On February 1, 1843 forty three laymen gathered in Andover, Massachusetts at a Wesleyan Anti-slavery convention to effect the organization of the Wesleyan Methodist Connection of America.(taken from “125 years for Christ”) On February 12, 1843 and under the care of Lyndon King the First Lisbon Wesleyan Methodist Episcopal Church was established with 185 members, because as Reverend Salmon H. Foster stated, “Church order and wholesome discipline is indispensible to the prosperity of the cause of God in any and every community.” The little congregation later became known as the Lisbon Wesleyan Chapel until it was disbanded in 1921.
In 1892 the quarterly report stated- “…unable to make satisfactory arrangements with the First Wesleyan Methodist Church to work together…” it was decreed to form a separate church and a church building was erected in Lisbon Centre. November 15, 1893 saw the Second Wesleyan Methodist Church of Lisbon Centre organized with 14 members transferred from the First Lisbon Wesleyan Church. Reverend J. R. Wylie was the pastor who led this congregation to do so. Both churches and their congregations continued their work separately until sometime into 1922.
May 11, 1905 stands out as the date on which the Women’s Home and Foreign Missionary Society was first organized by Mrs. E.D. Carpenter. (Her husband was the pastor at the time.) She was also the first president of the group. Today this group is called the Lisbon Wesleyan Women and their tireless work continues to improve the lives of others.
The Young Missionary Worker’s Board (YMWB) was established on April 10, 1910. This group eventually led to the addition of Sunday School to the morning worship services. Later Sunday School became its own entity and YMWB became Wesleyan Kids For Missions (WKFM).
The October 10, 1914 quarterly minutes show the first of several entries charging the trustees to investigate the building of a parsonage and barn on the church property. (Prior to this there was only the sanctuary and some out buildings for the buggies and horses.) An entry dated March 21, 1915 states-“Today it is completed, equipped with every modern convenience and ready for our pastor to occupy. It is a building of which our people may justly feel proud.” Later Sunday School rooms were added to the sanctuary and then much later, the current foyer. Work on the Charles Moore Fellowship Hall began in 2003 and was dedicated on August 28, 2004.
In 1941, a Young People’s League was established with Reverend C. Lawrence Hill as their pastor. This later became the Lisbon Wesleyan Young People’s Society and continues as Lisbon Wesleyan Youth today.
The prayer that the pastor prayed on February 4, 1858 still fits for Lisbon Wesleyan Church today. He said, “May the great head of the church greatly bless this church with a growing knowledge in the truth of His word and the continuous baptism of his Spirit. And grant to them to be strengthened with great might by His Spirit in the inward man that they may fully fulfill the mission to which God has appointed them in witnessing a good confession of grace bestowed and bearing unequivocal testimony against every evil way, and by him the light of truth, love and good works lead many to glorify the God of all truth and grace. Amen.”