Top Churches in San Francisco, California

Religious

Top Churches in San Francisco

Since there are over 500 churches in San Francisco, we have curated the top churches in the Bay Area. From iconic churches like the Saint John Coltrane African Orthodox Church and the Calvary Presbyterian Church, there are the newest churches to the oldest most unique ones.

Here is the list of 11 Top Churches in San Francisco, California

1. Calvary Presbyterian Church, Fillmore St

Calvary Presbyterian Church, Fillmore St

Formally recognized as a congregation in July 1854, the Calvary Presbyterian Church is located on Fillmore Street in San Francisco. The current building was built in the Revival and Edwardian styles. The church has taken extensive measures to be eco-friendly. Calvary has a stellar reputation for being a very welcoming community. Their church services are filled with chamber and choral music, and they regularly have full orchestral performances by professional musicians in the area. Check out their evening services every other week with jazz performances.

2. Fourth Church of Christ, Scientist, Funston Avenue

Fourth Church of Christ, Scientist, Funston Avenue

The former Fourth Church of Christ, Scientist is a historic Christian Science church in the Richmond District of San Francisco. Christian Science is considered a sect of Christianity. It was founded as a return to the original beliefs of Christian healing through prayer. The building was designed by architect Carl Werner in the Classical Revival style. By 2009, the following had declined and the building was sold to the Internet Archive.

3. Swedenborgian Church, Lyon St

Swedenborgian Church, Lyon St

One of the first privately owned buildings to be designated a landmark, the Swedenborgian Church is a product of the 19th century Bay Area radicals. The building aims to bring the thriving nature from outside to the inside. The legendary landscape painter, William Keith, painted four murals of the changing Californian seasons on the north wall. The roof of the church is held up by eight large untrimmed tree trunks from the Madrone Trees of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Instead of standard pews, there are 70 handmade maple chairs, with no nails. Check out this marvel of natural architecture in Pacific Heights.

4. Episcopal Church of St. John the Evangelist, 15th St

Episcopal Church of St. John the Evangelist, 15th St

A super friendly and eclectic church, the Episcopal Church of St. John the Evangelist welcomes all minorities. Although its origins date back to the 1850s, the original neo-Byzantine basilica was deconstructed during the San Francisco earthquake and fire of 1906 only to be replaced by the current Tudor-style building three years later. Located in the neighborhood of Castro, it has attracted a large LGBT membership and is now known for its advocacy. Its food pantry, known as Julian’s Pantry, opens its doors every Saturday. This church is a haven for all minorities and all people who have been discriminated against.

5. St. Paulus Lutheran Church, Eddy Street

St. Paulus Lutheran Church, Eddy Street

St. Paulus Lutheran Church was founded in 1867 by Jacob Buehler, the ‘Father of Lutheranism on the Pacific Coast’. Originally built in the French Gothic style, the church suffered a huge fire in 1995 following which the congregation has lived a more nomadic life. As the membership of the German immigrant church steadily grew, they kept outgrowing their premises. Currently, they are located on 1541 Polk Street. The church is committed to a ministry of music, accommodating music into their sermons. The collaborative spirit of the church has caused it to contribute heavily to the San Franciscan community around it. St. Paulus Lutheran Church is the place to be for community service.

6. Saint John Coltrane African Orthodox Church, Turk Blvd

Saint John Coltrane African Orthodox Church, Turk Blvd

Fulfilling the famous jazz saxophonist John Coltrane’s wish of becoming a saint, the Saint John Coltrane African Orthodox Church uses music in its services in a truly modern way. It uses sound to baptize its members, rather than the traditional baptism. Situated in the heart of Filmore District, known for political action, community healing, charity, and anti-racist work, the Saint John Coltrane African Orthodox Church is a people’s church.

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7. Presbyterian Church in Chinatown

Presbyterian Church in Chinatown

One of the few Chinese Presbyterian churches in San Francisco, it's the oldest Asian church in any Christian denomination on the continent. They offer services catering to various communities in English, Mandarin, and Cantonese. The church uses both traditional and contemporary music along with its services in order to preach to its members. It runs many sports summer programs like basketball and volleyball for both youth and adults. The church is very active in its community and supporting of various social issues like the LGBT community.

8. First United Lutheran Church, Turk Blvd

First United Lutheran Church, Turk Blvd

The First United Lutheran Church of San Francisco was first established in 1886, and is one of the first Lutheran congregations in California. Like many churches in California, the First United Lutheran Church incorporates many musical settings and forms into its traditional Lutheran ideals. The church believes in complete inclusion in both forms of worship as well as diverse communities. It was even ousted from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America in 1990 for its decisions to ordaining both openly gay pastors as well as female pastors. Currently, the First United Lutheran Church is a nomadic congregation and now meets in the St. Cyprian’s Episcopal Church near the main campus of University of San Francisco.

9. Mission United Presbyterian Church, 23rd St

Mission United Presbyterian Church, 23rd St

Trinity Presbyterian Church, also known as the Mission United Presbyterian Church, was built in the Romanesque Revival and Shingle styles. It's one of the few Percy & Hamilton buildings to survive the 1906 earthquake. The spire of the church along with St. John’s Lutheran Church contributes to the skyline of the famous Capp Street in the Mission district.

10. Glide Memorial Church, Ellis St

Glide Memorial Church, Ellis St

The Glide Memorial Church is a Methodist church located in San Francisco. The church was known for its conservative beliefs till the 1960s after which it became more liberal in its support and membership. The church has a huge community program and is constantly helping out with the community around the area. It has a diverse and eclectic congregation. The church is renowned for its gospel choir and its various musically led sermons.

11. St. John's Presbyterian Church, Lake St

St. John's Presbyterian Church, Lake St

St. John's Presbyterian Church is a historic church in the Presidio Heights neighborhood in the northern Richmond region. It was constructed in the Gothic Revival Shingle style in 1095. The origins of the church date back to 1866. The church constantly runs a different charity and volunteering programs. St. John’s is a huge advocate for immigration policies. Their friendly spirit welcomes everyone across different communities.

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