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June 1948, The Beginning

On June 3, 1948, The First Methodist Church of McMinnville, Tennessee, under the leadership of its pastor, Reverend William H. Moss, secured from Mr. Elbert Bryant the deed to a 150' X 200' piece of property containing a 16' x 45' wood frame building on lots 112 - 118 facing on Peers Street in what was known as the Anderson Addition. The purpose of this bold step was to establish a suburban Methodist Church to serve the Anderson Subdivision and its environs. Participating in the purchase were Rev. J. Dallas Bass, Rev. C.B. Cook, Rev. C.T. Carter, Judge W.G. McDonough, Stokely Adcock and John W. Nelms.

At the time that the deed was being drawn up on the Bryant property, it was discovered that in the year 1885 this same property had been purchased for a Methodist Church in McMinnville. For some reason the First Methodist Church to be built in McMinnville was located on Main Street instead of on the Peers Street Property.

On the afternoon of June 13, 1948, at 2:30pm, Reverend Cullen T. Carter, the Tennessee Conference Extension Sectretary from Nashville, presided over the organization of a Sunday School at the new location. The opening exercises were conducted by Reverend J. Dallas Bass, District Superintendent from Murfreesboro, TN.

The church was officially organized on August 11, 1948, with 15 charter members: Mr. & Mrs. S.B. Adcock, Ruby Adcock, Christine Cantrell, H.J. Allison, W.J. Eubank, Mr. & Mrs. Hubert A. King, Jr., Alton Lassiter, Mrs. Reba Lassiter, Ethel Teeple, Nora Teeple, W.G. Teeple, and Carolyn Matheny. At this first service there were a total of 41 people present, and the offering was $15.51.

Under the direction of Rev. William Moss, services were held each Sunday. The church, originally known as the Anderson Addition Church, was renamed Moss Chapel out of respect for the devoted leadership of Rev. Moss.

The first minister to be appointed pastor of Moss Chapel was Rev. R.L. Reed, who served during the years of 1948 and 1949.

The original value of the building and property were $3,500. Church records show that the largest single donation for purchase of this property was $300 with most donations in the $5 - $10 range. As a further reflection of costs in those days, the church organ cost $30, the alter $250, the chancel $125, the lectern $160 and the pews were $75 each.

Christ Methodist Church

In 1963, during the pastorate of the Rev. Macon Burke, the Moss Chapel property was sold to the McMinnville Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and, with the generous donation of Mr. M.P. King, six contiguous lots were acquired at the prominent location in the Skyline Acres Subdivision as a suitable site for a new church building. When the church relocated to the new building, it was renamed Christ Methodist Church.

It is noteworthy that while the new Methodist church building was being constructed on Chapel Drive, by Christian agreement, both Methodists and Presbyterians shared the Peers Street building.

Ground breaking ceremonies for the new church building were held Sunday, July 20, 1963. Present were District Superintendent H.T. Tipps, church pastor, Macon Burke, Reverend Virgil Tipps, pastor of First Methodist Church, and Robert Daniel who led the song service. Also included were Barry Underwood, MYF president and Mrs. Ethel Brooks, WSCS president.

Once work was underway on the new church building, it was decided that a parsonage convenient to the church was also needed. With this critera, a new parsonage was purchased two doors up the street at 206 Chapel Drive.The first worship service was held in the new church building Sunday, December 8, 1963. Church School started at 10AM, followed by worship services at 11AM. Afternoon activities included an open house at the parsonage from 1PM to 3PM. At 3PM, the church building was officially dedicated with Bishop Roy H. Short preaching and the laying of the church conerstone. Assisting in the services was District Superintendent, Reverend H.T. Tipps.

In May of 1968 the Methodist Church united with the Evangelical United Brethren Church in Dallas, TX. Since that time, Methodist churches and the E.U.B. Church have been known as the United Methodist Church, preserving the heritages of both denominations. Since the uniting conference in 1968, our church has been known as Christ United Methodist Church.

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