Manassas St. Thomas United Methodist Church was established in June 1990 when Manassas UMC and St. Thomas UMC were merged. Manassas UMC was founded in 1867, but its present site was built in 1963. Although the church was on five acres of prime property on Sudley Road, it was not experiencing growth. St. Thomas, however, had outgrown its existing facilities in Westgate which was also built in 1963. Even though an education wing and a classroom annex had been added, with their continued growth, more classroom space was needed.
The Alexandria District Superintendent, Dr. F. Douglas Dillard, Jr. saw the opportunity to strengthen Manassas UMC by merging it with St. Thomas. With the merger approved, larger facilities were imminent. The Bi-District Board of Church Location and Building felt Manassas would best be served by building a United Methodist Church with high visibility on the Sudley Road site.
In the spring of 1992 after the Westgate property had been sold, the St. Thomas congregation relocated to the Manassas UMC campus. We were faced with many challenges due to limited space. As the sanctuary would not accommodate everyone comfortably, a third worship service was added on Sunday evenings. The Manassas parsonage was converted to an Administration Building on the first floor for the staff, and the basement was remodeled for the youth. For additional classrooms, two trailers were leased. These challenges served to strengthen us as a congregation uniting us in our faith and our vision.
Our groundbreaking on June 7, 1992 was celebrated with the entire church family pulling the plow, followed by a picnic and festivities. The enthusiasm and excitement continued to grow as we watched with anticipation the construction of our new church. Our first worship service in the new facility was held on February 27, 1994 with the Service of Consecration the following week on March 6, 1994. Manassas St. Thomas UMC stands today as a shining testimony to those before us who have given faithful service to the glory of God and the fellowship of Man.
Pastor Matthew came to us in 2007 with the chief responsibility to form and serve as the Lead Pastor for our Haymarket Campus of St. Thomas UMC. Since that time, the Haymarket campus has thrived and become a vital part of our church's overall ministry.
The first church service for the Haymarket Campus was held in February 2008 at Giuseppe's Italian Restaurant on Main Street in Haymarket. In the fall of that year we expanded to two services to best utilize our limited space at that location.
In January 2009, after a successful first year, we relocated by renting space at Gravely Elementary School in Haymarket for our services and other ministries. The new location provided our growing congregation with more space for worship activities and also allowed for an expanded children's ministry and spiritual formation classes.
During 2011/12, our church desired to decrease distinctions between the two campuses (Manassas and Haymarket). At a called Church Conference in June of 2012, we decided to have our name be "St. Thomas United Methodist Church", thereby removing "Manassas" and "Haymarket". The Virginia Conference of the UMC held its meeting in Roanoke on June 22nd - 24th, 2012. The Annual Conference approved the name change of our church to “St. Thomas UMC” for both Manassas and Haymarket.
In the Fall of 2015, in order to improve our outreach to the community in Haymarket, our Haymarket campus began using the name "Haymarket Church." Haymarket Church remains a proudly United Methodist Church under the St. Thomas UMC umbrella and the two campuses continue to support each other through things like prayer, staffing, administrative help, sharing resources, pitching in on events, and much more. For more information about Haymarket Church, you can visit haymarketchurch.org. Each campus has its own distinct ministry and serves a unique community, but we are partners in the work of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. Together, we are impacting the communities of Manassas and Haymarket with the love of Jesus Christ!