A Brief History of Tice UMC
January of 1946, Tice began its life as a missionary church when Rev. Robert Weaver, pastor of Edgewood Methodist Church, began holding afternoon services in the Tice Community Club House. Attendance at the first service was 17. In December of 1946, tow lots were purchased with District funds along Waverly and Tice Streets and a building fund was started. On May 25, 1947, Rev. Weaver enrolled 70 charter members into Tice Methodist Church. A chapel from Buckingham Air Field was purchased and moved to the property in December of 1947. The first services held in the new church were on January 11, 1948. A grant from the Livingston Board was received to build a parsonage and it was constructed by the members, using materials taken from the closed Methodist Church in Brownsville. The bell of that church was hung in the tower of Tice. This bell, which is part of our present new sanctuary, is made of bronze and weighs 1,500 pounds! Another building was purchased from Buckingham Air Field in 1949 and became known as Rinkle Hall, in memory of Rev. E.J. Rinkle, a church member. It was used as a Sunday School Building.
By 1958 the church had outgrown Rinkle Hall and funds were raised for the construction of a new educational building which houses the present classrooms, fellowship hall, kitchen, nursery, and food pantry room. The Educational Building was designed by one of the members, Martin Gundersen. Rinkle Hall was moved across the street where it still stands and serves as the church’s Thrift Shop. The parsonage was damaged in 1960 by Hurricane Donna and was replaced with the second parsonage, a new concrete block house located on a lot one block south of the church on Lynneda Avenue. Beginning in 1954, Tice was honored to have Miss Rose Alice Mace as a member. Miss Mace had been a missionary to China for forty years and then became a minister in Iowa. After moving to Florida for health reasons, she was ordained a minister and was instrumental in starting North Ft. Myers Methodist Church. Eventually she came to Tice and carried on a loving ministry to the children of the church and the community until her death in 1965, at age 85. After paying off the second parsonage and the Educational Building, initial plans began to take shape for a new sanctuary in the late 1960’s. The old sanctuary was sold to the First Baptist Church of Tice in 1970 and moved. Four new lots were purchase along Tyrone and Tice Streets in 1972, giving us a plot of 8 lots in one piece. Ground-breaking for the second sanctuary was held on January 21, 1973. Also designed by Martin Gundersen, the new sanctuary was completed in seven months at a cost of $102,000.
The first service was held in the new sanctuary on August 26, 1973, and is still in use today. With the sanctuary paid off, a discussion in the late 1980’s turned toward a new parsonage. It was built on two lots donated by member, Oscar Blount. This third parsonage was completed in 1990 on the corner of Tice and Lynneda Avenue, directly across the street from the sanctuary. In 1996, Tice United Methodist Church celebrated its 50th Anniversary with special events taking place throughout the year. A special service was held on March 24, during which time a deed burning service was held for the parsonage, having paid off the mortgage. A 50th Anniversary Pictoral Directory was also made and a time capsule placed in the sanctuary to be opened on the Church’s 75th Anniversary in 2021.