I will bless the Lord at all times and His praise shall continually be in my mouth.Psalm. 34:1
In 1856, three missionaries William Taylor, William Butler and Thoborn were sent to minister the country of India by the Methodist conference in America, which was founded by John Wesley.
In 1874, the history of Methodist Tamil Church was dawned by William Taylor, the first missionary of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
In 1886 the Tamil evangelical work started bearing fruit by Dr A.R. Rudisil. And the first fruit Mr Naidu who was baptized, in 1903, by Rev. Rudisil became the first Indian Pastor of our church. In the days of Pastor Edward Issac and Pastor Govindaraj Gershon the church service was conducted under the thatched roof. In 1917, a beautiful church, in which we worship now today, was built under the supervision of Mr J. Kinham and dedicated by Bishop. J.C. Robinson H. The years from 1911 to 1931 are considered as the golden times of our church history. But the next 20 years there was a setback in the evangelical work. But Asst. Pastor A. Samuel who served as Honorary Pastor from 1933 to 1966, the longest-serving pastor in MTC, during the crucial years led the church when mission support was withdrawn by the foreign entity which was until then supporting MTC as an outreach project.
From 1938 to 1961 Rev. J.C. Wichchurch had served our church. From 1963 onwards Rev. D.S. Sagayadhas had brought together the families that were scattered and paved the way for the church services to be more blessed and the church was overflowing with people. In 1967, Golden Jubilee was celebrated and in memory of it, the Alice Hall, was built and dedicated for Sunday school and for other church functions. The Sunday School, which was not happening for various reasons, was started with new vigour and enthusiasm. And a church choir also was started during Rev. Sagayadhas’ tenure.
From 1970 to1972, Rev. V.D. Saghayam had served our church. From 1972 to 1975, Rev. G.S. Mohan had led our church and in his period the Thursday Bible study was started. During this time the church had become self-supporting. He created the burden and enthusiasm in the church members to participate in the church and evangelical ministry. This resulted in starting of village ministries in the place called Menampedu.
From 1975 to 1983 the work of Rev. Y. Moses Selvaraj was seen as remarkable in terms of church growth and ministry. Ministries grew with vision. Ministry at Padikuppam was started and the church wanted to make its footprints in major districts like Madurai, Tiruchi and Coimbatore and the ministries were started there as well.
With the vision to raise up ministers from our own church, 5 young men and 1 young woman dedicated themselves to the ministry and were sent to Theological college for studies. In 1979, the Madras district was born and started functioning. In 1982, Rev. Y. Moses Selvaraj had been appointed as the Church Leader and the District Superintendent.
From 1983 to 1987 Rev. A.X.P. Rayen, Rev. Hepsiba Jackson, Rev. Y. Moses Selvaraj, Rev. Justin N Harris and Rev. B. Immanuel had served our church. From Dec 1987 to July 1989 Rev. Martin Alphonse had provided leadership to our church. In his time, ministry field such as Kallakuruchi and Ranganathapuram was started. Also Methodist Malar, our church’s monthly newsletter was started to be published. The Editor for the Malar was Mrs. Sugantha Jeyabalan. The Madras Regional conference was seeded during his tenure and preparations were made towards it. In April 1995, the Madras Regional Conference (MRC) had blossomed.
From 1989 to 1999 Rev. Samuel J Royappa had served our church. In his period, ministry fields were created in different parts of Kallakuruchi and suburbs of Chennai and they grew faster. Church renovation and the Platinum Jubilee project were started and successfully completed. 1991-92 Rev. Ross Paul, 1993-94 Rev. K. Devanbu, 1994-96 Rev. N. Premkumar, 1996-2001 Rev. Maurice, 2001- 02 Rev. Sam Sudalaiyandi, 2002-05 Rev. Charles Wesley had served as Asst. Pastors in our church. From 1999 to 2003 Rev. E.C. Gnana Sekar had served as Sr. Pastor of our church. In his time, the ministry was started in Kakkanjee Nagar, Dr Rajaratnam Nagar and Red Hills. From 2003 to 2005 Rev. S. Sundararajan had served our church and during his time ministry at Chettipedu was started. From 2005 to 2008 Rev. J.S. Santharaj had served our church and Rev. K. Deva Anbu served as the Asst. Pastor. During their time, the Platinum Jubilee Faith project had entered the last stage where two storied building with modern facilities was built and dedicated for the glory of God. Mr Derry Raghland was elected as the All India Methodist Youth Fellowship President for 2003 – 2008. He was the first President to represent the then Madras Regional Conference.
