Mafair UMC is a mid-sized Christian congregation of The United Methodist Church located in Kingsport, Tennessee (part of the Holston Conference). We have a reputation for friendliness, and we’d love to have you as our guest. If you’re looking for a place to worship or a new church home, please join us!
Reaching IN to grow in Christ,
Reaching OUT to win and serve,
Reaching UP to worship and praise.
Making disciples for Jesus Christ by sharing God’s unchanging message with a changing world.
Mafair United Methodist Church aims to be a contemporary church meeting the needs of people while holding on to the Biblical truths in the United Methodist tradition.
Mafair United Methodist Church is a Christian congregation whose faith is grounded in Jesus Christ as Savior, as revealed through Scripture. We believe our faith must express itself in actions that demonstrate we are children of God whose Wesleyan understanding of Scripture, tradition, reason and experience leads us to reach out to others with the Good News of the Gospel. We live as family members who share together in learning, fellowship, joys and sorrows.
Mafair United Methodist Church is a merger of Fairfield Methodist Church, formerly located on Eastman Road, and Maple Street Methodist Church. The merger occurred August 11, 1949, and the church’s name, Mafair, joined the first two letters of Maple and the first four letters of Fairfield.
The beginning date of Fairfield Methodist Church, one of Kingsport’s oldest churches, is uncertain. After the merger, Fairfield was sold and the site is now a parking lot. Its church bell, installed in the Mafair tower, still calls us to worship each Sunday.
Maple Street Church began as a Sunday School in the Holston Apartment Building on Dale Street in 1929. The Sunday School soon outgrew the Dale Street quarters, and Maple Street Church was organized on May 11, 1930, with 174 members. Despite two inches of snow, 100 were baptized in the Holston River that day. Circumstances soon made it apparent that Maple Street Church must either enlarge or relocate. After praying all night for guidance, Rev. McConnell received a vision from God that the church should relocate. His vision included Mafair’s present site.
“He called my office and asked me to take him to look for the site revealed in his vision,” remembers Holiday Smith, a charter member of Mafair. “We drove up Center Street and when we reached Lamont Street, he said, ‘this is it!’ We found the real estate sign seen in the vision lying in the rubble piled on the lot. The real estate office asked $12,000 for the whole block. We then called up the bishop who happened to be staying in town that night, and he was very moved. He said, ‘This is great, I can see a great church here that will lift its cross up on the community to draw people to Christ for a hundred years … I am thrilled by the potential of this church!'”
After the bishop’s statement, the Rev. McConnell wrote a $100 check from his personal account as a binder on the property. The church treasury had a balance of $35.02 at the time. The Maple Street property was sold to the Walnut Street Methodist Church. Ground was broken on January 18, 1950, and the first service in the new building was held December 24, 1950. Until that time, Mafair members worshipped in Lincoln School.
The Education Building was opened in August of 1958. Over time, the sanctuary was air-conditioned, the parking lot was paved, outside recreational facilities were developed, a new parsonage was purchased, an organ installed and sanctuary refurbished.
In March of 2020, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Mafair started livestreaming its worship services on Facebook for the benefit of those who were in lockdown. That weekly livestream continues today, now hosted on YouTube.