History Of Liverpool First United Methodist Church
WE ARE CELEBRATING 200 YEARS IN 2020!
In 1820, eleven persons formed a “Methodist Society” in Liverpool. This small group, with those who joined them, met in homes until about 1836, when they began to worship in the Union building which stood in Johnson Park surrounded by a cemetery. The lower story was used for the public school and the upper story for a meeting room, which was open to people of all denominations.
The religious needs of the Society were supplied by circuit riders, the courageous and dedicated preachers who traveled by horseback to spread the Word of God to the Methodist societies located in the towns and wilderness areas of early America. They met with each society as often as possible.
In 1841, the Methodists purchased the Union building after the other denominations built churches of their own, and moved it to a site on Second Street where it stood until 1994. The male members of the society resolved to be called the First Methodist Episcopal Society of Liverpool. Rev. Joseph H. Lamb became the first resident minister of the society.
The society built a new church in 1856 on Oswego Street, which is the front brick portion of the present sanctuary. From 1872–1873, the edifice was completely renovated when meeting rooms, a library, and a kitchen/dining room were added to the rear of the church. In the sanctuary and narthex, eight beautiful stained glass windows were installed, each with a religious symbol at the top: Burning Bush, Descending Dove, Chalice, Ark of the Covenant, Lamb of God, Crown, Open Bible, and The Cross.
In 1877, our pastors assumed the responsibility of ministering to the members of the Church at Cold Spring (also known as White’s Chapel) at the intersection of Route 370 and Doyle Road. This association between the two churches continued for more than forty years.
(Left) 1928 Liverpool United Methodist Church compliments of Liverpool Public Library Schuelke Collection
In 1995, the church celebrated its 175th anniversary of service to the Liverpool community. Building renovations completed in 2003 allow for more gatherings for worship and fellowship than ever before, and the kitchen renovation completed in 2008 provides even greater opportunities for fellowship and fundraising.