United Methodist Church 
of Antioch
848 Main St, Antioch IL 60002
 P (847) 395-1259   F (847) 395-4219 
Char Hoffmann, Pastor  
1st Service - 8 am
 Sunday School/Choir - 9:15 am
 2nd Service - 10:30 am - nursery care provided

The mission of the United Methodist Church of Antioch is to grow in faith, worship God following the teachings of Jesus Christ, and be instruments of God's love, through the Holy Spirit, as we reach out to our community and the world.


THE HISTORY OF OUR CONGREGATION

 

Methodism began in Antioch 136 years ago in the year 1879.  Although several families of Methodist persuasion occasionally held services when a preacher was available, our church was really organized as a result of meetings held in the old Baptist church by A.J. Bell, an evangelist.  Amana Burnett worked to establish a Methodist Church which was organized in November of 1879 with about 40 members.  Rev. W. F. Aitchison was the first pastor.  The Sunday School was also organized in 1879 with Henry Rector as Superintendent.  His daughter, Mrs. D. A. Williams, organized the Ladies Aid Society (the precursor to our United Methodist Women) in 1880.

 

In 1886 the congregation purchased the old Baptist church and property for $400.00.  The pastor at that time was Rev. A.N. Simmons.  The old church building was used for worship and many town events until its physical condition and the growth of the congregation caused Rev. E. J. Aikein to campaign for a new building in 1900.  On February 7, 1901, Trumbell & Jones of Elgin were commissioned to draw plans and specifications for a brick veneer church building to cost not more than $5,500.00.  The cornerstone was laid on Tuesday, May 28, 1901 and the Service of Dedication was held on Sunday, November 24, 1901.  This building continues to be used by the present congregation for worship.  It’s highlight are two magnificent stained glass windows, “Christ Knocking” the gift of the veterans of the Grand Army of the Republic, and “Christ in the Garden” a gift of the Epworth League.

 

The first parsonage was located on Lake Street and was purchased from John Welch, a member of the congregation, during the pastorate of Rev. W. C. Cleworth in 1905.  In 1926, under the leadership of Rev. E. Lester Stanton, the parsonage was remodeled.  On November 14 & 15, 1026, the church celebrated the 25th anniversary of the new church building and also dedicated the parsonage.  This two day celebration featured the District Superintendent, J. Hastie Odgers, and many of the former pastors.

 

During the fall and winter of 1950-51, Rev. Richard Tuttle directed a finance campaign for the building of Wesley Hall.  Ground was broken for this new addition in June of 1951 and Wesley Hall was partially finished and ready for use in November of that year.  Its completion and decoration took place under the direction of Rev. Howard Benson.  The Lake Street parsonage was sold and the parsonage at 586 Parkway Ave. was also purchased during the Benson ministry in the year 1955.

 

The 80th anniversary of the organization of the church was celebrated with a worship service and reception for long time members on October 11, 1959.  Rev. Wallace Anderson was our pastor at the time and under his guidance the church school was outgrowing its basement rooms and Wesley Hall.  More land was purchased north and west of the church building and plans were drawn for our educational wing.  At that time the parsonage at 586 Parkway was sold as there was a house on the property (842 Main St.) being purchased which would be used as a parsonage.  This was to be a temporary parsonage because long-term plans called for that house to be demolished and the sanctuary area of the church to be extended to the north.

 

During the early years of Rev. Donald Cobb’s ministry the education wing was constructed.  It offered seven classrooms, a kitchen, office space, and restrooms.  The service of dedication was held on August 16, 1964.

 

As the congregation approached its 100th anniversary in 1979, an interest in refurbishing the church was evident.  Bequests were received at this time from the estates of Mr. and Mrs. Harry Deininger, Mrs. Anna Runyard, and Mrs. Louise Hagen.  The love and concern they showed enabled the church to begin remodeling the sanctuary.  A Centennial Capital Improvement Drive was begun and further funds for this project were raised in the spring and fall of 1979,  Under the direction of Rev. Stephen Williams, George Hahn and the Board of Trustees, the pews and altar furnishings were refinished, the communion rail and choir rail were removed and the altar area opened, the Sanctuary ceiling was replastered, the Sanctuary and overflow areas were carpeted, the education wing roof was repaired, and a protective covering was placed over the stained glass windows.

 

Since that time we have installed air conditioning and completely repaired our beautiful stained glass windows.

 

To be a Christian community is to participate in a history, to share totally in the life and spirit attendant upon that history.  It is to capture a sense of not only “who we are” but “whose we are” in the deepest sense of the word.  It is to see our shared task as having roots in our local congregation as well as having a strong relationship with the Northern Illinois Conference and the world of United Methodism.

 

At the dedication of our present building in November, 1901, it was stated “Therefore, let us go forward.  May it be that future generations, reviewing the results of our work, will find it of such merit that they may say of us, “They were not disobedient to the heavenly vision.”

 

For 136 years we have served the community of Antioch and the world beyond it through our prayers, our gifts and our service.