Salem United Methodist Church
Serving our community for over 200 years making disciples for Christ

Serving our community for over 200 years making disciples for Christ

News From The Pews

The BEST place to find out what is going on at Salem UMC is right HERE.

Welcome to Salem UMC's home on the web!!!
This is where you will find all the up to date information on all things Salem UMC!!!
This site is upated regularly, so if you have a story that you feel would benfit our church
or our community - we want to hear from YOU!!!

Simply email your story to:

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He Deserves the Medal of Honor

Posted on May 30, 2021 at 10:45 PM Comments comments (99)

This is Lt. Roger E. Smith.
Killed in action during world war II...

I was tasked with telling his story a few years ago
and I was STUNNED that his heroic actions did not 
earn him the MEDAL OF HONOR...

I may have bit off more than I could chew
but I promised his remaining family that I would do
EVERYTHING I could to see to it that he got this 
MEDAL OF HONOR posthumously,,,

So far...
My attempts have fallen on deaf ears ...
Then the pandemic hit...
And now I'm here to ask for YOUR help...

Please feel free to read the next  story below this 
titled "Our Cross: A reminder of Memorial Day"...
I promise it will leave you thinking  

I ask you  to contact Senator Marsha Blackburn
and plead our case for this to be given a consideration...

Here is Senator Blackburn's local contact info:

Marsha Blackburn:
3322 West End Ave #610
Nashville, TN 37203


Our Cross: A Reminder of Memorial Day (revisited)

Posted on May 30, 2021 at 12:15 PM Comments comments (99)

Our Cross: A Reminder of Memorial Day


When I first thought about doing a story for Memorial Day

I had NO CLUE that the story I would share would have

the impact on me as this one has...

You see...

This story is about the small cross that stands

on our altar and how it came to be...


For those who may not know...

The Smith family has been a prominent fixture in our

tiny church family dating back to at least World War 2...

(maybe before, but I'm not certain)


On the back of the cross

it reads:

Dr. and Mrs. Sidney Smith

In memory of our son

Lt Roger Eastman Smith

Killed in the service of his country


Thanks to the help of Linda Treby and Charles Manning

we now know how this cross came to being and the importance

it holds especially as we enter Memorial Day weekend...

Being this is Memorial Day weekend, we felt it was best

to share the story of Lieutenant Roger Eastman Smith

and his bravery at the battle of Guam for which he lost

his life and the cross was dedicated to his name...

The Battle of Guam


(Taken from Britannica Encylopedia)


In the hours following the attack on Pearl Harbor 7 Dec.1941

the Japanese military stormed the island of Guam.

The original battle began 8 Dec and lasted until 10 Dec.

when the Japanese had taken full control of the island...


21 July - 10 Aug 1944

America Takes Back Guam


In Attacking Guam, U.S. forces were not just aqcuriing a fine harbor

and a number of airfields to use in future operations, but were also

liberating a U.S. Territory..


As elsewhere, Guam's Japanese garrison fought practically

to the last man...

American casualties included some 1,700 dead and 6,000 wounded...

Japanese deaths totaled some 18,000...

The Japanese forces on the island had built an elaborate network

of bunkers, artillery placements, and other fortifications (pillboxes).


In all, the number of Japanese defenders totaled 19,000...

The landing began on 21 July on the west coast of the island

and the landing force consisted of both Marine and Army units

from General Gieger's III Amphibious Corps, in all 55,000 strong.

They were soon established solidly ashore despite a series of fierce

night attacks by the Japanese over the first few days of the battle.



It took a week for the Americans to link their two beach heads, but

by then much of the Japanese strength had been dissipated and their

commanding general had been killed as well...


The surviving Japanese units fought on for another two weeks,

gradually retiring toward the North end of the island, before

organized resistance largely ended...

Even then Guam's mountainous terrain helped a few die hards

to hold out. Some small units fought on until after the war,

causing occasional U. S. casualties, and one solitary veteran

only emerged from the jungle to surrender and return

to Japan in 1972.

One Of Our Own

(The following came from Lt. Smith's military records)


Roger Eastman Smith volunteered on 27 August 1942

as a Private First Class.

Was called to active duty on 27 January 1943 as a

member of the Seventeenth Candidates Class,Marine Corps.

School, Quantico, Virginia, with the rank of 2nd Lieutenant.

Was subesequently promoted to 1st Lieutenant.

Was killed in action on 21 July 1944.

Memorial services were held on 8 October 1944

at Salem Methodist Church in Murfreesboro, Rutherford County,

Tennessee. Dean N. C. Beasley and Mrs. Mary Dennell, each of

whom knew Lieutenant Smith spoke at these rights.


Smith - Rogers - Reeves VFW Post was named for three of the

Rutherford County young men who lost their lives during World War II.


Posthumous Awards:


1. Navy Cross -

Presented during chapel hour at MTSU, Murfreesboro, TN


2. - Purple Heart


3. Navy Unit Commendation with ribbon bar

Awarded the First Provisional Marine Brigade for service

on Guam in the Marianas Islands.


4. Asiatic - Pacific Campaign Medal


5. Vicory Medal - World War II


Awards Citation:


"For extraordinary heroism as Mortar Platoon Leader attached

to the First Battalion, Fourth Marine Reinforced, First Provisional

Marine Brigade, in action against enemy Japanese forces on

the island of Guam in the Marianas islands on 21 July 1944.

Moving his mortar platoon up from the beach in the rear of

advancing riflemen, First Lieutenant Smith obeserved a wounded

rifleman lying close to a hostile pillbox and, halting his men, fearlessly

advanced to the aid of the marine under a continuous barrage

of Japanese emplacement.


