For more than 130 years, First UMC has drawn its beliefs from both the words of the Bible and from traditional church teachings. Our goal is to help every person develop a ‘flexible and durable faith.’ That means having faith that is grounded in the spiritual truths in the Bible yet flexible enough to experience the difficulties (or tragedies) in life without shattering. The creation of a flexible and durable faith calls for a balance between heart and head. Such a faith is living and dynamic and must be based on the risen Jesus Christ. It calls on the Holy Spirit to inform and enliven us as we engage the realities of everyday life in a faith-filled manner. We are called to engage the Bible and bring to it our own personal experiences in order to arrive at our own unique understanding of Jesus and what he asks of us as his followers. As such, we strive to create a faith community where faith and reason are compatible.
We offer the following beliefs, not as a rigid and exhaustive list, but rather as a starting point for further theological reflection. We invite the individual believer to feel free to choose other words so as to express them in a more personal manner.
We believe in the Holy Trinity; God is our Creator, Jesus is our Savior, the Holy Spirit is God’s presence within us and in the world.
We believe in God’s grace as an unconditional, undeserved, and unearned gift of God’s love.
We believe in Jesus Christ as the ultimate expression and fulfillment of God’s grace whose life, death, and resurrection offer to all people transforming forgiveness and the promise of life eternal.
We believe in the Bible as the inspired Word of God.
We believe prayer is our lifeline with God.
We believe the church is the body of Christ in the world today, present to form followers of Christ and to share God’s love through Christ in the local and worldwide community.