FUMC2

A Methodist congregation in Winchester had received the attention of the Tennessee Conference by 1813.  The first group of Methodists was organized in Winchester about 1825 under the direction of Bishop Asbury.  In 1826 they became part of the newly-formed Winchester Circuit, pastored by Rev. George W. D. Harris, brother of future Tennessee Governor, Isham G. Harris.  The first official record of the church appeared in the minutes of Quarterly Conference in 1828.

 The congregation first worshiped in a log structure before building a small brick church located near Mary Sharp College at the southeast corner of what is now South College Street and Third Avenue S.E.  The third building, occupied in 1854, stood on the corner of South Jefferson Street and Second Avenue S.E. where Sisk Cleaners is presently located.  The basement floor of this building was used as an opera house, the street-level floor was used for the church, and the third floor was used by the Masons and Odd Fellows.

 Our present Victorian worship building with Gothic elements was constructed in 1893 under the leadership of Rev. J.M. Jordan with a building committee composed of T.A. Embrey, W.H. Carmack, and Dick Taylor.  A two-story education building was added in 1950 and a free-standing bell tower erected in 1981 to hold the church bell housed in the original tall, pointed spire that had succumbed to a 1910 lightening bolt.  A replacement spire was installed on the church in 1985 and carillons were added to the belfry under the spire in 1986.  Additional property immediately surrounding the church was purchased in 1973, 1989, 1990, and 2010.  A groundbreaking ceremony for the Eugene B. Barrett Extended Worship and Spiritual Growth Center was held October 24, 1993, the new facility completed in 1994, and a note-burning ceremony held January 22, 2006.  The gym in the Barrett Building now hosts a Contemporary Worship Service, Walks to Emmaus, and Upward Sporting Events. In 2011 the church’s administrative offices occupied the renovated former General Sessions building on the southwest corner of the public square.

 The church’s membership increased from 110 in 1882 to 1,100 by 1982 and has maintained a fairly constant pattern of growth throughout its one hundred and eighty-eight year history.

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What We Believe:

 United Methodists Beliefs