|Rev Colin Gracie
|Dromore Methodist Church, opened in 1871.|
Maypole Hill, Dromore.
Minister: Rev Colin Gracie
Telephone: 9269 3929
Morning Worship: 11.00am
Evening Worship: 6.00pm
Methodist work in Dromore was the result of an evangelistic outreach on the part of the Lisburn Circuit in 1770. In that year, one of the three ministers stationed in Lisburn was a young man called William Myles. He came to Dromore one day and preached in the street and a number of bystanders were won for Christ. Those early converts became the first Dromore Methodists. A Society was formed as part of the Lisburn Circuit. Among the converts in those days was Maria McNeill, described as “a poor, but respectable widow”. Mrs McNeill opened her home in Meeting Street for Methodist Services. By 1804 this accommodation proved inadequate for the increasing congregation. The use of the Market House was sought, but refused. Consent of Conference was obtained for the erection of a church, but as no means were available to build, the Society had to content with two small houses in Meeting Street. Out of these a large room was constructed in which services were held for eleven years.
A church was built in 1815, mainly through the enthusiasm of a man called John Ross, from Clare, near Lurgan. He came to live in Dromore as a young man and began to take part in the meetings of the Society. Very soon he became a most acceptable Local Preacher and Class Leader. For 40 years he watched over the Society with such care and devotion that he is justly called “the father of Dromore Methodism.” He secured the present site and the first church was opened and dedicated in September 1815. The building, which probably only occupied a corner of the site, was a plain structure with forms and desk. Later a pulpit was added. As Methodists continued to grow in number it became evident that a larger place of worship was needed. The foundation stone of the present church was laid in April 1870 and the church was opened for worship in March 1871. The cost of the building was £2,000. The manse was built in 1878 and the school room in 1896. Kitchens and toilets were added in the late 1930s and a car park was laid in 1966. The church purchased a Masonic Hall, which stood on this site, but being in poor condition it was demolished to make way for the enclosed park.
The present minister, the Rev Colin Gracie, previously minister of Birr, Athlone and Tullyamore Methodist Church commenced his ministry at Dromore and Priesthill on Sunday 13th July 2008. He succeeds the Rev Robert Wallace who retired from active work and now lives in Lisburn. A thanksgiving service for Mr Wallace was held in Priesthill Methodist Church on Sunday evening 22nd June.
A book written by J. Lennox Booth, gives a more detailed history of Dromore Methodist Church. To see the book, click on: Dromore Methodist, A Short History 1779-1979.