July of 1950 marked the beginning of what would later become Asbury United Methodist Church. Not having a permanent meeting place, the group of dedicated and enthusiastic Christians constructed a brush arbor on Wood Street. Using benches, an organ, songbooks and folding chairs borrowed from area churches, we met under the arbor on July 18, 1950, with the Reverend Earl Kiefer preaching. At that point, we became known as the “Brush Arbor Group”.
With the benches needing to be returned after the third Sunday, new benches were built and in place for the next Wednesday’s prayer meeting. The Brush Arbor Group was renamed Asbury Methodist Church at the first quarterly conference on September 24, 1950. Jefferson Davis School became Asbury’s temporary indoor meeting place, but the group continued to meet under the arbor whenever weather permitted.
A permanent building was always the dream of the congregation, which had rapidly grown to 95 members. This dream became a reality when the church purchased the land at 1919 North Elm Street in January of 1951. The cornerstone was laid in May of 1952 with Rev. Frank Barrow officiating.
Membership began to grow at a steady pace creating the need to expand the church facilities as early as 1955…eventually leading us to our current place of worship at 117 Hercules Lane.