Hart’s UMC celebrates former pastor with stained glass installation
— Hart’s United Methodist Church will hold its annual homecoming service Sunday at 11 a.m., but this year the gathering holds special meaning.
While homecoming is a Methodist tradition, Hart’s will have a special celebration honoring the memory of the late Norma Bailey who pastored the church from 1985 to 1995, according to Hank Passi, a member of the church on Turkey Point Road near North East.
“I became a member as a result of Rev. Bailey,” Passi said Tuesday. He said their common interest in sports made the friendship even more endearing.
Bailey died in February, several years after retiring. She was assigned to Hart’s as a student pastor and then served over 17 years at Christ United Methodist Church in Salisbury until her retirement, when she returned to Cecil County and settled in Cecil Woods.
To honor Bailey, Hart’s congregation had stained glass windows installed in the church.
“These are over 100 years old,” Passi said of the colorful windows. “They came from a Presbyterian church in Newark. When the University of Delaware took over the building, the windows were donated to the church.”
In storage for more than 20 years, someone suggested they finally be installed in memory of Bailey.
“The real special part of this service will be the dedication of the windows,” Passi noted.
Installed two weeks ago, the church commissioned a Virginia company to customize the windows to the eight assigned locations in the sanctuary.
“Not very many churches have windows like these,” the retired colonel said. “What a way to celebrate homecoming!”
Hart’s UMC has installed new stained glass windows to honor its late Rev. Norma Bailey, who pastored the church from 1985 to 1995.