Saturday, January 12, 2019

This Week in Texas Methodist History January 13

Bishop Mouzon Preaches at MEC and MECS Churches in Brenham, January 13, 1919

My local church membership is at Brenham FUMC which is the successor church to Giddings Memorial MECS Church and 4th Street MEC Church.  Exactly one hundred years ago, the beloved Bishop Edwin Dubose Mouzon preached in both the churches on the same Sunday.   My evidence for calling him beloved is the number of preachers who named their sons in his honor.  Several of those sons named Mouzon later became Texas Methodist preachers. 

Mouzon was born in Spartanburg, SC, in 1869 and attended Wofford College.  He was admitted to the Texas Conference in 1899 and served churches in Bryan, Austin, Caldwell, Galveston, Flatonia, Abilene, Fort Worth and San Antonio (Travis Park).  He also preached in Kansas City and was professor of theology at Southwestern University until his election as bishop in 1910.  In addition to his episcopal duties, he was also founding Dean of Theology as SMU.  He presided over annual conferences form Montana to Brazil.  

In January 1919 he was a single man, having lost his wife Mary in 1917.  Out of that grief came his book Does God Care?   In August 1919 he remarried.
His Sunday in Brenham began at Giddings Memorial with a sermon, “The Personality of God.”   That night he preached t 4th Street on “Thy Kingdom Come.” 

January 1919 was an important year in MEC-MECS relations.   The two denominations had cooperated during World War I supplying YMCA staff and support.  The two denominations were in the middle of talks to explore the possibility of reunification.  The most obvious manifestation of the cooperative spirit was the Centenary Campaign.  In observance of the centennial of the first official Methodist Episcopal Church mission in 1819 to the Wyandot People, the branches of Methodism cooperated on a massive fund raising campaign for both foreign and domestic missions.   Volunteers called “five minute men” gave five minute talks to solicit funds for the mission projects.  In Brenham that five minute man was Professor J. L. Neu of Blinn Memorial College—just one block from 4th Street Church. 

Mouzon died at his home in Charlotte NC, in 1937, but his body was returned to Dallas for burial.


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