A Brief History of Yardley United Methodist Church
Our history reflects a Church that has welcomed all persons to worship, supported their growth in our Christian faith, and encouraged the expression of that faith through word and action.
The earliest written record of our history lists a baptism in 1834. By 1835 Methodists were meeting at an old storehouse on Bridge Street, now Afton Avenue, near the Delaware Canal. The growing congregation built a brick church in 1838 on South Main Street — the current site of the Yardley Town Center. The church would join a 9-church group, known as a ‘charge’ to which a pastor was assigned. The group grew and divided several times. In 1952, Yardley Church, with 301 members, became a separate pastoral charge. After enlarging its building twice, the congregation purchased 3½ acres of land just outside Yardley Borough in 1955. Scammel’s Corner, in Lower Makefield, became the site on which the present church stands. Completed in 1959, it was soon joined by a parsonage in 1962 and later enlarged by an Education Wing and Office Suite in 1991.
In the tradition of United Methodism, our church has ministered to the surrounding community and to the world in ways that authentically reflect the Good News of Jesus Christ. It took a stand for civil rights in our community during the turbulent 1960s. In the early 1970s members established a children’s tutoring program which developed into the Yardley Head Start Program. Members have been involved with the Bucks County Emergency Shelter since its inception and regularly serve meals to the homeless in Trenton and Philadelphia. They have helped Yardley residents cleanup following occasional flooding of the Delaware River and Delaware Canal. The church also hosts and engages in programs promoting an interfaith dialogue.
The church’s passion for service has taken it well beyond its Yardley home. Annual intergenerational mission trips have served those in need and those recovering from disaster in Maine, West Virginia, the Gulf Coast, Mexico, Washington, D.C., the coastal areas of New Jersey and New York, Philadelphia, and Alaska. The Life Giving Water Project was begun in 2002. It has helped fund the drilling of 11 deep wells that provide accessible clean water for people, crops, and livestock in villages in Zambia, in southern Africa.
Yardley United Methodist Church is an inclusive and mission-minded community that is continually looking for different and better ways to serve its neighbors, near and far, in God’s name.