Catalina United Methodist Church (CUMC) is a part of the Desert Southwest conference of Methodist Churches. Methodists are a fully connectional church with other Methodists around the U. S. and world!
Our hearts go out to all of the people affected by the recent Hurricane Harvey castastrophe in Texas and Louisiana. One of the parts of our connectional church is the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR). Teams from around the U. S. are working in Texas right now. Any donations received go 100% to the benefit of the people in Texas and Louisiana. You may donate by clicking on this hyperlink.
Catalina welcomed our new senior pastor The Rev. Dr. Dottie Escobedo-Frank on July 1, 2017. Dr. Escobedo-Frank worked with her parents in the mission field in Nogales, AZ. She felt called to do God’s work when she was 8 years old! She received her Master’s of social Work from Arizona State University. She received Masters of Divinity from Claremont School of theology. She has served a number of churches in the Phoenix area and recently completed a term as District Superintendent of the South District of the Desert Southwest Conference. She has authored a number of books including: Igniting Worship: Advent & Christmas; 40 Creative Sermons; and The Church Revolution form the Edge (coauthored with Rudy Rasmus). Dr. Escobedo-Frank recently received her Doctorate of Ministry from George Fox Evangelical Seminary. Rev. Dottie is married to Dr. James Frank, an optometrist. They have children and grandchildren in Arizona.
Catalina UMC also welcomed a new associate pastor Jamie Booth who is a graduate of Asbury College where she received her master of divinity. Pastor Booth has been serving as a US-2 missionary in Tucson for the past 2 years. She is pursuing her ordination in the Methodist Church.
Church services are at 8:00 a.m. in the chapel; Contemporary Refuge Service at 9 a.m. in Fellowship Hall and 11:00 a.m. in the main sanctuary. http://catalinamethodist.org/sundays/worship-services/
Sunday School Classes are also available each Sunday. http://catalinamethodist.org/sundays/sunday-school/
Benjamin Hansen is the interim Director of Music at Catalina. He will be directing the music program for the church. http://catalinamethodist.org/ministries/music-art/
Ben is a doctoral candidate at the University of Arizona. Catalina hosts many musical venues including Helios, True Concord, Arizona Repertory Singers, Arizona Chorale Society, Tucson Masterworks in addition to our own Lessons and Carols which will be performed on December 17, 2017 at 4 p.m.
Our choirs start in September with rehearsals on Thursday evenings at 7 p.m. in H 27. Dennis Grannan is the Associate Director of Music and principal Organist at Catalina.
The Combined United Methodist Women(UMW) and United Methodist Men(UMM) will be meeting at 9 a.m. on Saturday, September 9, in Fellowship Hall.
Outreach missions include Casa Maria, Blenman School.
On April 16, 1922, a small group of Tucson’s Christian faithful banded together to establish the first permanent Methodist Episcopal Church, South, congregation in Tucson. It was named University Methodist Church, South, because of its location at 3rd St (now University Blvd) and Euclid Ave near the University of Arizona. Near by was First Methodist Church. north. built in 1881.
As University Methodist Church grew, it helped establish two churches on the west side and the Catalina Mission Church on the east side. The Catalina Mission Church bought land at the southeast corner of East Bellevue St and North Country Club Rd. Shortly thereafter, a surplus barracks-stye structure was moved from Ryan Army Air Field to the vacant lot. It became the congregation’s home.
In 1939, efforts were made to merge University and First churches. but the vote failed at University Church by one vote. Early in 1945 the Bishop of the Southern California-Arizona Annual Conference, directed that University Church should move, so in August, the Church acquired the entire city block bounded by East Speedway Blvd, North Sawtelle Ave, East First St, and North Treat Ave for $21,000. (That city block is the present site of Catalina.)
As University Church proceeded with its plans to move, the Catalina Mission merged with University Church. Initially the new church was referred to as the University-Catalina Methodist Church. The current Fellowship Hall was the first building on the new site and for five years was used as the Sanctuary. The old Ryan Army Air Field barracks were moved from the Catalina Mission site to become the first Sunday School building. The church grew rapidly. By 1951 it had 1,759 members. As the church grew, the Youth Center, the current Sanctuary, a Children’s Building, and an Adult Education and Music Building were constructed.
The history of Catalina would not be complete without mention of the Sunday Night Forums. For 35 years, the Forums brought speakers from around the world to Tucson such as: Martin Niemoller, Senator Margaret Chase, Chief Justice William O Douglas, Jackie Robinson, Eleanor Roosevelt, Barry Goldwater, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, George H. Bush and Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
By the early 1960s, the church’s membership reached 4,141. By this time, as the city’s growth was occurring on the east and north sides, many families moved from the church’s neighborhood. It began a time of membership decline. However, the decline in members has not affected the commitment and quality of ministry Catalina provides. During those years, Catalina helped establish many other United Methodist Congregations in Tucson.