Stephen F. Austin and the Old Three Hundred arrived at the Brazos near Washington-on-the-Brazos in December of 1821. James and Daniel Gilleland, accompanied by Robert and Joseph Kuykendall, continued down river and then followed the La Bahía Road to the place where it crossed the Colorado River. They pitched camp near the site of present-day Columbus on Christmas Day, 1821. James (Jack) Cummins arrived before June 1822 and settled on the east bank of the Colorado River, opposite the community at Beason's Ferry, site of the present town of Columbus. Thus the town of Columbus began as a river crossing and became the seat of local government in 1822, when Austin's colony was divided into two autonomous districts by the Mexican governor. Austin surveyed the town intending to locate his headquarters here but finally opted for a more promising location on the Brazos River due to the frequent Indian attacks in the Colorado River District.
In June 1824, a Methodist Circuit Rider named Rev. Henry Stephenson visited the Austin colony while Stephen F. Austin was in Mexico City. After preaching in San Felipe, Stephenson preached at the homes of James Cummins and Samuel Carter near Columbus, Peach Creek in Gonzales County, and at the home of Nathaniel Moore near La Grange. Stephenson's trip was short lived because the newly formed Mexican Republic established Roman Catholicism as the only religious practice of Mexico including the Texas territory. The seeds planted by Stephenson began to grow and despite opposition from Mexican authorities, Henry Stephenson was placed in charge of the Methodist effort in Texas in 1834. After a plea from William Travis on August 17, 1835, John Wesley Kenney began preaching in the area of Fayette and Colorado counties. After the battle of San Jacinto in April 21, 1836, Rev. Martin Ruter volunteered for missionary service in the new Republic of Texas. With the arrival of Ruter, Methodism became firmly established in Texas.
In 1839, Columbus was an official stop on the Washington Circuit. By 1840, Ruter's vision of a Texas Methodist Conference was realized with the founding of Rutersville College (north of La Grange) and the formation of the Texas Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church. By 1844, Columbus became an appointment in the new Texas Conference and the first Methodist church in Columbus was built in 1854. The importance of Columbus to the early Methodist movement in Texas grew as Columbus became a circuit or district in the Texas Conference in 1859 and hosted the twenty-fourth annual session of the Texas Conference on October 28, 1863. As the communities of Houston, Austin, and San Antonio grew, the centers of the Methodism moved with them leaving Columbus as a crossroads between these influential centers. Currently, Columbus FUMC is on the eastern edge of the Rio Texas Annual Conference based out of San Antonio.
Columbus FUMC is a vital member of the City of Columbus by hosting and supporting:
Columbus Food Pantry 3rd Friday
Blood Drive 4th Friday
Share Your Christmas December
Thanksgiving Meal Wednesday noon before Thanksgiving
Teacher Appreciation Luncheon Week before beginning of school
Bingo Second Sunday afternoons.
Through the Wesley Nurse Program hosted by Columbus FUMC, we support:
Circus of Health Back to School Event
Blood pressure and blood sugar testing