In 1840, the Mill Hill district (then known as Littleworth, Kingsbury and Kensington Hill) was incorporated as South Trenton. It was in 1842 that the First Presbyterian Church of South Trenton, to be renamed the Second Presbyterian Church of Trenton, NJ, was founded.
The congregation built a church and on May 15, 1843 reportedly “purchased” or received a bell from the “Lady of William R Hansom”, the first bell in South Trenton. When the church began to grow in size, a new facility was needed. The congregation found a sufficient piece of land on the corner of Mercer and Market Street which they purchased for a modest fee of $5,500.00, from the Joseph Y. Launing Estate. The members laid the first cornerstone for the church on June 29, 1904. The church was completed and dedicated on March 9, 1905.
The grand structure was built from quarried stone, complete with pillars, intricate crystal chandeliers, and delicate stained glass windows. The building was erected with a large enough space for growth in family size and intent to start a small bible school.
On November 11, 1919, a fire burned the back half of the church, causing estimated damage of $30,000. Unfortunately, the church was insured for an amount between $9,000 and $10,000. The church altar and other losses suffered were eventually restored. The Second Presbyterian Church remained housed at this location for many decades before eventually selling their church and merging with Faith Presbyterian, now known as Westminster Presbyterian.
Fortunately, the hands of the church’s successors, the Greek Orthodox, preserved, improved upon, and documented, many of the artistic treasures. There were statues, murals, and a hand carved alter made of olive wood. Some of these treasures have remained in the possession of the Greek Orthodox Church and some will be recovered and restored to the Mill Hill Church of God sanctuary.
Our church has inherited a rich history having ownership of the first bell in South Trenton. We are also home to the many pieces of salvaged hand carved chairs, podiums, and pews dating back to the late 19th century and early 20th century from St. Ann’s Church. Many little-known facts about our church and its neighborhood have yet to be found.
The year 2005, marked the 100th year celebration of the establishment of this edifice. In the year 2000, Mill Hill Church of God celebrated its 50th church anniversary. In April, 2007, the Mill Hill Church of God was renamed Life Abundant Church of God. The congregation has launched a progressive effort to restore and revitalize the church building to its original splendor. The project is complex and includes the restoration of its historic bell. With the combined effort of the church and the community, this powerful structure can soon take its place as one of the most magnificent architectural features of the city of Trenton.