About Bennetts Corners UMC
We Are A United Methodist Church Founded In 1845. Our Church At The Crossroads Serves Our Lord Jesus Christ Through Preaching And Teaching The Word Of God And Through Missions, Ministry And Community.
A Brief Church History
The history of Bennett’s Corners Church actually started when a few of the settlers coming to Hinckley Township area of Ohio found that they had common religious roots in the teachings of the Methodist Episcopal Church. These settlers began having church meetings in their homes. These meetings were led by the settlers themselves using their personal Bibles and their previous experiences from the churches they previously attended.
On March 29, 1845, these founding members purchased a piece of land on the Hinckley side of Boston Road. On this land they built the first small church where they worshipped until 1868. On May 24, 1867 the congregation purchased a new plot of land located on the Hinckley side of West 130th Street for $100.00. The church still stands on that property today. It is unclear whether the original church building was moved to the new location or a new building was built in 1868.
At this time the church was served by itinerant ministers as was a common practice of the Methodist Church. These ministers traveled from one church to another to leading worship and serving the Sacraments. At times Bennett’s Corners has been “yoked” to the Cleveland, Brunswick, Hinckley, Strongsville, North Royalton, and Mount Pleasant circuits. Lay leaders and trustees led Sunday services when a preacher was not available, due to the nature of the preachers travels.
In the late 1880’s as the church’s membership grew and Bennett’s Corners became a prosperous community, the members of the church decided it was time to build a new church building. A fund for the new church was started under the Revered Jack Matthews, a young, enthusiastic, well-liked preacher. Rev. Matthews headed the fundraising campaign until his untimely death on June 8, 1891, at 31 years of age. The church fund continued and in June 1892 construction began on the new church building.
The new church, Bennett’s Corners Methodist Episcopal Church was dedicated on Sunday, October 21, 1892.
During the construction time there was disagreement among some of the church members. This group broke off and formed a Free Methodist Church on the Strongsville side of the Corners. They purchased the old church building, moved it to a new site and continued to worship there before folding due to lack of membership.
The church became the Bennett’s Corners Methodist Church following a merger prior to World War II. Between 1947 and 1968 major changes took place. A basement was blasted out from under the church with dynamite. The Bennett’s Corners Community Hall across from the church ceased to be of use to the community and was given to the church with the condition that the church add the word Community to its name. Another condition included allowing groups who met at the Community Hall to meet in the church’s basement. The Community Hall then became the church parsonage and was dedicated November 3, 1957.
During the 1950’s the sanctuary was remodeled and the first electric organ was installed. In 1962 construction began on the new education wing. The first floor was dedicated on March 22, 1964, and the second floor was dedicated in the spring of 1969. In 1968 the church was part of the merger of the Methodist and United Brethren churches and became known as the Bennett’s Corners Community United Methodist Church. This name remains to this day.