On October 10, 2010, the First United Methodist Churches of North Adams and Williamstown voted to merge into one church serving Northern Berkshire County, and as of March 15, 2012, we officially became New Hope United Methodist Church.
Beginning September 2013, we were offered a full-time pastor with pertinent education and experience, who would spend 20 percent of their time cultivating the current congregation and 80 percent of their time building relationships in the community, restarting the church, and planting new worshipping groups.
In 2015 we completed our search for a permanent home by purchasing a building at 192 State Street in North Adams. We have developed the exterior space to create the Greenspace@192: a space for outdoor worship gatherings and youth programming, a walking labyrinth, and a community garden. In 2018, a NOMADS Work Team demolished the interior walls to prepare for construction.
Beyond a place for the New Hope community to worship, we envisioned this space to include opportunities for community meals, open mic evenings, a warming station in the winter for those vulnerable to cold, a teaching kitchen for community members, and gallery space for local artists.
After the pandemic increased the costs of construction worldwide, we realized that we would not be able to occupy the space at 192 State Street. We eventually were able to sell the building, and we have moved permanently into the space owned by Congregation Beth Israel in North Adams, Massachusetts. From there we hope to begin re-building our congregation and community.
New Hope UMC serves the Northern Berkshire community and creates space for people to journey together authentically through our gathering, our worship, and our service to the community and world. We believe people find deep significance in life and can know God’s boundless love through practices and experiences rooted in Kindness, Compassion, Hospitality, and Hope. Our calendar of events includes worship, Sunday School, short term Bible studies, book discussions, fellowship opportunities, and ministries to the local and global communities.
As a Reconciling Congregation, we appreciate diversity and actively live the United Methodist motto: “Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors.”
Brief History of Methodism in North Adams
- 1823 – On Petersburgh Circuit in Troy Conference (the pastor would travel 100 miles within 3 weeks to fill all appointments. The congregations met in homes.)
- 1824 – Convened in a structure built for a glass factory. Paid $30 for lot on Center Street.
- 1843 – Bought Main Street corner lot and built wooden church for $400.
- 1873 – Brick building was built on same site. It was the largest in Troy conference.
- 1923 – Mission giving $10,000 to Korea for boy’s school. The school is now (2015) a Technical School.
- 1927 – Fire destroyed building.
- 1928 – Stone building built.
- 2003 – Named Historic Congregation by the New England Conference.
- 2009 – Building placed on market. Worship gatherings moved to First Congregational Church of North Adams.
- 2011 – Building sold to artist Eric Rudd for the purposes of becoming a museum.
Brief History of Methodism in Williamstown
- 1821 – Prayer meetings began in Daniel & Eliza Evans house on Water Street as one of eight small churches on the Petersburg Circuit in Troy Conference (the pastor would travel 100 miles within 3 weeks to fill all appointments. The congregations met in homes.)
- 1837 – First Sunday School organized.
- 1846 – First building dedicated.
- 1849 – Taken off Petersburg Circuit & received own pastor.
- 1872 – Present building dedicated, providing stability.
- 1875 – Gift of organ, to become focal point of music ministry of the church.
- 1910 – Renovation of interior, memorial stained glass windows installed.
- 2010 – Building sold to Williamstown Community Preschool.