We celebrated 100 years in downtown Murphy in 2022!  The CORNERSTONE was laid for building our current house of worship in May of 1922.  A large commemorative celebration took place on May 22, 2022 with a special service followed by a catered meal at The Hackney Warehouse in downtown Murphy.

Plans for the year will include special guests and music on various Sundays throughout the year of 2022.  Speakers and music will be posted on the calendar of this website and will be updated as things are added to the calendar.  Be sure to check back frequently so you may plan you return visit(s) to Murphy First United Methodist Church at a time most convenient for you.  We look forward to reconnecting with you and sharing the awesome things God is doing right here in the heart of downtown Murphy.  We send a hearty Methodist welcome and  our doors are open to all at any time!

photo by Larry Van Horn, Brasstown NC

photo by Larry Van Horn, Brasstown NC


Folks brought blankets, folding chairs and a picnic to the grounds surrounding the Harshaw Chapel on Saturday evening, May 22nd, and enjoyed a special program of music, fellowship and history.  Bill Hughes, Wally Avett, and Billy Ray Palmer took a group on a historical tour. Others ate picnic dinners in the shade. And kids had fun playing on the grounds.  We were grateful to have Ted Olsen, Central Appalachian Project Manager for Partners for Sacred Spaces, with us. He shared about how the Harshaw Chapel is 1 of 9 (out of hundreds of potential candidates) that are part of a cohort in Partners’ program. Partners has been helpful in advising and guiding through the restoration process, as well as a grant funding partner.


9:30am – 10:15am:  Fellowship/Coffee hour in the Fellowship Hall – take a trip down memory lane with photos and other artifacts of memorabilia.

10:30am – 12pm:  Worship service in the sanctuary with messages from former pastors, special guests, and music by current and alumni choirs.

12:30pm:  Catered luncheon at The Hackney Warehouse.

We had a fantastic turn out for celebration, worship and the luncheon.  The Welcome Committee greeted people with a gift of a beautiful commemorative Christmas ornament. The sanctuary was filled with dynamic music from the Handbell, Children’s, Chancel and ALPHA reunion choirs! Church members and special guests shared the legacy of Murphy FUMC and church leaders shared in praise and worship. Pastor Wil inspired the congregation with his message of hope for the next 100 years. After the service, the congregation assembled on the front steps for a special photograph (in the heading of this page), before going to The Hackney Warehouse for a delicious lunch and opportunities to visit and share with one another. Plans are being made to add to the old “time capsule”, to make the box as secure and airtight as possible, and add articles from today.  The “redeposition” of the time capsule will take place on Sunday, July 24, 2022. This day was selected because July 24,1922 was the actual day the original time capsule was placed. Our forefathers “directed” us exactly how to present and plan for all of this. We had old newspaper articles which told us exactly what they did in 1922 and we decided to follow their lead and do the same.

Special messages from former pastors who were unable to join us were recorded and are available to watch here: Former Ministers – Centennial Video – YouTube

Some photos from the celebrations follow.