‘Holy grounds' Point Washington UMC marks 125-year milestone

Published: Thursday, July 18, 2013 at 04:42 PM.

Pastor Houseman

With about 30 pastors since 1888, Harry Houseman, pastor from 1988 to 2000, wrote about those formative years in a history of the church.

On June 12, 1988, 24 people showed up that first Sunday which was listed as the 100th anniversary and “homecoming.” Only four of the worshippers returned the following Sunday, but attendance was up to 34, Houseman wrote.

"A story circulated that there was room on the pews for each congregant to lay down and stretch out. Oh well … shouldn’t folks be comfortable at church? The time was a-coming that we couldn’t put them in with shoe horns!"

Being a tourist and snowbird community, attendance would vary from service to service, and many of its members had service jobs and worked Sundays.

"We have many retirees whose families are scattered across the fruited plain, but with their pledge to attend every time they could, we began to fill the pews."

After Houseman’s arrival, membership reached 47 by the end of 1988, and by 1994 was up to 116. In 1997, the rolls grew to 196 and more than 270 by 2000, with all bills paid and no indebtedness. Today, membership stands at 507.

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