Mary Taylor Church plans ribbon cutting for new addition

Mary Taylor Memorial United Methodist Church will celebrate the completion of a major building project that allows full accessibility to all on Saturday, Oct. 3, at 4 p.m.

The Wesley Center Education Building at 168 South Broad Street was constructed in 1961 and is home to Christian education classes, church meetings and a host of community ­based self-­help groups each week.

The celebration will mark the completion of a major renovation project granting access for functional needs, including an elevator and accessible restroom, among other improvements. These renovations will allow church members and members of the Milford community full access to all sections of the building.

The congregation, founded in 1836, was gifted the main church building in 1893 as a memorial to Mary Taylor, wife of industrialist Henry Augustus Taylor and mother of the Taylor children.

Accessibility to the main church building was improved in the 1980s with the construction of a ramp, and in 2010 with the addition of accessible restrooms.

The current project grants full accessibility to the second building within the church’s South Broad Street campus, and has been funded through a congregation­-wide capital campaign entitled “Lift Us Up.”

Construction started in May and will be concluded by late September.

The motto of the United Methodist Church is “Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors,” church officials said. “This accessibility project underscores Mary Taylor Memorial UMC’s commitment to this mission of being a welcoming and inclusive congregation.”

In recalling a recent struggle to get a wheelchair­-bound Sunday School volunteer to the second floor chapel, co-­chair of the capital campaign Tom Beyer made an emotional appeal to the congregation with the words “We will not fail her.”

The celebration event will include a ribbon­ cutting, music by a praise band, food, fellowship and tours of the renovations in Wesley Center. The public is welcome.