Methodism in New Bethlehem dates back to 1838 when services were held in the log house of Phillip Hoffman, the location of which is now 341 Broad Street. Smith’s Schoolhouse, about one-half mile out of town, was also used for services until 1848, when a school was built in New Bethlehem and the religious services transferred to it.
The First United Methodist Church was built in New Bethlehem in 1853 and dedicated in February 19, 1854. This church, which was a plain, wooded structure and which served the needs of the congregation for 42 years, stood on the location of the paved parking lot in back of the present church.
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