Massachusetts is seeing one of its oldest churches close. Founded in 1816 by eight members, first in home groups, Christ Church UMC Methodist Congregation in Southwick has so far faced many name, location and membership changes. However, the health crisis has considerably weakened this already diminished community. For lack of youth to revitalize the Church, the members thus resolved to dissolve it on July 1st, in a calm and grateful step however. “How many people have been baptized, confirmed, married or buried here? How many sermons, hymns, prayers and acts of worship have flowed from the hearts, minds and souls of his ministers, laity and speakers?” expresses the Church in a note relayed by the Christian Post. Pastor Ken Blanchard decided it was also a good time to retire.
“With dwindling (membership) numbers and an aging population, by 2019 Church members had begun to recognize that we could no longer do what we once did.” “So we have come to the end of an era: the closure of the Church”, after 206 years of existence.