Engaging the enemy with rifle fire and hand grenades, he held

his position despite the fierce oppostion and attempted to neuteralize

the pillbox with a flame thrower, but failing in this he continued to move

up on the ememy while firing his rifle and, although mortally wounded

during the bitter hostilities, succeded in silencing the hostile gun - battery.


By his determined initiative, valiant fighting spirit, and resolute fortitude

in the face of terrific odds, First Lieutenant Smith contributed maerially

to the ultimate success of our forces in recapturing this vital strong - hold,

and his nwavering devotion to duty throughout was in keeping with the highest

tradition of the United States Naval Service.


He gallantly gave his life for his country."



Something To Ponder:


As I prepared for this story SEVENTY FIVE YEARS after First Lieutenant Smith's death

I can't help but to wonder WHY he was never granted the Medal of Honor???


If you have time this weekend, I encourage you to re-read the above citation

and then visit the following website to read stories of those who were awarded

the medal during World War II.

You cand find that site here:



I brought this story to the website a few days earlier than planned because

I want those who attend church this weekend to SEE the cross and UNDERSTAND

that this small cross is just a tiny token for one man's bravery and a family's loss...



It's a small reminder that Memorial Day isn't about cookouts and three day weekends...

It's about those who gave their life so we can enjoy ours today...



Thank you sir for your service and sacrifice.

Making old things new!!!

Posted on May 16, 2021 at 2:55 PM Comments comments (6)

Next Sunday
(May23rd, 2021)
Salem UMC will be open with out restrictions
and our pews will be back in their normal places!!!

Not only that, but...

We WILL reintroduce our time of morning fellowship
BEFORE the service...
(Fellowship 8:15 - Service 8:45)


We will also see a return to Sunday School activities
following the service at 10:00 am...

If you are still not comfortable with the restricitons being
lifted, you are still invited to participate and wear a mask if you wish...

Please join us and help make old things new again!!!

Welcome to the family!!!

Posted on May 16, 2021 at 2:45 PM Comments comments (0)

One of our favorite vocalist has finally become an official
member of the Salem family!!!

Melonee Oatsvall, you are loved, and we are delighted to welcome 
you as the family member you have already been!!!

church camp scholarships

Posted on April 26, 2021 at 1:35 AM Comments comments (10)

It's hard to believe that summer is just around the corner!!!
With that being said...
Summer camps will be here before we know it!!!

If you know of a deserving child who would like
to attend a summer church camp, there are FOUR scholarships
available to the youth here at Salem UMC...

Please let Pastor Thad Collier know if your child or grandchild
is interested in attending...

We want to hear from YOU

Posted on April 19, 2021 at 1:30 AM Comments comments (0)

Church friends & family...

Let’s face facts...

Life as we once knew is most likely not coming back...

Therefore we have to plan accordingly...

This is where YOU come in...

We want to hear from YOU...


Forget that we are a 200 year old church...

Forget that we are small in numbers...

Imagine that YOU have the opportunity to create the church of YOUR DREAMS from scratch...

What would that church look like???

Would it have one service on Sunday with Sunday school before / after???

What would that church do for the community???

We encourage you to think and let us know what this dream church would be like in your minds...

Drop us an email at

Thank you for your love and support over the past year and we look forward to hearing your thoughts...

Join us for our Easter service

Posted on April 3, 2021 at 11:05 AM Comments comments (94)

Church family and friends,
As we prepare to celebrate Easter, please remember that
this will be our first major celebration of the year and we must
proceed with caution...

With that being said...

WELOME to Salem UMC!!!

Our pews will be open - yet socially distanced.

If you can't find a pew to your liking you are invited
to sit in our Fellowship hall and watch on Facebook live...

You can sit in the parking lot and listen on the radio (FM 89.3)...

We look forward to seeing you!!!

Facebook live on TV

Posted on March 7, 2021 at 4:45 PM Comments comments (0)

Beginning next Sunday (3/14) we will be opening our
fellowship hall to those who may not feel comfortable
sitting in the sanctuary just yet...

We will have our service streaming via FACEBOOK LIVE
on our tv, so please come on in and enjoy our service
with a cup of coffee!!!

What a homecoming!!!

Posted on March 7, 2021 at 4:30 PM Comments comments (1)

Words can not express how THANKFUL we are for the
AWESOME homecoming we expreinced this morning (Sun. 3/7)

This was our first Sunday to worship together under one roof
in 2021 and it was so AWESOME to see everyone!!!

We could not have been any more grateful for all of the love and support
that our community has shown us during the past few months
during our SECOND shut down of this pandemic...

So THANK YOU and please feel free to visit us

You're invited

Posted on March 2, 2021 at 9:25 PM Comments comments (89)

Salem Church Family - Greetings in Christ!

Sunday’s worship service was a bit unusual. Almost as unusual as the previous Sunday’s Zoom service.

We lost electricity and wound up asking the folks in their cars to just come on in and worship in the Sanctuary together if they would feel safe doing that. There were seven of us, all spread out and wearing masks in the sanctuary for the first time in quite a while.

Well, we decided it would be as good a time as any to ask all of you if you would like to begin worshiping in the Sanctuary again.

So, if you would feel safe worshiping together, distancing and wearing masks, you are invited to come back to the sanctuary this Sunday, March 7, 2021 for our service beginning at 8:45am. We will still have worship on Facebook Live, Drive-in Radio service 89.3FM and on our Website.

This is Communion Sunday, please have Bread and Juice available for receiving Communion if you are worshiping at home.



Our 3rd Lenten Study will be 7:00 PM tomorrow, Wednesday night March 3, 2021 via Zoom. We will be finishing our quick study of Isaiah 53. Please reread that great Chapter and the last three verses of Isaiah 52.

Feel free to reach out to pastor Thad Collier via e-mail
to obtain your zoom invite:


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