The first church building of a local Methodist Church was built in 1848 at Concord Corners in Smith Township. The distance of this location from Franklin-Union (Churubusco’s former name) prompted a new congregation to form and begin meeting at a school building on South Main Street in Franklin-Union.
At the end of the Civil War in 1865, a decision was made to erect a church on North Main Street to handle the population growth (part of this building housed the former Bible Believer’s Church, & now Christ Community Center).
The new church - established in Churubusco approximately in 1874 by three returning Civil War soldiers – Thomas McGuire, Abe Krider, both Euro Americans, and Jesse Keene, African-American - was home to three congregations: The United Brethren, Methodist Episcopal and Baptist. Eventually the Methodist Episcopal and Baptist congregations relocated. Those assigned to work with the Methodist congregations were circuit riders and later ordained ministers.
In November 1917 the Methodist congregation (later to be named Faith Methodist Church) moved to a modern brick building located near the center of town. Currently this building is home to St. John Bosco Catholic Church. The United Brethren and Episcopal churches survived through the depression and many other difficult times due to strong faith and dedicated parishioners.
In 1939 the Methodist Episcopal, Methodist Episcopal South and Methodist Protestant churches merged to form the Methodist Church. Seven years later, the Evangelical United Brethren Church was formed when Evangelical and United Brethren churches merged.
By 1956, the buildings that housed the Faith Methodist Church and the Evangelical United Brethren congregations were becoming too small to house their growing needs. The Evangelical United Brethren congregation moved to the north edge of Churubusco at a site that would allow for continuing growth. In November 1960, a dedication was held for the new education unit, which included classrooms, a kitchen and a fellowship hall. At that time the fellowship hall was used as a sanctuary, pending the construction of a sanctuary for this congregation.
The Methodist Church was also making plans in 1960 to undergo expansion, remodeling or relocation, whichever seemed to best coincide with their financial situation.
In 1968 the answer for both churches’ expansion needs evolved. After much study and careful planning, the Evangelical United Brethren and the Methodist Church merged to form the Churubusco United Methodist Church. The new church would be located at the north church site, 750 North Main Street.
On a Sunday in January 1971, a ceremony commenced with the north church members marching downtown and uniting with the Methodist members. A farewell service was held at the Methodist Church and the new congregation along with Nazarene and Catholic congregations marched back to the north church for a uniting ceremony.
The cornerstone for the present sanctuary of the Churubusco United Methodist Church was finally laid in September 1974. One year later this new addition was dedicated.
As time has moved on, many ministries have developed. One of the most notable is the food program.
This ministry had a small beginning that started around 1997 when the 55+ Sunday school class knew of persons in need and would collect groceries from class members & take the food to their home. Currently, the Food Pantry has daily appointments thru the week as families are supplied with food for one month.
The Food Giveaway began approx. late 80’s early 90’s when Ron Morris would collect food, and maybe once a quarter or a couple times a year would line the hallway into fellowship hall with tables filled. Today this is a weekly Tuesday event.
The Food Pantry and Giveaway are now serving an estimated 1200+ families annually.
Another notable program developed thru music. Around 1996-97 even though there were 2 traditional worship services, it was decided to make the 1st service traditional and the 2nd service contemporary, praise band & vocalists. This started with contemporary music on the 1st & 3rd Sundays of the month but soon was every Sunday & has continued to inspire.
Most recently, on Sunday, April 22, 2018, CUMC celebrated the 50th anniversary of the merger of the Methodist & Evangelical United Brethren denominations becoming United Methodists. Indiana UMC Bishop Julius Trimble was our guest speaker at both services with many former pastors and/or families attending. Following the services, there was a carry-in meal in the fellowship hall with a 1968 style show presented by our youth. During the month of April, many activities were scheduled including a 5K run-walk-stroll, displays of history, recognition of members for 50 or more years, a Unity Walk to the former church buildings, etc. (similar to the walk in 1971).
Churubusco United Methodist Church continues to strive to be vibrant applying our Vision & Mission statement:
“Making disciples of Jesus Christ for the Transformation of the World, by providing H.O.P.E.