About Us 1000x362

About Us


Centenary United Methodist Church is located in the heart of downtown Richmond, Virginia. Though the focus of our mission is downtown, our members come from all over the metro area — from Chesterfield to Ashland, from Varina to Short Pump.

We believe in the importance of worship and of serving others. We believe worship leads to service, and that we can’t serve others without being touched by God’s grace in worship. Sunday is a big day here. We gather from all over the Richmond area to worship God and encourage one another on this journey of life and faith. Friday is also a big day here. That is the day we feed over 200 hungry people in the downtown Richmond area.

When you come to Centenary, you will find a congregation ready to welcome you as you are. Whether you’ve been a Christian for many years, or just want to know what being a Christian’s all about, we’re all on a path of questioning and learning. There are no dumb questions — nor are there any questions that can’t be asked!

We appreciate the arts. We have a reputation for outstanding performances of often forgotten works of classical music, periodic hymn festivals and partnerships with other artists. We believe the arts have the capacity to speak God’s word in inspiring and challenging ways.

We are a church where lay leadership, service, and participation are vital to the fulfillment of our mission. Every person’s gifts and talents are essential! We can help you find your gifts and use them for God and others.

A Reconciling Congregation

We’re focused on reconciliation. We take pride in being the first Reconciling Congregation in the Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church. The Reconciling Movement is a movement in the United Methodist Church advocating the full inclusion of LGBTQ people in the life of the church.

Reconciliation means simply that we take seriously God’s work in Jesus Christ to make broken people and a broken world whole. That means we’re always trying to help individuals find healing and wholeness and live into their God-given potential. We’re trying to bring together people who are often separated. And we’re trying to find ways to join God’s work of healing in the world. We want to be a place where everyone feels welcome regardless of age, race, national origin, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, educational or economic background, and physical or mental ability.

Being part of a church like Centenary can stretch us as we strive to love as God loves us all. That’s our calling, because we believe that every person God has created has sacred worth and we believe that God’s love shown to the world in Jesus is offered to all people without exception.

If you want to be part of a church that will accept you where you are, help you grow in faith, develop life-changing, lasting relationships with others, and give you opportunities to be part of God’s reconciling work in the city and beyond in ways that make a difference, we invite you to come and check us out.

CUMC Statement Regarding Marriage and Weddings

At Centenary UMC we believe that all persons are beloved children of God and entitled to full participation in all aspects of church life.  Further we believe that marriage is a gift of God for all people regardless of age, religious affiliation, race, sexual orientation or gender identity. In preparing persons for marriage our pastors seek to equip them for a lifelong, loving, covenantal and flourishing relationship.  We also believe that through that relationship they may learn to love God, themselves and one another in deeper and more meaningful ways thus moving toward John Wesley’s ideal of being perfected in love.

Unfortunately, while we believe LGBTQ weddings are in agreement with the United Methodist understanding of marriage, due to the current Discipline of the United Methodist Church and stance of the leadership of the Virginia Annual Conference we are unable to conduct these weddings without exposing our pastors to legal persecution and loss of employment and/or credentials.  We earnestly yearn, and will continue to advocate, for the day when the United Methodist Church will recognize all God’s children as equally valuable and we will be able to bless our LGBTQ  brothers and sisters with the opportunity to celebrate their marriages in our sanctuary.

Worship at Centenary

We hope you will join us for worship.

Traditional Worship Service: Sunday @ 10:30 am

Nursery care provided.

Our History

Historic Centenary in downtown Richmond and Trinity in the far west end are sister descendants of the mother church that built its first building in Shockoe Bottom in 1799. In 1810 land was purchased for a church on Shockoe Hill. In 1827 a larger church, named Trinity, was built in Shockoe Bottom.

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