The beginning of Methodism in Calvert County began around 1777, and it is
one of the oldest charges in the United States.
The West River circuit began in Southern Maryland in 1836, and in 1882, it
further divided, forming the Smithville charge and the Solomons Island and St.
Trinity was formed from three Southern Maryland churches - Asbury, Central
and Wesley. The three churches discerned and felt God was leading them to merge
into one church to serve the community. In March 1947, the three merged into one
official congregation and called themselves Trinity Methodist Church representing
the Holy Trinity of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and also an acknowledgement of the
three separate churches coming together. They continued to meet in their respective
churches until the present building was built in 1955. Trinity’s formal opening and
consecration took place Tuesday, November 22, 1955.
Asbury church was a successor of the old Holland Point church, and was begun
about 1834, and completed in 1837. The second building for Asbury was erected
Central was formed in 1867, and the church was erected in 1869.
The original Wesley Church was completed in 1882, and was destroyed by a fire, which swept through most of the village of Prince Fredrick. It was not until 1891 that the church was rebuilt and received the name Wesley Memorial Church. It was dedicated in the year 1892.
By March 1947, the three congregations had merged into one; thus the name Trinity. The congregations continued to worship in their existing buildings. A building program was begun and the Building Committee was formed, along with other committees necessary to implement the erection of a new church building. In August 1948, at an official board meeting, a resolution was passed that "we meet from time to time for the advancement of the project."
In January 1949, a Hammond organ was given by Mrs. Page C. Jett and her father, Mr. Herman R. Muinch, in memory of her mother, and was placed in Asbury "with the understanding it will be installed in the new Trinity Church". The building site for Trinity Methodist Church was the complete and unconditional gift of Arthur W. Dowell and his wife Lucretia H. Dowell, and Dr. Anita S. Dowell, being the two acres of land situated at the junctions of Routes 765 and 231.
A ground breaking ceremony was held on February 13, 1951. Mr. Lawrence R. Gray, accompanied by Janet Williams and LInda Jett, moved the first shovel of dirt. Soon after that the architect, Mr. Howard B. Dominick of Washington, DC, was secured and plans were drawn for the present church building. On October 18, 1953, Mr. Perry G. Bowen, Jr. was unanimously elected Chairman of the Building Committee, and the following February the contract was let to Stehle and Beans, of Annapolis, MD, for the erection of the basement. On December 17, 1954, the contract for the shell of the superstructure was let. On January 8, 1955, the cornerstone of Trinity Church was laid, with the Grand Master, Arthur W. Dowell, and the Grand Lodge of the Masons of Maryland participating.
In May 1955, the final contracts for the finishing of the interior of the church and the erection of the portico were let. In October 1955, the contractor was authorized to complete the steeple on the church. Pews and chancel furniture were custom built by Southern Desk Company of Hickory, NC, and are finished in colonial white with dark caps and bases.
The formal opening and consecration of Trinity Methodist Church was held on Tuesday evening, November 22, 1955, with the resident Bishop of the Washington area, G. Bromley Oxnam, presiding. Following the service, there was a week of consecration services dedicating memorial gifts, with former ministers speaking.
The Church School of Trinity continued to grow, resulting in a desperate need for additional space. Following evaluations and surveys, the Trustees agreed a Building Committee should be elected to handle the project. The Official Board authorized the Committee to employ an architect. Benjamin P. Elliott of Silver Spring, MD, was selected on November 12, 1963. Bids were opened in 1964, and a contract was awarded to the firm of Hopkins and Wayson. The work on the Educational Building addition was begun in 1965, and it was completed and occupied on November 23, 1965. The structure, costing $140,000, included a parlor, library, office, choir room, kitchen addition, and 12 classrooms.
In the same year, a decision was made to sell the old parsonage and build a new parsonage adjoining the present Trinity Church property. The old parsonage was located next to the present Lusby Hardware center in Prince Frederick. The new brick parsonage of one and one half stories was completed and occupied during the winter of 1964.
To improve the acoustics of the sanctuary, a public address system was installed in October of 1970 at Trinity. To combat the uncomfortable summer temperatures, plans were developed to install an air conditioning system in the sanctuary, parlor, fellowship hall, and kitchen in 1971.
The Hammond Electric Organ was replaced with a pipe organ by Lewis and Hitchcock Company, which was dedicated on February 22, 1976.
Four years later, on November 23, 1980, the mortgage for the church was burned. This was held on Trinity's 25th anniversary service.
As the county grew, so did the membership, and on July 29, 1985, the sanctuary balcony was remodeled to accommodate seating for overflow attendance.
In 1986, a section of the balcony was designated for videotaping of the 11 am Sunday service. The purpose of the taping was for airing on the public access cable channel in Prince Frederick. Also in 1986, an elevette was installed to ensure easy access to the church for those unable to use the stairs, and a public address system was installed in the Fellowship Hall.
In 1990, the church library was relocated from the second floor of the educational building to the old choir room on the second floor across from the minister's study. The room was remodeled, handmade storage cabinets were constructed, and a conference table and chairs were placed in the room. The "new" library was dedicated to the memory of James Lee Shannon, minister at Trinity from 1967 to 1983.
In 1993, the parking lot was expanded.
In 1994, the church was presented with an architect's plan for expansion of the building in three phases, and fundraising was initiated.
In 1995, portable walls were installed in the fellowship hall to provide space for six additional Sunday school classrooms, and in July, a sign was constructed for the front lawn for informing the community of the services and activities taking place at Trinity.
November 13, 1999, the congregation consecrated the completion of Phase 1 - a building that houses a new library, classrooms, pastor offices, administrative offices and work area, a large youth area adjoining the fellowship hall, expanded kitchen space, and a new choir room. An elevator was added to accommodate each floor of the new addition.
Through ministries that stretch from the local community to the world, Trinity United Methodist Church has been dedicated to making disciples of Jesus Christ and sending them into the world. The history of Trinity is only the beginning and we look forward to the journey ahead as we continue to seek God and what He desires for this community.