History

Waitsfield United Church

The Waitsfield United Church of Christ was most recently a federated church affiliated with the Troy Conference of the United Methodist Church and the Vermont Conference of the United Church of Christ.  This federation, begun in 1923 between the Methodist and Congregational Churches of Waitsfield, was dissolved in 1998 under the advice of both Conferences, in order to simplify church administration. Most boards were duplicated and it was difficult to fill so many leadership positions, and few members felt strong denomination identity.

From 1941, when  the Methodist Church was sold to the Town,  the Waitsfield Federated Church used the Third Congregational Church building , the current structure built in 1873.  The Methodists’ bell was installed in the Congregational steeple in 1945.  The Town offices and school gym were in the old Methodist Church building for a time, and it is now shops and apartments.

The first Congregational Church building was up on the common, and the second one was across the river, near the present Mill Cemetery.  Some of its beams may be seen recycled in the current building’s rafters.  A more complete history of these buildings can be found in Richard Bisbee’s book, History of the Town of Waitsfield 1789-2000.

During the federated years, the church often alternated employing Congregational and Methodist ministers.