Memorial First India United Methodist Church is a unique multi-ethnic congregation with people representing over four different nationalities, this church stands as a testimony that the Gospel of God’s love in Jesus Christ is for all people. This church celebrates its diversity as well as unity in Christ.
What began as Memorial Church of the United Brethren, denomination in 1890 at North Capital and R Streets moved to the current site in Silver Spring in 1956. In 1968 with the merger of the “Evangelical United Brethren church” and the Methodist church, Memorial Church became a United Methodist Congregation. Over the years the Memorial has been served by a long line of distinguished pastors. Since, 1970 the membership of Memorial UMC began to decline. Due to few hands, minds, and bodies, and inadequate financial resources, Memorial UMC was unable to do the mission and ministry of Jesus Christ in the way it was done for over 120 years. The leadership of Baltimore-Washington Conference along with the leadership of Memorial UMC has worked out a plan envisioning a new future, a merged congregation. Beginning July 1, 2006, Memorial UMC and First India UMC formed a “Co-operative Parish”.
What began as an Indian Christian fellowship of immigrants from South India in 1989, became a Chartered ethnic congregation in 1998, was called First India United Methodist Church of Baltimore-Washington Conference. The main purpose was to meet the spiritual and social needs of the immigrants. Over the years First India UMC worshipped in a rented place, which was not sufficient. Soon First India has out grown the space. When the need for space was presented to the District Superintendent, the Conference took the initiative to find an adequate space for First India congregation. At that time while Conference leadership was working with Memorial church came up with the suggestion that if a merger of Memorial and First India as one congregation is possible then the needs of both the churches would be met. Accordingly, the plans were drawn and presented to each congregation separately. The membership of First India UMC voted to become a Co-operative Parish. On July 1, 2006, First India UMC along with its Pastor Rev. Samuel Honnappa moved to Memorial UMC Silver Spring, Maryland.
A Committee representing two congregations was formed to work on the merger document. After the merger document was drafted and approved by the respective Charge Conferences, on January 25, 2007 the merger of Memorial UMC and First India UMC was completed giving birth to a brand new Congregation Memorial First India United Methodist Church.
We continue to embody our Wesleyan heritage of “personal salvation and Evangelism” through its ministries. We keep Christ as the center of our attention and believe that in Him we have a human portrait of God who created us and loves us in a personal way. We believe that the Holy Spirit is God present with us to comfort and motivate us to be His children. We support mission outreach programs around the world and across our nation. We continue to write the story of the lives and ministries of men, women and children who make up this unique, loving and friendly congregation. Come and see what the Lord is doing among us and through us.