Trinity United Methodist Church
The Methodist Church is one of the oldest faith traditions in America and was first established in Virginia in 1790. The earliest Methodists met in the Henrico courthouse at 22nd and East Main Street. In 1799 the First Methodist Church was built at 19th and East Franklin Street, Richmond, Virginia. The Methodists continued to grow, and in 1828 the Trinity Methodist Church was founded. The Trinity Methodist Church continued to grow in numbers until 1857 when it divided to into two congregations, the Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church, South and the Broad Street Methodist Church.
The Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church constructed a new church building at 20 th and Broad Street, which featured Italian architecture. The church built a 225 foot slender spire steeple in 1873 that became a Richmond landmark. The Trinity landmark steeple survived storms, blizzards, and hurricanes until 1954 when it was damaged by Hurricane Hazel. It was torn down in 1955.
Dr. Joseph T. Mastin was a very instrumental individual in the emergence of the Trinity Methodist Church. Dr. Mastin served as pastor of the church when he formed the Virginia Board of Charities creating social awareness in Virginia in 1895, the Methodist Orphanage in 1899, and the Goodwill Industries in Richmond in 1921. The Trinity Methodist Church was the center for social services in Richmond during the mid 1920s and by 1938 fifteen Methodist Conference welfare agencies were operating in Greater Richmond.
In 1945, The Trinity Methodist Church moved to the corner of Patterson and Forest Avenue and on September 16 th the first service was attended by 58 members. The building was named the Trinity Chapel, and by 1955 the present brick building was completed, with the cornerstone being laid in October of that year.
As a result of the merger of three Methodist bodies in 1939 (the Methodist Episcopal, Methodist Episcopal South, and Methodist Protestant churches) and the union of the Evangelical United Brethren and The Methodist churches that occurred in 1968, the Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church, South was renamed the Trinity United Methodist Church
Trinity United Methodist Church hosts a large congregation (over 3150 members) and characterizes itself as theologically traditional. The services are traditional and contemporary with a wide variety of music during the three services held each Sunday. Sunday school classes for all ages are held each Sunday, and there are day and evening services held throughout the week.
The congregation consists of primarily middle and upper middle class families of all ages, and most members are of European descent. The church pastors are Reverend John B. Peters, Kathy Gochenour, and Judy C. Oguich. The Trinity congregation is supported by a large staff, which administers the following programs: children and youth ministries, p reschool, music ministries, and monthly newsletters. The church also is actively involved with many local outreached programs. These include music, youth and children ministries, educational schools, nursery, and preschool. The church contributes to the support of Habitat for Humanity, Congregations Around Richmond Involved To Assure Shelter (C.A.R.I.T.A.S.), Refugee Family Help, Auction for United Methodist Family Services (UMFS), and the worldwide missionary of the United Methodist Church.
Trinity United Methodist Church Website at http://www.trinityumc.net/main.htm
Profile prepared by John Lack