history of Tuskawilla United Methodist Church began in June of 1980 when
seventeen worshipers gathered at Harbor School for services.
Reverend Barbara Williams Riddle was the founding pastor and within three
months had expanded this infant church to forty-five. The congregation
found a temporary worship center across the road at Red Bug Elementary.
The congregation became chartered on December 14, 1980 with seventy-one
members and fifteen preparatory members.
The first building, a 6,900 square foot multi-purpose facility and our
current fellowship hall, was ready for occupancy in November of 1982.
church was growing in numbers and needed space for Sunday School classes,
meetings, youth group and more. The two-story education building was
the second phase of construction reaching completion in June 1987.
TUMC's preschool, the
Early Childhood Weekday Program, began in the fall of that year with Nancy
Scheid as director.
bid farewell to the Riddles in 1988 and welcomed our newly-assigned pastor,
Reverend David Fuller, in June. Rev. Fuller concentrated on church
programs during his tenure. He initiated our age group ministries and
continued the growth and nurturing of our youth programs.
of 1992 brought a new pastor to the TUMC family, Dr. Glenn L. Quam.
Dr. Quam paved the way for a new building program by negotiating the
purchase of property adjacent to TUMC. This property opened the
possibility of expansion, ultimately resulting in our new sanctuary.
Samuel "Skip" Parvin became our pastor in June of 1994.
Rev. Parvin began a three-year stewardship program in 1996
to fund the building of our new sanctuary. The fruits
of this campaign became a reality when the beautiful worship
center, complete with stained glass windows, was consecrated
on February 27, 2000.
Charley Reeb took the TUMC leadership reins in July of 2003. Under
Pastor Charley's leadership, small group studies became a vital part of the
church's focus. With a passion for people and preaching, Pastor
Charley will be remembered fondly by his huge and frequent laughter!
July 2008, TUMC welcomed Reverend Dwayne Craig.
With a desire to see our congregation become more-reflective of the larger
Christian community, Reverend Craig encouraged the church to be more
intentional about including folks of all walks of life, all ethnicities, all
skin colors, all socio-economic backgrounds, those with disabilities, and
anyone desiring to be a Christian. Unity and inclusiveness are important
themes that are woven into all areas of TUMC.
July of 2011, Tuskawilla
United Methodist Church welcomed
Reverend Molly Warren. Pastor Molly was instrumental in
helping equip our congregation to further the Kingdom of God through
forgiveness, healing, and reaching out to the wandering
sheep. By placing an emphasis on small groups, such as
Disciple Bible Study, TUMC saw growth in all areas of the
church. In 2014, we bid her farewell as she transitioned
into retirement. We will forever be grateful for her
leadership, kindness and compassion.
The summer of 2014 brought
with it our current Senior Pastor, the Reverend Sarah
Miller. Pastor Sarah brings with her an exciting vision as
she continues to build upon our belief that the church is a
place for everyone. We strive to be a community of faith
that embodies the message of Open Hearts, Open Doors, Open
Minds. Come visit us today!
lives have been touched and drawn closer to our Lord and
Savior, Jesus Christ, during the existence of this United
Methodist church in the pines on Red Bug Lake Road.
May the next thirty years bring as much growth and
excitement as we have seen in the last quarter century where
we live out our vision statement, "Belong, Grow, and Serve."