Three Oaks United Methodist Church
Thursday, January 20, 2022
You Are Welcome!

Our History

Early Methodists, then known as Methodist Episcopals, first came to our area in the 1830's  They originally met together in homes.  The first such meeting of record was held in the fall of 1833 at the home of Whitman Gait.

In the years following, Methodist Episcopal churches were formed in Indiana just over the state line at Posey Chapel, Lamb's Chapel, and Maple Grove.  As more and more people moved north into Michigan, plans were made in the 1870's to construct a church in Three Oaks.  This building was completed in 1878, incorporating beautiful windows made in LaPorte, Indiana.
Our church has stood at the corner of Elm and Sycamore Streets ever since, though there have been many changes made to the original structure.  In 1919, an annex was added to house the pastor and his family.  In 1939, the Northern and Southern branches of the Methodist Episcopal Churhes united with the Methodist Protestant Church to form The Methodist Church.  In 1968, The Methodist Church merged with the Evangelical United Breathern Church (EUB) to form the United Methodist Church.  In 1978, the annex was demolished and a new education wing was erected in its place.  This addition still houses our church offices and Sunday School rooms, as well as a rehearsal space for our choir and a parlor for meetings and informal gatherings. In 2001, an elevator was installed to provide handicapped accessibility for all of our programs.
In 1989, our church, as well as the Village of Three Oaks, served as the backdrop for several scenes in the family holiday film "Prancer".  For more details on that event, click on the "Prancer, the Movie" link on the main menu.

Pastors that have served Three Oaks United Methodist

Methodist Episcopal Church
1868               Pastor Woodman
1868-1869     Adrian J. Vanmyck
1869-1871     G. S. Hicks
1871-1872     Julius S. Valentine
1872-1875     A. T. Gray
1875-1879     George W. Gosling
1879-1880     Isaiah Wilson
1880-1881     D. Tasker
1881-1883     O. D. Watkins
1883-1885     George W. Gosling
1885-1887     E. B. Patterson
1887-1888     William John Wilson
1889-1891     L. E. Lovejoy
1891-1892     Ira T. Weldon
1893-1895     Arthur S. Williams
1896*             G. F. Craig
1897*             J. P. Durham
1898*             Douglas Pershman
1899*             A. J. Morris
1900-1901     G. E. Pooler
1901-1903     C. L. Keene
1903-1906     C. E. Deale
1906-1907     W. H. Parsons
1907-1909     J. V. Bennett
1909-1910     O. B. McLaughlin
1910-1911     H. J. Post
1911-1912     H. H. Harris
1912-1914     F. R. Maynard
1914-1917     H. L. Thornton
1917-1918     E. C. Dewey
1918-1919     Maynard Oldt
1919-1921     Alfred Chamberlain
1921-1922     J. R. Morrison
1922-1923     Thomas Rice
1926-1929     Wayne Fleenor
1929-1930     Arthur Larsen
1930-1934     Leon Manning
1934-1936     William Timms
1936-1937     Wallace W. Hurd
1937-1940     Helen Hurd
Methodist Church
1940               Benjamin Van Dyke
1940-1943     Louis Ellinger
1943-1944     Harold Perschbacker
1944-1946     Wesley Perschbacker
1947-1950     Joseph Tuma
1950-1956     Donald Turbin
1956-1960     Jack Baumgart
1960-1962     Ellis J. Brinnon
1962-1965     Everett M. Love
1965-1966     Donald Robinson
1966-1970     Laurence Waterhouse
United Methodist Church
1970-1975     Meredith Rupe
1975-1979     Larry Irvine
1979-1983     Terry MacArthur
1983-1985     Ross Bunce
1985-1988     Lloyd Walker
1988-1995     Steven D. Pearson
1995-1998     Orin L. Daniels
1998               Gregory Buchner (Student Intern)
1998               David A. Cheyne
1999               William V. Payne (Interim)
1999               Matthew Schlimm (Student Intern)
1999-2017     Sherri L. Swanson 
* Dates Speculative