Burns United Methodist Church History


The People And
Their Dream

There was the need for a church and 95 people set out to establish that fact. Dr. Henry L. Weiss, Superintendent of the Denver District of the Methodist Church, gave the people and Rev. Dean Shaw permission to purchase the house at 1000 Ursula Street to be used as a church and parsonage.

The Rev. Shaw, his wife, and two children took up residency. Each Saturday night the Shaws stacked every vestige of personal belongings in one bedroom and set up folding chairs in every room to make ready for Church and Sunday School.

Every inch of floor space was used to the greatest advantage. Sunday breakfast was hurried and the remains whisked up, for even the kitchen served as a classroom. Sunday School attendance averaged between 150-200. Two sessions of both church and Sunday School were necessary. Church services were held in the heated garage. The furniture moving process went into reverse on Sunday nights.

After the Jr. and Sr. High fellowship meetings, the 2 garages and living room were converted for Kindergarten use. Monday through Friday, Kindergarten was held for 120 children because of lack of space in the public school. Kindergarten was over at 3:15 and shortly thereafter, the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, and other children's groups arrived. Evenings were no different. Church committees, choir, and other church organizations were likely to meet at 1000 Ursula almost any night.

Because of the many demands of the living room, the Shaws used one bedroom as a family sitting room. But, this also served a double role, even on weekdays - it was the Church office. Once a month there were fellowship dinners at the parsonage.

As busy as the Shaw home was, Rev. Shaw was a full-time student at Iliff Theology Seminary. Mrs. Shaw also baby-sat for three young children plus her own two children. At the end of the first year, there were 186 members. Life Magazine did an article in 1954 about the Shaws and church life. It also covered the groundbreaking service for the new sanctuary held June 6th, 1954.

Website history: Original designer Howard Baird, Still using his interior pages format

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