About Us

In the year 1818, a group of pioneer Methodists met in the Edward Maxey log cabin to found the Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church, which was eventually become the First United Methodist Church of Mount Vernon. Illinois did not become a state until a month later. In June of 1819, the boundaries of Jefferson County were established, and Mount Vernon became the county seat. Thus, the state, the county, and the First United Methodist Church have grown together for nearly two centuries.

The first worship service was held in the log home of Isaac Hicks, four miles from the site that would eventually become Mount Vernon. Zadok Casey preached the first sermon as a lay preacher; in 1828, he was elected to elder’s orders.

For about a quarter of a century, the families met in homes and later in a log school in what is now Old Union Cemetery. In 1835, ground was secured one-half block north of Main Street (north of the present City Hall), and a church was built which served families until 1854 when a brick building was built on the present church property.

In February 1888, a tornado destroyed the church building but did not destroy the congregation. By December of 1888, the present sanctuary was built, complete with stained glass windows, a spire, and a pipe organ.

Remodeling and redecorating took place in 1914, 1949-50,1957 (when the present education building was added), 1972, and 1999-2000.

The ministry of Angels on Assignment was launched in 1990. Since its founding, literally thousands of Jefferson County residents have been assisted through the Angels Food Pantry, “A-Team” construction projects, and aid to persons needing help with rent, utilities, and medical bills. In 1994, the Wood Building was purchased for the ministry. Because of the ministry’s growth, in 2011, the ministry relocated to retail space on Main St.

With a great heritage behind us, the people of the First United Methodist Church look forward with great confidence and faith, seeking to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

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