Saint Stephen's Church (Negombo)

St. Stephen's Church is an Anglican church situated in Negombo. It was consecrated on 31 July 1879, by Rev. Bishop Reginald Stephen Copleston.
Saint Stephen's Church, Negombo
Saint Stephen's Church, Negombo

St. Stephen's Church (Sinhala: ශාන්ත ස්ටෙෆාන් දේවස්ථානය) is an Anglican church situated in Negombo in Gampaha District, Sri Lanka. It has been built on the top of a hill by the side of the Negombo Lagoon.


Following the collapse of the Kandyan Kingdom in 1815, Sri Lanka fell under the rule of the British. In 1863, J. David was posted by the British administration as an Anglican clergyman in the Negombo area (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009). When the Anglican community wanted to establish a place for their religious activities, a church was started to construct within the Dutch Fort of Negombo. By 1877, the chancel of the church was ready and the place was opened for worship before its formal consecration (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009). On 31 July 1879, the church was consecrated by Rev. Bishop Reginald Stephen Copleston (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009).

The Church Building

Built in the Gothic revival architectural style, the exterior of the church building is apparently simple (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009). The roof of the church building is covered with flat clay tiles and a small stone cross is fixed at the top of each end of the ridge tiles (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009). The interior space in the church measures 20 m by 7.3 m including the passage (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009). Although the walls are tall and thick, the interior of the church building is well-lit by some windows.

A Protected Monument

The St. Stephan Christian Church in the Courts Road, Negombo in the Grama Niladari Wasama No. 156A North Munnakkaraya in the Negombo Divisional Secretary’s Division is an archaeological protected monument, declared by a government gazette notification published on 30 December 2011.

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Books, Government Gazette Notifications

1) De Silva, N.; Chandrasekara, D.P., 2009. Heritage Buildings of Sri Lanka. Colombo: The National Trust Sri Lanka, ISBN: 978-955-0093-01-4. p.74.
2) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. no: 1739. 30 December 2011. p.1093.

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