The congregation at the Santa Cruz United Methodist Church invites the public to celebrate its 100 years of serving people in the Espanola valley. The celebration begins at 10 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 25 at the church at 405 S. McCurdy Road.
The missionary work and the church development began with the United Brethren Church in the early 20th Century. In 1946, the United Brethren Church merged with the Evangelical United Brethren Church. That denomination merged with the Methodist Church to become the United Methodist Church (UMC) in 1968. Over the years, the Santa Cruz church helped establish other small churches throughout Northern New Mexico.
A celebratory worship service begins at 10 a.m. and will include a historical portrayal of the church founder, Miss Mellie Perkins and her young interpreter Miss Manuelita Martinez. In addition, there will be singing of historical hymns and an enriching historical flavored sermon by Reverend Cecelia Lorenzen.
One hundred years ago, Miss Mellie Perkins responded to the need for educational opportunities in the Valley. She arrived in New Mexico from the Kansas Conference of the United Brethren in the early1900s. She opened the first mission school in Velarde in 1912. In 1915, the school and church were moved to Santa Cruz.
After the service, there will be a celebration dinner in the Fellowship Hall. The Church is at 405 S McCurdy road. For information, call 505.753.3151.