The History of Thorndale United Methodist Church
The 140 year history of Thorndale United Methodist begins in 1878, when early settlers of Thorndale felt the need for a more conveniently located church for worship and Sunday School. The church was originally built across from where the Thorndale Fire House is today. By 1889, a parsonage was built next to the church, with most of the construction done by men and women of the church. During the years that followed, Thorndale was associated with various neighboring churches which included Downingtown, Hibernia, Romansville, Hopewell, Pomeroy, and a few others no longer in existence.
In the early 1900’s, the “little framed chapel” known as Thorndale United Methodist served the needs so well that more space was needed to care for the growing number of children coming to Sunday School. Imagine having “church suppers” to help raise funds without an adequate kitchen, utensils, and other necessities, but it was done. By 1930, with a combined 4 acres of land donated by Mr. H. Graham Rambo from Ingleside Farm, J. W.S.Bousom and Mr. and Mrs. Christian Zinn, Thorndale was able to sell the old church and build the new church down and across the street. What an amazing sight on moving day as the members of the church picked up their chairs from the old building and marched up the middle of the highway to the new church singing, “Onward Christian Soldiers”. Today, the site of the old church is now apartments, and the parsonage is a private residence.
Over the next several decades, Thorndale members and helpers built a new parsonage for our pastor and family, continued to make room for growth for the Sunday School, survived a tragic fire that destroyed areas under our sanctuary, and worked to rebuild damage done by the fire and a termite infestation while continuing to do the Lord’s work in the community.
As attendance outgrew our sanctuary, the need for an expanded worship center was met and an additional service was added. The church you see today shows the expanded worship center built in 1998 where the parsonage used to be.
All of the work done to grow and empower others comes from Christ and in covenant with God. We thank and praise Him for such wonderful memories of our past as well as a bright and exciting future before us.