About Us

Welcome to our web page for the Morrison United Methodist Church. We hope that you will join us for our services this coming weekend so you can experience the “best place to be” for yourself. We have a Contemporary Worship Service on Saturday evenings as 5:30 p.m. On Sunday morning we worship at 8:00a.m. and 10:15a.m. (We have one 9:00a.m. worship service after Memorial Day through the Sunday before Labor Day, and one 10:15a.m. service in January and February.)

History

Early in 1836, a Methodist preacher arrived on horseback in Mt. Pleasant Township. The Rev. James McKean held services in a cabin of James Thomas – located northeast of Morrison. This became the first religious organization in the township, and was officially organized at Unionville in 1842. A church building was built in Unionville in 1855. The church was moved to Morrison and dedicated in 1862. A new building was then erected while the old one was remodeled, and both were dedicated in September of 1877.

In 1905, the church was enlarged and a basement added. The spire was taken down because it was insecurely fashioned. In 1929, the church was dressed in brick veneer and a new roof was added. In 1957, an option was presented to build a new building on other land, but the proposal was voted down. In 1964, permission was granted to construct a new education wing. In September of 1975, the Building Committee was given permission to build a brand new church building.

Groundbreaking was held on May 9, 1976 and construction began. In less than a year, the construction of the new church was completed. On April 3, 1977 – Palm Sunday, a ‘cross over’ was held, and the United Methodists walked to the new building from the Presbyterian Church where they had worshipped almost a whole year. The first worship service held in the new building was on Easter Sunday – April 10, 1977. We continue to proudly serve from this location – being a center of mission and ministry to our community and our world.

Staff

REV. CALVIN HAINES, JR.

Office:  815-772-4030

I have been serving as Pastor of First United Methodist Church of Freeport for nearly six years. Pastoring is my third career, but my first call.

I taught writing and journalism on the college level for twelve years, and then I worked for Verizon Wireless for another twelve years in Corporate Communications.

In 2010, I sensed a call to ministry. At first I thought I would be a lay leader or maybe pursue pastoral counseling. No one was more surprised than I that I was being called to the pastorate.

I worked full-time at Verizon Wireless while taking classes part-time at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. I was commissioned and appointed as Pastor of First UMC in 2014.

Pastoring has been the most rewarding work I have ever done. I have never been disappointed that I answered God’s call to pastoral ministry. I greatly enjoy preaching, teaching, providing pastoral care, leading worship, administering the sacraments, ordering the life of the church and helping folks grow as disciples of Jesus for the transformation of the world.

I was raised in the Methodist tradition at Overlea United Methodist Church in Baltimore, MD (the Cradle of American Methodism!). I am thankful my parents (both now deceased) were strong Christian believers, as is my sister, Nancy, my only sibling. I attended Sunday school weekly, served as an acolyte and was active in the youth group. My love of the aesthetics of worship and liturgy were nurtured in that colonial-style red brick church.

In high school, I accepted a friend’s invitation to attend his small Christian & Missionary Alliance church. It was there that I gained a love and appreciation of Scripture and Bible study. I was among a handful of high school guys the pastor took under his wing, discipling us and getting us involved in ministry. Five of us are now (or once were) pastors.

Out of a passion for studying the Bible, I attended Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. I thought I was going to become a pastor then, but it was not clear at the time that that was where God was leading me.

After earning a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University, I began teaching communications classes at Moody and Northwestern and started a master’s program in church history and theology at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, hoping I would eventually teach in those areas.

In the late 1990s I experienced a crisis of faith and, at the same time, my marriage was under a great deal of stress. My wife and I eventually divorced. I entered a period I describe as my desert years in which I did not want to have anything to do with Christianity or the church. I am thankful God did not give up on me. Through the constant prompting of the Holy Spirit, my love of God was rekindled and I came back to the faith. At First United Methodist Church of Evanston I found a spiritual home. I also rediscovered the Wesleyan tradition, focused on social as well as personal holiness, which appeals to me a great deal. I graduated from Garrett with a Master of Divinity degree in 2015, and I was ordained in 2017.

How many years have you been in the position/ how many years in the church? :: I began my pastoring career in Freeport, IL in 2014.  I have been at MUMC since July 1,  2020.
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LYLE BUSH :: TREASURER
How many years have you been in the position/ how many years in the church? :: Since 2005 as treasurer and a member of the church since 1968
Family :: Wife – Gretchen, & Children – Lori, Trent, Todd, & 5 Grandkids
Hobbies :: Gardening and yard work, woodworking, outdoor activities
One thing you like about your job :: Time shared with co-workers


 JOHN FRAME :: VOCAL DIRECTOR

How many years have you been in the position/ how many years in the church? :: 28 years as the Vocal Director
Family :: Married with 3 children and 7 grandchildren
Hobbies :: Reading and traveling
One thing you like about your job :: Love and appreciate the talent and dedication of the singers.

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PAT CASSESNS :: ORGANIST
How many years have you been in the position/ how many years in the church? :: Since 2008 as Organist but been in the church for over 77 Years
Family :: Husband Doug – Children Steve, Lisa, Todd – 5 Grandchildren, 1 Great Grandchild
Hobbies :: Folk art painting, reading and jigsaw puzzles
One thing you like about your job :: I love playing the organ. I love the sound of the organ. I love being part of the church service.

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CHRISTINA CROEGAERT :: ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

How many years have you been in the position/ how many years in the church? :: Since 2015
Family :: Lives in Erie with her Children – Alison and Kenny
Hobbies :: Reading, biking and spending time with family.
One thing you like about your job :: I enjoy the wonderful atmosphere and the people!

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TBD :: CHURCH ACTIVITIES DIRECTOR

How many years have you been in the position/ how many years in the church? ::  .
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LISA MEIER :: SENIOR CARE COORDINATOR 

How many years have you been in the position/how many years in the church? ::  Lisa grew up in the church, attending before she was able to became an official member.  She has been a member of the church since her Confirmation in 1982.

Family ::  Lisa’s husband is Randy Meier, and she has 2 sons – Brandon and Will.

Hobbies ::  Lisa enjoys spending time crocheting, baking – especially pies, and time with the family’s two horses.  In her spare time, she also likes to cross stitch and write letters to pen pals.

One thing you like about your job ::  Lisa loves spending time with my patients at work, especially to elderly.

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MEL JOHNSON :: CUSTODIAN

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