In the 1700’s, John Wesley started a movement within the Anglican Church of England. His “plain message to plain people” resulted in the formation of the Methodist Church. The Methodist Church was officially formed in the United States in 1784. Circuit riders (preachers who traveled from place to place) spread the Gospel across the new country. By the mid 1800’s, Methodism was the largest Protestant denomination in the United States. While the 1800’s saw the church divide into several separate organizations, the 20th century has seen them come together again. In 1939, the Methodist Church was formed from the combination of the Methodist Episcopal Church (South), the Methodist Episcopal Church (North), and the Methodist Protestant Church. In 1968, the United Methodist Church was formed when the Methodist Church and the Evangelical United Brethren Church joined.


The Trumansburg Methodist Church was organized on January 4, 1831. Its first church was erected at a cost of $18,000 on a lot across the street purchased from Abner Treman, one of the original seven trustees. When the congregation grew too large for this building, it was moved to Whig Street to serve as a Roman Catholic Church. The present brick building was dedicated April 15, 1857. It was accompanied by a chapel to the south, identified as a “lecture room,” which was given up when the church was remodeled in 1911.About 1959 the basement of the church was excavated to provide Sunday School space. The broad stone footing of the foundations under the supporting peers of the building still project out into the basement corridor. The organ was built in 1862 by Garrett House, Organ builder of Buffalo, New York, for the First Presbyterian Church of Ithaca, New York. It is believed to have been moved to the Methodist Church of Trumansburg at some time during the 1920’s, where, about 1929, the original pumping mechanism was replaced by an electric blower. The organ has a total of 778 pipes. In 1974 a program of improvement was launched. The sanctuary was painted, the floor refinished and the worship area changed back to its original position facing the stained glass window “Christ in the Garden.
In 1975 a Capital Funds Drive was successful in raising funds for sandblasting and refinishing the exterior of the church as well as other necessary repairs including painting the rest of the Sunday School Rooms. The rearrangement of office space for the church secretary and Pastor Bill was completed. And in January 1994 we celebrated the completion of the new elevator whose construction had been started in September of 1993.

More recently, the congregation has manifested its vitality through numerical growth and program development, in addition to further work on the building.  TUMC has enjoyed solid growth in worship attendance and church membership over the past few years, and as a commitment to our concern for mission outreach, has added a part-time “Nurture and Mission Coordinator” position to our church staff.  We encourage members in mission work both within our local community and through participation in mission trips, held every other summer. 

Over forty families within the congregation are now involved in a prayer chain ministry that received over 100 requests in 2001, and a team of nine individuals prepares and shares daily devotional messages over “The Good Word” call-in line.  A group of twelve persons form our Care and Nurture team, which works in conjunction with our pastor to visit those who are ill and shut-in.  In 2001, the most recent sanctuary renovation project was completed successfully, with new paint on walls, newly refinished hard-wood floors, reupholstered pews and an enlarged choir loft enhancing our experience of worship.



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