The Methodist church has been serving the people of Lansing, Michigan for more than 170 years. They first met in 1845 in a log cabin. They later moved into a converted barn. In 1861, Central Methodist Episcopal Church was officially organized. An initial building was dedicated in 1863 but it didn’t take long to outgrow the space. A design by A.B. Jennings was chosen for the present building in March of 1888.
The cornerstone was laid in 1889, and the building was completed in 1890. Elijah Myers served as the main architect while Israel Gillett was the supervising architect. The builder was H.W. Coddington. The building’s final cost was $34,030. With the addition of stained glass windows, lighting and other furnishings the total cost was $41,842.
There have been additions, added touches and a name change to Central United Methodist Church through the years. A Moeller Pipe Organ was added in 1921. An illuminated cross was added to the top of the building in 1922. A separate chapel was added in 1942. This chapel features artwork reminiscent of old European churches. A carillon with 36 bells came along in 1951.
A parsonage was added along with several renovations and redecorations to the original sanctuary through the years. Today the church also has a library that includes more than 5,000 books.