Guthrie First United Methodist Church is located in the historic section of our community. We are a dynamic and energized faith driven community of Christian believers. Standing upon the foundation of those first pioneers and settlers we are actively engaged in fusing our history into story by connecting people with God in life changing ways.
We have embraced a calling to love all of our neighbors and to invite them into a Christ centered relationship. We gather to worship passionately, to intentionally develop our faith, to boldly engage our community through service and mission, and to radically embrace and welcome all that enter and desire to have a transforming relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
We are a gathering of imperfect people who seek out, invite in and warmly welcome other imperfect and equally broken people. We share a commitment to connect with and lift one another up through our prayers, our presence, our gifts and our witness of God’s action in our lives and in this world. Through our shared brokenness, we seek to discover personal restoration through Jesus Christ; and to help one another become restored and devoted Christ followers.
Guthrie is Oklahoma’s First Capitol, and the First United Methodist Church in Guthrie was established on the day of the first Land Run in Oklahoma, Monday, April 22, 1889. The first worship service occurred the very next Sunday, April 28 at 10:30am. Rev E.F. Hill presided as a band and singer from a newly established saloon, and services were held under a tent.
Our current building was dedicated on March 6, 1910 and remains the center of worship and missional activity of this church today. It is part of the Capitol Townsite Historic District of Guthrie, is recognized by the Oklahoma State Office of Historic Preservation and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
Among the thousands who entered the new land to settle in Guthrie on that historic Monday, April 22, 1889 was Rev. E.F. Hill, sent by church authorities to establish a Methodist organization. During the week that followed, Rev. Hill found many interested persons, a boarding tent located on the east side of Division street in which to meet, a young man to lead the singing and a saloon orchestra to furnish music. At 10:30 Sunday morning, April 28, 1889 the strains of “In the Sweet Bye and Bye” called people from all directions to worship in the new city. Rev. Hill preached the first sermon and organized a Methodist Society. Meetings were held regularly in the boarding tent and a little later in a white frame building located at 104 West Oklahoma until, during the summer of 1889, Rev. Hill purchased four lots at 221 N. Broad for twenty-one dollars to be used as a building site for the new congregation. The first building committee completed a permanent building in the spring of 1890. Its cost was approximately $4500.00. Over the next twenty years the membership grew to 348 with a Sunday School attendance of 300, making a larger home a necessity. The current building was completed at a final cost of $55,000.00 and dedicated on Sunday, March 6, 1910. (Excerpts from the Historical Records as kept by Miss Etta Hikes and edited by Ruby May Gaffney Tryon).
In 2010 we celebrated the centennial of our historic building. Our active congregation has worshiped and served in this large, beautiful and important structure for almost a century. Today it is a part of the Capital Townsite Historic District of Guthrie, Oklahoma, recognized by the Oklahoma State Office of Historic Preservation and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Guthrie is a city that has, over the past two decades, become an important name in historic preservation, drawing many visitors every year to view streetscapes reminiscent of the turn of the 20th Century. Guthrie First United Methodist sits on Noble Avenue in the heart of “church row,” where its visibly special architectural style makes it a frequent stop for visitors on historic building tours. Our faithful congregation has maintained the building for over a century because it exemplifies aspects of turn-of-the century religious and political history through its priceless art, woodwork and architecture, and because it is our church family home.
To extend our hands, arms and feet in authentic Christian love to all our neighbors, inviting non-religious, non-active Christians and active Christ followers seeking a church connection that can become their church home. To proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ as a living word given by God for all of God’s people. To acknowledge our individual and collective imperfections and brokenness as we gather to worship and study the inspired word of God, seeking healing, restoration and salvation for ourselves, our family and our neighbors. To share joyfully in the mission of God so that all God’s people (of all age groups, backgrounds, and history) can enter into a personal and transformational relationship with God.
A Bright Future!
Here at Guthrie First United Methodist we have hopes and dreams for a promising future. We have visions of people of all ages participating in a vast number of activities promoting fun, learning, spiritual growth, compassion, and service. We also see our worship celebrations continue to share progressive, inclusive messages, and build a sense of community and involvement, while incorporating the use of both contemporary and traditional music as well as other art forms.
We have a vision for increasing the number of members at Guthrie First United Methodist. We continue to find many ways to connect with each other and to express our openness, resulting in greater diversity across gender, ethnicity, age, ability, and economic classes.
We strive to be a real gathering place for the neighborhood and for people from across our region, hosting community events, services, and learning opportunities. We work closely with other United Methodists, as well as collaborate with others of all faiths.
Guthrie First United Methodist people find ways to share our experience and knowledge to help others; supporting and caring for those on the margins of life. We are blessed to be guardians of our beautiful historic building as well as witnesses to the gospel of Christ. As United Methodists, we are uniquely gifted to bring to the world the all encompassing love, grace, and peace of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We invite you to join us for worship this Sunday. You will be blessed!