Hall United Methodist Church was established as a beacon of light during the dark days of slavery. It primarily served the community of Freetown, which offered solace to many free slaves and others, despite being surrounded by slaveholders in the immediate vicinity and adjoining communities of Marley Neck and Elvaton. Before 1887, no other church existed in any of thee communities. So, most Negroes worshipped at the nearby Mount Zion Magothy United Methodist Church, making the journey by foot horse and buggy.
During the summer of 1878, a group of Christian workers assembled upon the grounds opposite the intersection of Nabbs Creek and Solley Road to hold a "Bush Meeting". It was at the home of Mr. Saunders that this group of dedicated workers met and decided to erect a church. Due to the benevolence of William H. Hall, approximately four- and one-half acres were donated in 1886, for this work of faith, which was consequently named in his honor. Today, Hall United Methodist Church stands as a testament of those believes, who had the unwavering faith and courage to trust in the providential will of God.
The erection of Hall Chapel (as it was called then) has such an influence in the community that the congregation experienced significant growth. It was a challenge to accommodate the expanding membership, since the dimension of the first church were approximately thirty feet long and twenty feet wide. Its four corners rested on pillars of stone. The exterior was covered with vertical boards; there windows were installed of each side wall and the floor of the altar was elevate about seven to nine inches above the main floor. This edifice would later be designated, as both a church and a school.
When the Marley Neck School for colored students was destroyed by the fire in 1890, classes were then held in the church facility. In 1898, it was then realized that the church needed to expand its capacity to provide more services. Thus, the newly incorporated Hall United Methodist Episcopal Church was constructed on the wall above the entrance and ow kerosene lamps that were used having pull chains and wall reflectors. Following, the church would undergo several progressive building renovations throughout its history. These changes in development reflected the progression of the church in its times. In March of 1926, the church was renovated at a substantial cost of $1600. Most of the funds were raised by the efforts of a vision impaired women name Margaret Howard, who had sponsored a Railroad Rally to accomplish such a feat. Notably, the first electric lights were installed in 1932. At this time, Reverend James Green served at the past of Halls's Church, as well as Pastor of Mount Zion Magothy Church. It was common then for churches to share the same pastor. To accommodate both churches, separate service were held with services schedules alternating between 11am and 3pm.
Another renovation of Hall's Church in 1940, beautified the edifice with the addition of a hall that was purchased from the Odd Fellows Lodge. The remodeling effort continued in 1956 with updated amenities such as; a Pastor's Study, and a choir and communion room. Also installed were a self-serve communion rail and an extension to the choir loft. The sanctuary was decorated with beautiful memorial windows between 1958 through 1961. By October 3, 1970, new additions including an education building, restrooms, a library, a new Pastor's Study, closets, a furnace room and a renovated sanctuary marked an important transformation, under the most capable leadership of Reverend Harry E. Dixon.
Subsequently, in 1981, the church celebrated its Mortgage Burning service conducted by Reverend Dion and officiated by Reverend Julius Ford. The celebration ended quickly when the church was condemned in 1984. The congregation then fellowshipped at Mount Zion Magothy Church, in separate service, conducted by Reverend Ford, who served as the pastor of both churches. It was five years later when the jubilant congregation of Halls' Church entered its new edifice equipped with a beautiful sanctuary and education building. Alth ough there were architectural changes, the church would also experience change in Pastoral leadership. Revered Fords' illustrious full-time career in ministry ended.
After Reverend Ford's retirement in 1992, an immediate succession of pastors would occur. Reverend Richard Ross Hicks, his successor was greatly admired for his missionary works in Africa. After his departure in 1995, Reverend Daniel C. Mclellan, a great Biblical expositor became the pastor. Coincidentally, the church endured yet another setback, during his tenure, when the education building was heavily damaged by a severe snowstorm in 2003. As a result, the parishioners considered their options to worship, and leased facilities at Magothy Church for a brief time. Yet despite the challenges toward reconstruction efforts, the resilient congregation of Halls' returned in the Spring of 2003, with a mind to rebuild. Reverend Mclellan would serve four more years until his retirement in 2007.
In July 2007, Reverend Patricia Allen was the first women to be appointed a pastor in the church's history. Under the leadership, the church continues to experience spiritual renewal and growth. Outreach ministry has become the hallmark of administration, as evidenced through revitalization of ministry programs and ecumenical alliances within the Faith community. She was a welcomed and refreshing presence in the church. Under the leadership of Rev. Allen, Hall began construction to renovation their fellowship hall. Rev. Allen ended her tenure at Hall's, in June 2015. On July 1, 2105, Hall's welcomed Rev. Harry E. Smith Jr. as its pastor. And on September 25, 2015, Hall's celebrated the re-opening of their fellowship hall.
Remarkably, each era of the church has brought about its own uniqueness of significant change with noteworthy achievements that were accomplished through the faithful and dedicated work of members known and unknown. This indeed is a great day of reflection and commemoration, as we celebrate the God of our Salvation, for his faithfulness throughout one-hundred and thirty-nine years of transformation! We pay homage to those saints that have gone on before us leaving a legacy of good works. In retrospect, the Lord has preserved this church, for such a time as this. Down through the years of transformation, Hall United Methodist Church has truly been Chosen, Changed and Charged! Celebrate the greatness in you!
Without faith, it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him, must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. Hebrew 11:6