“Community” is in our name
Faith Community United Methodist Church has served the Hamilton and neighboring communities for quite some time. Many use our building for meetings, events, and support. Although we know “church” is more than a building, we also recognize that our walls are just as important to our work. Our walls provide multiple opportunities for our multiple ministries. Other than Sunday service, we are blessed to house Boy and Girl Scout troops, a food pantry, Back-to-School block parties, Trunk-or-Treat, and more. We also reach out beyond 5315 Harford to participate in festivals (like having a children’s craft corner at the Hamilton Festival,) and partner with a school (Garrett Heights Elementary and Middle). Serving the community is what we do. “Community” is in our name. Being able to provide for our community is who we are. Our members wouldn’t have it any other way.
Our Vision: We are ever growing in Christ, inviting each one to make a difference.
Faith Community United Methodist Church was organized in January 2006 as a result of the merger of two congregations: Gatch Memorial Methodist Church and St. John’s of Hamilton Methodist Church. Gatch Memorial Methodist Church was founded in 1772 by Rev. Philip Gatch a circuit preacher in Maryland. The church was located on what is now the corner of Belair Rd and White Ave., where it remained until May 2006. St. John’s of Hamilton began in 1903 as an outgrowth of Taylor’s Methodist Circuit which included Taylor’s Chapel, Andrew Chapel and Perry Hall. The congregation was officially named St. John’s of Hamilton Methodist Episcopal Church South in April 1904 and initially worshipped in member’s homes and rented store fronts. On Christmas morning in 1926, the congregation held its first worship service in the church located at 5315 Harford Road.
St. John’s of Hamilton and Gatch Memorial UMCs started on their journey together in 2005 when they began sharing a pastor, the Rev. Dr. Howard Nash. Initially the congregations remained in separate buildings with Rev. Nash leading two services each Sunday. By January 2006, the two congregations had merged to form Faith Community United Methodist Church. Although both buildings were old, the location on Harford Road was the newer of the two so the decision was made to house the new congregation in the former St. John’s building. Gatch Memorial UMC was officially deconsecrated as a Methodist Church on May 21, 2006 at a service led by District Superintendent Rev. Dr. C. Anthony Hunt. The property was sold later that year to Koinonia Baptist Church.
Rev. Nash remained as pastor of Faith Community UMC until his retirement in December 2009. He was followed by Rev. Pauline Wilkins (interim, January-June 2010). In July 2010, Rev. Jacquelin McLellan became the pastor until her retirement in 2017. In July 2017, Faith Community welcomed its current pastor and his family, Rev. Ronald S. Dodson, Sr.
In 2016 we opened our doors to the Eastern United Methodist congregation when their building on North Avenue suffered irreparable fire damages. Eastern UMC and Faith Community UMC are now partners in faith, sharing one building while offering separate worship experiences. Our building is also the home of the Kenyan Christian Fellowship, as well as NA and Scouting groups.
These are challenging times for churches, and Faith Community is no exception. As Rev. Dodson has frequently stated, we are a “community of faith”. We have endeavored to remain a viable presence in the Northeast Baltimore community, providing a place where people can be nourished spiritually and physically.