From May 2008, Sr. Pastor Rev. V. Anand Raj and is serving our church. 2008-09 Rev. R. Maurice and 2009-10 Rev. Manibabu had served as Associate and Asst. Pastor respectively. In Rev. Anand Raj’s period, the Platinum Jubilee building carpet area was expanded by adding the corridor area with the hall. A land was bought for the church at Red Hills. From June 2010 till May 2011 Rev. James Raj had served as Assistant Pastor.
From June 2011till April 2018, Rev. Andrew B Natarajan, Senior Pastor and Dist. Supt of North Chennai served in our church during his time he planned for the Centenary Celebrations and Rev. Matthew Maran served the church until April 2019 as Associate Pastor. During this time the church planted village churches as the Mission & Evangelism team along with church organisations made remarkable ministries in Kuttingoundanoor (Tirupathur), Annavalli (Cuddalore), Thirupanagadu (Kancheepuram), Kaveripakkam (Kanchipuram), Varagur Pettai (Chidambaram), Pethanaickenpalayam (Salem) as part of Centenary celebrations.A land was donated by a church member for the city church in Kolathur.
The Church celebrated its 100th year in 2017. It was a remarkable feat. The Centenary celebrations was celebrated under the able leadership of the First CRC Resident Bishop Dr ED Yesurathnam. He took over the Episcopal office of Chennai Regional Conference and this was his very first programme he attended along with ecumenical leaders all across South India. Bishop Dr ED Yesurathnam visits our church every year and encourages the congregation and participates in major celebration programmes. The Pastor’s who had served here previously were invited and felicitated. It was one year full of programmes which had programmes on Spiritual Aspects, Social Aspects and Celebration Aspects. The entire church, all organisations and the choir participated in each and every programme. We were able to release an Indian Stamp with the help of the Government of India – Postal Department. The 100 Voice choir was renovated, New Organ and PA System was bought and dedicated for the Church. A special 100 Year Souvenir was released. A silver coin was gifted for each family in our church. The centenary committee coordinated the entire celebrations.
In May 2018 -Rev Sam Sudaliyandi took over as the Senior Pastor of our Church and continues to shepherd the church in a holistic manner. As continuation of the Centenary Celebrations in December 2018 the Church released the Song Book “Potri Thuthipom”. The senior pastor took enormous steps in visiting homes of every church member and he spends more time with every organisation of our Church. The new church in Vasuvasamuthiram (Kalpakkam) was dedicated. In May 2019 Rev M Daniel joined as the Associate Pastor. He is very Young and Energetic and mingles with all like the Senior Pastor. Many New members have come since 2018. The church has introduced one special programme during every December is Natchathira Iravu (Star Night) which brings other faith people to celebrate Christmas with us. In 2019 we were able to reach 100 new people during this event.
During Covid – 19 the church started the Media Department and all the regular services are professionally broadcasted on live through YouTube. We also helped many people who were jobless during the time. The social concern committee and the pastors were deeply involved in the rehabilitation work. The doctors of the church were greatly appreciated for their work during the pandemic.
The Lord has been leading our church all these years and we pray that more souls receive salvation through our church and be strengthened in faith every day by living our mottos HOLY LIFE and doing GOSPEL MINISTRY and be brought into the Kingdom of God.
We give all the glory, honour and praise unto our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ alone. Amen.