What We Believe
Painting by Bruce Graver-2006
The Salem United Methodist Church is a church of love - love of Jesus Christ, who is first in our hearts and minds, love of one another as the Body of Christ at Salem UMC, and love of the community!
We believe we are part of the "body of Christ" around the world, the Church, and so have the mission of carrying out the commission of Jesus to make new followers so that others may join us in the Kingdom of God. Our particular branch of the Christian faith traces back to the Methodist revival movement in England during the 1700's. John Wesley, an Anglican priest (Church of England), founded a movement to provide connections for Christ-followers to grow deeper in their faith and benefit from spiritual disciplines and support for one another through life. In fact, the original Methodists were groups made up of many different denominations, including Baptists, Presbyterians, and even Catholics. While they all had home congregations for worship and service, the Methodists met during the week in small groups and large gatherings to encourage one another in spiritual growth - "growing up" in Christ (See the Bible's New Testament book (letter) called Ephesians, chapter 4).
Eventually the movement changed from a spiritual renewal to a particular branch of the Church, mainly due to the impact of the Revolutionary War between the colonies of the United States of America and England in the latter 1700's.
In the "new world" of the U.S., Methodist preachers followed the westward development of the frontier. They were called "circuit riders" because they rode horseback to locations where Christian pioneers would gather at appointed times. The preachers would be assigned a particular circuit of preaching points and offer messages to encourage the believers as they traveled around on a schedule.
For more information about the United Methodist's Beliefs Click Here.