Located at 1807 Duncan Road in West Knox County, Zion is an active, children friendly church. Sunday School hour begins at 9:45 AM in the church sanctuary. The Sunday School Class is taught by Charles Derryberry and James Houk II. Church service immediately follows at 11 o’clock. Following the children’s address, the young children in attendance are escorted to the Fellowship Hall. A children’s Sunday School of Bible stories, scriptures and crafts is conducted simultaneouly during the worship service.Traditional celebrations at Zion UMC are:
- an annual community wide Easter Egg Hunt,
- Homecoming (1st Sunday in October),
- Community Wide Costume Party at the end of October,
- and a Children’s Christmas Program.
The church has a monthly covered dish supper as well as individual meetings of the men’s and women’s clubs. There is an outdoor pavilion where these meeting are held when the weather permits.
Zion is a member of the Holston Conference of the UMC and is a member of the Knoxville District.
Special activities of Zion UMC include the awarding of children’s Bibles to all of our Sunday School participants as well as study Bibles for the youth of our church. To encourage graduate education at the collegiate level, Zion has a scholarship program to provide monetary aid to students for college tuition expenses.
History of Zion United Methodist Church
Zion United Methodist Church has a rich tradition that reaches back across most of a century.
It probably began in the mid 1850′s when a group of people met in an abandoned school house on Derris Drive near Lyon’s Bend on the left side of the river and organized a church.
Records claim that Mr. Felix Geizentanner, a Swiss immigrant, founded the church in 1892 and it was first known as Geizentanner Methodist Episcopal Church, South.
It is believed that in 1892, members of the church used the material from the old school building to build a new church on the land donated by Mr. Flannigan. The church was built on the church’s present location and was named Zion. The first pastor was Reverend G.D. Herman.
After lightning destroyed the church building in April 1912, a brush arbor was used until the present auditorium was built in 1915.
Over the past many years, the church building and grounds have benefitted by continued improvements. The basement of the church contains a fellowship hall and kitchen. Once each month the congregation and visitors gather for a covered dish dinner. This area also serves to host meetings each month of the individual men’s and women’s clubs for a meal and fellowship. During the Sunday morning worship hour, the children are escorted to this same area for Bible Stories, crafts and an appropriate program for this age group.
Adjacent to the church building is a covered pavilion that is used for church dinners when the weather permits.
Many of Zion’s activities are oriented to the children. There is an annual Easter Egg Hunt, Costume Party at the end of October, and a Christmas program starring the children at Yule time.
Zion Homecoming is an annual event celebrated the first Sunday in October. Following the worship service, a meal for the congregation and guests is held on the church grounds. Thereafter, everyone gathers in the church sanctuary for entertainment provided by members of the congregation and guests. Although the program is not directed to the children, it is one that they particularly enjoy.
Zion UMC is a site of constancy on a hilltop in West Knoxville. Despite her years, she is not focused on the past and she certainly fails to show her age. Her devotion to her community is obvious. It is a place of worship, fellowship, Bible Study and family. Her doors and her heart stand open to welcome anyone who desires good Christian fellowship in the House of God.