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[p. 11]

Such are the bare facts of the history of the First Methodist Episcopal Church in Medford. Since 1828, the date of her incorporation, she has built and dedicated four houses of worship. In 1828 Methodist pastors were permitted to stay only one year in a station. The time limit has been changed since then, to two, three, five years, until now the time limit has been removed and a minister may be appointed annually to the same charge an indefinite number of times.

The doctrine and government of the First Methodist Episcopal Church are those of the Methodist Episcopal Church everywhere. This branch of the Church Universal ‘has always believed that the only infallible proof of the legitimacy of any branch of the Christian Church is in its ability to seek and to save the lost.’ Chief stress has ever been laid, not upon forms, but upon the essentials of religion. It holds that true Churches of Christ may differ widely in ceremonies, ministerial orders and government, but that the sole object should be to ‘fulfill to the end of time the original divine vocation as a leader in evangelizations, in all true reforms and in the promotion of fraternal relations among all branches of the one Church of Jesus Christ, with whom it is a co-worker in the spiritual conquest of the world for the Son of God.’

Of the prayers, the sacrifices, the loving service, the mourning and rejoicing, no record has been kept on earth. All is written upon the Lamb's Book of Life. As we close this sketch, names and faces of those gone before throng the memory—Bro. Joseph L. Goldthwait, broadminded, public spirited; Norton Newcomb;1 Thomas C. Newcomb, sunny tempered, charitable in all his judgments; Franklin Rand, optimistic, loyal, and deeply pious; William H. Miller, class leader for many years, and always

1 In 1851, Norton Newcomb, of the old Hanover Street Church in Boston, moved to Malden, living in a house high up from Salem street, near Medford line. After a careful outlook, he felt that he could be of more service in the Medford church, and there he placed his membership and influence, and later built a substantial home in our town. For over twenty years Father and Mother Newcomb were pillars of strength, and were worthily succeeded by their sons, Thomas, Charles and John.

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Norton Newcomb (3)
Edgar A. Thomas (1)
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