Our Mission & Vision
What We Believe
Our mission is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. Our vision is to make God real by loving, connecting, and serving just like Jesus.
As disciples we love God with all of our heart, soul and mind, and love our neighbor as our self. (Matthew 22:36-40)
We believe the scriptures of both the Old and New Testaments are the inspired word of God. (2 Timothy 3:16-17) We believe the Holy Spirit guided and directed human authors to create God’s written means of communication with us, which reveals God’s love and plan to be in relationship with all of humanity. The Bible is God’s blueprint for living the Christian life and is our source for faith and practice.
We believe in one God, who exists in three distinct persons…the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Each person of the Trinity is equally the one God in being, essence, character, power and eternal qualities.
We believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Savior who came to earth in the flesh to reveal God to humans and to restore all of fallen humanity to a personal relationship with God. We believe Jesus was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary; he is both fully human and fully God. Jesus lived a perfect, sinless life and embodies the truth about God and the Truth of God. Jesus willingly died on the cross to demonstrate God’s love for sinful humans and to provide salvation for all humanity.
His sacrifice in our place provides all humans the means to be reconnected with their loving Creator. We believe in the physical resurrection of Jesus from the dead. Jesus ascended into heaven, where he rules as our Lord (absolute authority) and advocate. Jesus will return to earth in the future to establish God’s perfect peace and justice for all time.
The Holy Spirit
We believe in the divine personhood of the Holy Spirit as an equal part of the Trinity. The Holy Spirit is God present, living within each follower to empower a life that reflects the lifestyle, values and character of Jesus. The Holy Spirit is the change agent in the lives of Jesus’ followers, illuminating God’s word for understanding and application in the life of each. The Spirit is involved in progressively transforming each follower into the image of Christ, and is actively working within the Christian community and world at large to bring about God’s plan of redemption for all people and all creation.
We believe the Church (also known as the Body or Bride of Christ in scripture) is a spiritual organism made up of all those in a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ, who are called to live in fellowship and worship together. We believe in the priesthood of all believers: everyone in relationship with Christ is gifted, empowered and called to serve within God’s mission to reach the world. The Church is God’s vehicle on earth to bring about God’s justice and mercy for all people.
The History of Pittsboro United Methodist Church
Pittsboro Methodist Episcopal Church was founded in October 1834. It was the first church building erected in Pittsboro in 1836 on Lot 2, Block 2. Simon T. Hadley, one of the founders of the town, offered this lot to any denomination that would build a house of worship. Archibald Alexander, one of the charter members sawed the lumber for the church in his water mill on his farm south of town. It was a tiny log room with greased paper windows and pews made of logs split in half with peg legs, warmed by a huge fireplace. Brother Pointer was the first preacher. He was a circuit rider and only preached about once every three months. Funerals, weddings and christenings were postponed until he came. Reverend Enoch Wood served as the first full-time minister.
In 1868, the church moved a short distance to the northeast corner of North Maple Street and Main Street and was remodeled at a cost of $2 000. In 1878, Rev. Isaac Patch held a great revival, which remained in the memories of the members for many years. In 1891, Rev. Horace Ogden a distinguished speaker, held another revival. In 1919, the building was remodeled again at a cost of $6,000 during the pastorate of Rev. S.A.P. Reakes.
In 1936 the church observed its centennial year. Throughout the year the church held services of remembrances. One service performed by the women of the church was the re-enactment of the dedication and sacrifices of the early members. The final service was a homecoming service.
In April 1968, the United Methodist Church was formed when the Evangelical United Brethren Church and the Methodist Church united. It was at this time that the church was given its present name, Pittsboro United Methodist Church.
In 1975, an event of importance took place when a new church was built on East Main Street and the body of the church was moved from the historic site of the first church. The church continued to grow and reach-out to the community and in 1979 John Crick, April Boyer, and Linda Scherer started the Pittsboro United Methodist Preschool with 12 children. Currently, the Preschool employs 5 teachers, 1 secretary and 135-140 children go through the program every year.
A new era started in 1983 when PUMC welcomed its first female minister, Reverend Kathy Kinser. She served with us until 1987. In 1992, the present building was remodeled. Due to tremendous church growth, an addition, including a new fellowship hall, Sunday school and Preschool classrooms, was added at this time. In 1994, PUMC hired its first full-time youth director.
PUMC has had the pleasure of worshipping with 36 different pastors during our 169-year history, with Pastor William Nickrand and his family serving with us presently.
We enjoy worshipping together, singing and praying together, being a part of each other’s lives and a part of the larger family of faith in Pittsboro. We share special worship services at Thanksgiving and Easter with the Christian church in town and work together during Vacation Bible School. Together we are the family of faith in Pittsboro: One part of the body of which our Lord is head.
A History through Food
PUMC has a rich history of fellowship through food. The church started putting on an annual Pioneer Supper when World War I ended in 1918 in remembrance of Armistice Day. The ladies of the church planned and prepared the meal. They dressed in old time dresses and served the food family style. The men cleared the tables, washed dishes and helped in the kitchen. When the dinner became too large to be served at the church, it was moved to the old high school and the food was prepared in the Home Economics rooms. The menu consisted of Pan Chicken, Homemade Chicken and Noodles, Fresh Ham, Potatoes, Turnips, Slaw, Great Northern Beans, Cooked Cabbage, Applesauce, Homemade Pies and Cakes, Bob Groover’s Homemade Bread, Homemade Butter, Apple Butter, Jellies and Jams. This was a lot of hard work, but well worth the effort. The Fall Pioneer Suppers came to an end during the early 1970’s and gave way to the Fall Harvest Smorgasbord. The idea was similar to that of the Pioneer Supper, but on a smaller scale.
The ladies of PUMC organized Rural Mail Carrier Dinners. This dinner was held every month on the second Monday and was for all the Rural Mail Carriers of the county. This was an opportunity for them to share a meal and fellowship once a month. It is unclear when these meals started, but they came to an end before the church moved to its present location. The menu changed every month and the ladies served anywhere from 15-36 mail carriers. A menu from November 1972 consisted of Ham Loaf, Chicken and Noodles, Mashed Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Corn, Harvard Beets, Asparagus Casserole, Apple and Cranberry Salads, Cottage Cheese with Pineapple, Lime Jello Salad, Relish Tray, Fruit Salad, Cookies, Pumpkin Pie, Dutch Apple Pie and Filled Pies.
The ladies of PUMC also planned and prepared Election Day Meals. Three meals were served on this day, Breakfast, Lunch and Supper. These meals were put on primarily during the 1970s. There were two townships at this time (the town and outside the town). PUMC served the township outside of town. Most of the dishes, silverware, cookware and the long tables were paid for from these meals. The menus for Election Day, May 1976 were as follows: Breakfast was Sausage Gravy and Homemade Biscuits, Butter, Apple Butter, Strawberry Jam, Coffee and Orange Juice. Lunch was Fried Chicken Mashed Potatoes, Escalloped Potatoes, Green Beans, Slaw, Rolls, Butter, Pies, Coffee and Tea. Supper was Ham Sandwiches, Potato Salad, Relish Plate, Fruit Salad, Jello Salad, Chocolate Cake, Tea and Coffee.
The church was also well known for its annual Fish Fry and monthly Crusader Class dinners.