News and Press

Faith-Filled Future: Church Built by Freed Slaves to Celebrate Generation to Generation: 150 Years by Faith

Celebration will acknowledge up to five generations, including its 109-year-old member, as well as Corporate Partners Arts District Partners, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, One Arts Plaza, JacksonWalker, First UMC Dallas and Dallas Black Dance Theater

Dallas, TX – August 4, 2023 – The historic St. Paul United Methodist Church Downtown Dallas will commemorate 150 years of faithful service to the city of Dallas with special events beginning Saturday, August 19, Sunday August 20th. Amid splits and disaffiliations, the oldest Black UMC will celebrate its faith, resilience and hope during their “Year Long” celebrations, which began in May. The Anniversary happenings include the 150th Year Legacy Luncheon, 11:00 am Saturday, August 19th at The Arts District Mansion and two worship experiences Sunday, August 20 at 11 am and 3pm. The luncheon will recognize long-standing Arts District Partners, including the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, JacksonWalker, First UMC Dallas, Dallas Black Dance Theater, Booker T. Washington High School for Performing and Visual Arts and One Arts Plaza. Before, during and beyond the pandemic, these corporate partners have been consistent and significant in their determination to help us reach and impact the community. Additionally, members that span up to 5 generations will also be recognized, including its oldest member, Odessa Bowie who is 109 years old.

“St. Paul has a rich legacy and is proud to have been the home to members who have impacted our city, including the spiritual church home to the first black female city council member, Lucy Patterson, birthplace to Huston-Tillotson college, and so much more,” said Dr. Lucretia Facen, senior pastor.

More of the history and impact of the church will be revealed in a mini-museum area with a timeline of important facts of the church throughout the Anniversary weekend. On Sunday August 20 at 3pm at St. Paul Downtown, the current pastor who is only the 2nd woman to lead the church, will host all living pastors, community, business leaders and a myriad of faith communities back for a Special Anniversary Worship Experience featuring churches who were birthed out St. Paul during its 150th year history.

Throughout the weekend dancers, spoken word talent, African drumming, national gospel recording artists, special guest speakers and more will be featured for the celebration, including the newly appointed, first female, Millennial Pastor Tiffany Tarrant of the historic St. Johns Downtown Houston (the spiritual home of Beyonce) who is the keynote for Sunday, August 20 at 3pm.

St. Paul is the oldest African American Methodist Congregation in Dallas. Built by freed slaves and home to many historically significant moments in Dallas’ past, St. Paul is alive, well and is boldly pressing towards a future filled with hope and promise that will lead the way for a more vibrant and significant presence in the center of Dallas. Advanced interviews and onsite coverage are available.

Media Contacts:
Toska Medlock Lee
cell: 214-729-6144