Who We Are
We are people on a journey of life and faith. There’s nothing extraordinary about us except that we have learned that God’s creative love is the connective thread that holds the universe together. We have learned that we need companions to walk the faith journey. We are trying to be a faith community who values diversity and accepts all people just as they are. We know we still have more work to do.
We welcome all people on the Rainbow Spectrum and those who don’t know what that means. Bend Church is more about people than place. Our location allows us to minister to a diverse downtown community where we seek to create a safe space for everyone’s spiritual journey. We do not have all the answers, but we know that Jesus points the way.
Our Core Values
Bend Church strives to be a grace-filled partner in building a beloved community in Central Oregon that is marked by Christ’s love.
Service: We strive to offer mutually empowering, multi-generational opportunities for kindness by listening to the longings and needs of our community, and
responding in love with our passion and resources.
Storytelling: In this place we remind each other of the ancient stories of our faith, we listen deeply to the stories of our neighbors, and write a new story of hope
Justice: We believe that all people are beloved children of God. We take action to partner with organizations that affirm care of creation, full inclusion of all people, and the dismantling of evil, injustice, and oppression in whatever forms they present themselves.
Bend United Methodist Church has roots that are strong and deep. In 1906, a year after the city of Bend was incorporated, the Methodist Church in Bend was chartered and has been growing ever since.
Its first building, called The Little Brown Church, was built in 1912 at the corner of Franklin Avenue and Sisemore Street, where it still stands.
Continuing to expand over the years, the church broke ground on a new building at its current location on Bond Street in 1922. A Christian Education building was added in 1955.
In 2006, Bend United Methodist Church celebrated its 100th Anniversary and hearts were filled with joy and thankfulness for the opportunity to serve the Bend community. The focus on hospitality, service, compassion, and justice — the foundation of our values in the early days — continues to be our focus today.
The beautiful stained glass windows in our church have a rich history but, over the years, they darkened and the protective covers lost their clarity. In 2013, the church gave them a much-needed face-lift to restore them to their former glory.
The windows, which line three sides of the church’s sanctuary, feature images from the Old and New Testaments and memorials to some of Bend’s early prominent citizens and church leaders. To learn more about the restoration project, we invite you to view the video here.
What is a Methodist?
The United Methodist Church is the second largest Protestant denomination in the United States and includes approximately 12.5 million members worldwide.
The Church had its beginnings in the 1500s in England. In the 1700s, John Wesley, a minister in the Church of England preached a “method” for the practice of Christian faith, which included devotion to prayer, study of the Bible, and helping others. He and the first “Methodists” supported prison reform and the abolition of slavery. His central message was, “Do all the good you can. By all the means you can. In all the ways you can. In all the places you can. At all the times you can. To all the people you can. As long as ever you can.”
In 1735, John Wesley traveled with his brother, Charles, also an Anglican minister, to America where he trained preachers, called Circuit Riders, to travel by horseback to the most remote areas of the country to deliver the Good News of the Gospel in open areas and tents.
Building on this heritage, Methodists continue to work for social justice, religious and political freedom, service to others in the name and spirit of Jesus Christ, and acceptance of all people regardless of age, race, color, creed, and sexual identity.
In the tradition of John and Charles Wesley, our members study Scripture, encourage thoughtful debate, and confront the tough issues of our day. We still lead with our hearts, keep our minds open, and welcome everyone through our doors.
Learn more about the United Methodist Church here.