The History of Gethsemane United Methodist Church
And Three Became One
In the fall of 1967, Woodlawn Methodist Church and the First Evangelical United Brethren (E.U.B) congregations agreed to unite as a single congregation. On Sunday, January 7, 1968, during a blizzard, the Woodlawn Congregation met at their church in a caravan to the E.U.B Church, located at 823 Park Street.
The Rev. Gary Hakes, pastor of Woodlawn Methodist Church, and The Rev. John Wilcox, pastor of E.U.B Church, conducted worship services and ministry together until July 1968, when Rev. Wilcox retired. Services continued at the Park Street building for four years while planning and reconstruction took place on the former Woodlawn site at Butternut and Harold Streets. The site was enlarged by purchasing some adjoining property on both streets.
The stained-glass window on the front of our building, brought from E.U.B Church, inspired our congregation to name the church Gethsemane. The name was given on Sunday, May 26, 1968.
In 1970, the First Ward United Methodist Church on Bear Street desired to unite with Gethsemane. The first worship together was on June 28, 1970, and the legal union took place on June 4, 1970.
Sunday, March 21, 1971, marked the first Sunday of worship in the new building. On Palm Sunday, April 4, 1971, Bishop E. Ralph Ward Jr. preached at the church's consecration, led by Dr. Wright, the District Superintendent.
A dedication service was conducted one year later. In 1975, the property became available on Butternut and Berkshire. The church decided to purchase it, use it as income property, and provide for future expansion if needed.
In 1982, the church building was updated. The temporary siding was replaced, a more functional roof was constructed, and insulation was installed. On December 31, 1990, our mortgage was paid in full, three years ahead of schedule.
In the spring of 1994, it was decided that the rental property be torn down, and additional parking space be provided.
Gethsemane has been fortunate to have leaders who have guided us through good and troubled times. They remain in our memories.
Meet Our Team Staff
Rev. Andy M. Anderson
Rev. Anderson has been the pastor of Gethsemane United Methodist Church since July 1st 2015.
Deborah Dunn, has been our Administrative Assistant for over six years. She manages the office and helps in the diaper distribution ministries every week.