Headline News
Go Back

BUMC Celebrates 150 years of service

Special to the Courier

The Bandera United Methodist Church will celebrate 150 years of mission and ministry on April 28, 29 and 30.
Starting as an open-air ministry in the late 1850s under the leadership of Daniel Rugh the congregation progressed from sermons from a wagon carried altar to the first Methodist circuit-riding preacher, John Wesley DeVilbiss in 1861 when they began to organize a formal church.
In 1867, the Bishop of the West Texas Annual Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church South (MECS) authorized the district to charter the Methodist Church in Bandera. Among the earliest members of the congregation were the Rugh, Langford, Stevens and Sandidge families.
A permanent sanctuary building for the Bandera Methodist Church was constructed in 1880 at the corner of Hackberry and Eleventh Streets. Although several additions and modifications have been made through the years, the original footprint still exists today. The church was recognized as a United Methodist Historical Site in 1987.
A stone parsonage was built next to the sanctuary in 1949, which was used for over 70 years as a home for many of the church’s 71 appointed pastors since 1867. The parsonage was sold and moved in 2016 to become a private family home.
In celebration of their rich history, the events planned for this weekend will include an Old-Fashioned Tent Revival and Gospel Sing from 6 to 8 pm on Friday, April 28. Known for his quick wit, dramatic presentations and thought provoking messages of hope and promise to all generations, Rev. Mark Winter will serve as guest preacher.
Following the revival, from 8 to 10 pm, worshippers are invited to enjoy homemade ice cream and gather around the campfire singing hymns and songs that shaped generations of faithful followers.
Saturday, April 29 will begin with a Mission Fair from showcasing the BUMC mission emphasis and activity in our community and by a Craft Fair featuring local artisans from 10 am to 2 pm. Historical Displays will be set up around the grounds to represent the history of the church and community spanning the last 150 years.
Locals know you won’t want to miss the annual Fist Fry from 11am to 2 pm or the Children’s Fair from 12 to 2 pm, featuring games and other enjoyments as well as a magic show for the youngsters.
Evening festivities will continue from 7:30 to 9 pm with a concert aimed toward youth and the young at heart with the sounds of today’s popular Christian music and culture.
A day of Worship and Celebration will be on the agenda for Sunday, April 30 starting with Worship Service from 10 to 11:30 am. Bishop Robert Schnase will provide words of greeting. The service will include messages from dignitaries and VIPs and guest preacher, Bishop Joel Martinez. Special music by the Sterling Quartet as well as works commissioned for our Hand Bell and Chancel choirs will add to your listening pleasure. Speculations indicate that John Wesley will make an appearance during the worship service along with other dramatic presentations.
The Sterling Quartet will continue to entertain the congregation as they gather under the pavilion for a Fellowship Meal from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm.
A Piano Recital by Dr Raquel Martinez will be presented from 2:30 to 3:45 pm in tribute to the Polly, Texas Schoolhouse Restoration Project.
Reminisce with friends, family and newly made acquaintances at a reception from 4 to 5 pm and reflect on the rewarding weekend provided by Bandera United Methodist Church to help us remember our historic past and encourages us to go boldly into our community’s future.