  Its founder was Dr. Isabelle MacDonald, a successful chiropractor in Stamford.  Initially, Dr. MacDonald met with a small group of spiritually oriented people in her home.  The purpose was to pray for those in need and to develop the God potentials within themselves.  Others wanted to join and this led to the founding of the church by Dr. MacDonald, who later became an ordained minister.  The church was named after one of her teachers in spirit, Dr. Albertson.

The first church building was at 13 Spring Street in Stamford.  Larger space was soon needed and 485 Summer Street was purchased where the Reverend M. MacBride Panton served as minister.  He was followed by the late Reverend Raymond E. Burns who served as minister for twenty-three years. 

 Cornerstone of Albertson Memorial Church, originally home of the Old Greenwich Presbyterian congregation.

Cornerstone of Albertson Memorial Church, originally home of the Old Greenwich Presbyterian congregation.

In 1967 the Summer Street building was sold and the present church building purchased.  The church was constructed in 1894, and had previously served a Presbyterian congregation. Spiritualist Services have been held in the church in Old Greenwich since the spring of 1968.  In January 1970 due to the pending retirement of Mr. Burns, an invitation was made to and accepted by the Reverend Melvin O. Smith and the Reverend Dorothy Wynn Smith to serve the church as husband and wife ministers, which they did until both of them passed to spirit in 2004.  We now have different guest ministers who serve our church for the Sunday service each week.

Rev. Ray Burns, pictured at the front of Albertson Memorial Church, circa 1970.

 Rev. Melvin O. Smith, Pastor 1970-2004

Rev. Melvin O. Smith, Pastor 1970-2004

Rev. Dorothy Wynn Smith, Pastor 1970-2004

The Albertson Memorial Church is affiliated with the National Spiritualist Association of Churches and the Connecticut State Spiritualist Association and attracts people of all denominations. The worship format is similar to that of other non-Christian churches but with one important difference—a demonstration of spiritual communication is given at each Sunday service, which is held at 11 a.m.  The Services are conducted by a variety of visiting ministers and includes a time for hands on healing during the service.  Spiritualism honors all faith traditions and draws on the wisdom of the World’s Great Religions.  Apart from the Sunday services, the work of the church includes development classes, lectures by prominent speakers, private counseling and social activities. We welcome people of all cultures and beliefs.