Saturday, November 11, 2006

This Week in Texas Methodist History November 12

Merger Creates EUB Church November 16, 1946

The Wesleyan movement of the 18th century was by no means confined to English speakers. German speakers also became part of the movement. Very soon after the creation of the Methodist Episcopal Church, two other denominations were founded on Wesleyan principles, the United Brethren in Christ and the Evangelical Association. Both were composed almost completely of German speaking communities in Pennsylvania and other areas settled by German immigrants.

There is no record of denominational activity of either the UBC or EA in Texas until after the Civil War. German Methodists in Texas were adequately served by both the MEC and MECS. As railroads made immigration easier in the 1870s and 1880s, there were a few attempts by the Evangelical Association to form churches among northern immigrant communities in Texas. By World War I churches had been founded (and some abandoned) in Galveston, Temple, San Antonio, Sherman, Post Oak, Henrietta, Bowman, Lissie, and El Campo. The United Brethren attempted to form a North Texas/New Mexico/Oklahoma Conference, but was able to have only one short-lived church in Texas, that being Middlewater in Hartley County.

Assimilation of German immigrants after World War I diminished the need for a German language church. One solution to declining membership was a merger of the two denominations. Such merger was accomplished on November 16, 1946. The new denomination was called the Evangelical United Brethren (EUB). It continued until 1968 when it merged with the Methodist Church to become the United Methodist Church.

In 1968 there were seven EUB churches in Texas that became part of the UMC. They were First El Campo, Oaklawn in Houston, First Lissie, Zion Post Oak, First San Antonio, First Temple, and First Wichita Falls. The total membership was 1,247


Post a Comment

<< Home