History of the Seymour United Methodist Church
People first had prayer meetings in their homes. Circuit Rider Preachers would stop in once or twice a year. Small groups of settlers would form a church. School houses or town meetings were places of worship.
Five churches existed in 1860’s and early 1870’s in the town of Seymour. They were the Congregational, Methodist, Catholic, Lutheran and Evangelical United Brethren. In 1882 the Evangelical United Brethren formed a mission which included North Seymour, Cicero and Pittsfield. They would have annual conferences together. The early Methodist Episcopal Church located north of Seymour was started around 1868. They were organized into classes (Osborn, Lime Rock and Seymour). When the railroad came to town the church was moved to the center of town in 1865.
Rev. Franklin Block stated: “Where there is no vision the people perish. I am thankful to pastor a church where the people are not afraid to dream big dreams and have visions. At the time of our union of our congregations, the thought of a new facility was only dimly on the horizon.”
Two churches formed side by side, each with over 100 years of traditions. St. Paul’s Methodist Church from 1865-1968 with 31 pastors serving. Rev. Donald Dinsmore was the last pastor to serve from 1964-1968. Along with the Zion Evangelical United Brethren Church from 1881 – 1968 with 22 pastors serving. Rev. Franklin Block was the last pastor to serve from 1965 – 2002.
On June 2, 1968 these two churches united to form the United Methodist Church of Seymour. On July 10, 1977, the congregation walked several blocks to break ground for the new church building in its present location.
May 14, 1978 was the consecration of the Seymour United Methodist Church. April 30, 1978 was the first Worship Service and Confirmation Class of the Seymour United Methodist Church.
History of Cicero United Methodist Church (condensed)
In 1881 in the Township of Cicero a small group of Evangelical believers gathered together for services, which were held in the homes of Sylvester, Schmeichel, Thiel and Zick to the Gospel message preached by the itinerant minister Rev. F. Dite. In the following year, 1882, they organized their little Evangelical group and in 1883, on land given by Carl and Maria Thiel they raised a church; and Articles of Incorporation of Immanuel Church of Cicero, Outagamie County, WI, Evangelical Association of North America were drawn up.
25 years after building their church they saw a need to build a new church; and in October 1907 the present church building was erected at the cost of $5,000 when Rev. Herman Koten was pastor. Since 1881, 24 pastors have served the congregations, Rev. Rebecca Henry being the present pastor in 2009. Mergers changed the name of the denomination from Evangelical to Evangelical United Brethern to United Methodist. God has bless the little congregation for over 100 years, and it is the prayer of the faithful He will continue to allow it to serve the community for over the next 100 years.
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