What's Happening

June 4 & 5 - Saturday and Sunday with optional meals in the dining hall and overnight stay in a Lodge/cabin. On Sunday we will celebrate Pentecost with outdoor worship by the River! (Livestream option available). We will be organizing rides/carpools for those who want or need rides.


2022 Retreat Program Details: “Connection & Exploration”
We hope these opportunities offer balm to our souls and guide us in some fun communal activities. All retreaters choose up to 3 intergenerational interactive creative arts sessions to attend-- two 1-hour morning sessions and one after lunch. Options offered so you choose what you do. Children, youth, adults, older adults welcome at any sessions—Let’s be creative and have some fun together!
Session Options:
  • Making Bird Houses – Walter Schmidt provides materials, tools, and guidance for small groups to build bird houses
  • Photography Nature Walk – Jeehye Pak guides photographers (BYO phones or cameras) in taking photos of nature’s variety and beauty. Wonder at God’s creation from behind a lens.
  • Drumming for Fun, Community, and Uplift – Cheryl Conway & Melany Burrill provide drums, etc. and guidance. Create rousing or pensive rhythms together. Experience the fun & uplift of communal drumming! All ages welcome. No prior experience needed. 
  • Creating Sigils to Foster Your Aspirations – Bethany Quinn Sigils are symbols that you create from letters or words that are meaningful to you. They are used to signal to others and/or to further an aspiration. They have been used since at least the Neolithic era - in fact, the Christian fish symbol, the ichthys, was derived from a sigil. People create sigils as a way to plant a desired outcome into their subconscious, as a sort of prayer. Create and decorate your own sigil.  
  • Playing with Poetry – Nancy Holland & Elaine Friebele Explore your inner poet and have fun. We’ll read a few poems together and, together, write some poems. No pressure! Please bring paper/notebook/digital device and writing implement.
  • Walking Meditation – Neal Christie Step back from daily noise and busy-ness and participate in this intentionally quiet meditation. Participants come back together after a set time of quite meditation to share, then end in silence.
  • Art & the Dove -- Billy Friebele In this workshop, we will tap into our creativity and use it to explore our connection to the natural world. Exploring the themes of peace and spirituality through the image of the dove, participants will learn to combine materials and make unique artworks.
  • Pentecost Banner Community Project – work together to create a fabric-mosaic tongues of fire banner for our Pentecost celebration

The story of Mount Zion Cemetery and Dumbarton Church is getting a new telling through the Voices of Zion, an ambitious new music-theatre production.  Our Adult Education session on Sunday, May 15, will provide backstories of Voices from two authoritative sources.  Longtime Church member Mike Beard will offer some oral history from the mid-‘70’s based on his personal involvement persuading the congregation, then in dire financial straits, not to sell the cemetery to developers but  give its title to Mt. Zion, Dumbarton’s breakaway congregation and the oldest Black Methodist church in Washington.  Susan Galbraith, artistic director of the Alliance for New Music-Theatre, will describe how new research into those interred in the cemetery -- a station on the Underground Railroad --  grew into Zion’s dramatic musical resurrection of their long-forgotten lives. There will be time for discussion and comments from people who have seen Voices of Zion performances earlier this month, and time for questions from people who may want to attend one of the last three scheduled performances.  Join us this Sunday, at ten in person at 3133 Dumbarton St. NW, or by Zoom, dialing 301-715-8592 and punching in Meeting ID: 823 2708 4830 and Passcode: 801277.

Is Jesus human?  Yes, said the early church.  And also divine.  Those attending our Adult Education session on revisited this question and Christianity's response by viewing works of art about Jesus and reading poems about those works.  Professor Gerry Hendershot share his insights from a poetry and art class he organized at American University’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.  Both the art and the poetry ask: did Jesus have a human body and human emotions, with all their limitations?  How is it important to a Christian's faith that Jesus be human?  How do we reconcile the humanity of Jesus with his divinity?  For the discussion and Professor Hendershot's thoughts, go to our YouTube channel and find our May 8 2022 session.

Dumbartonians like to think that all our Adult Educations sessions are special, but this one features a hymnic poem the church commissioned as part of its 250th Anniversary celebration.  Our guest is David Keplinger, Professor of Literature at American University and prize-winning author of seven poetry collections. On Sunday, April 10, he will talk about the piece, “Looking through your Window,” as well as poems from his most recent book, “The Long Answer."  For more on his career, prizes, and awards, click on https://www.american.edu/cas/faculty/keplinge.cfm.

As a sneak preview, here's a link to his reading and discussion of a poem, "Composition for Three Voices:”  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q_zfe70hN4E   He says a friend describes it as “what we do to survive….and how we move on from trauma…”  Odds are that this poem, which speaks presciently to the war in Ukraine, will make you want to attend this Sunday’s Adult Ed.   Join us at ten in person or by Zoom, dialing 301-715-8592 and punching in Meeting ID: 823 2708 4830 and Passcode: 801277.

On Sunday, March 6, 2022, Dumbarton United Methodist Church commemorated Abraham Lincoln’s March 8, 1863, visit to the church, where he "was moved to tears," according to the former Washington Star.  Parishioner Rob MacDougall played President Lincoln in a dramatic monologue now posted on our YouTube site here.  Lincoln came to hear his friend, Bishop Matthew Simpson, give the first sermon after the church’s decommissioning as a hospital for the wounded from Bull Run and other nearby Civil War battles.  The monologue has Lincoln recalling the abolitionist bishop’s message the following autumn, as the President was gathering his thoughts to give the Gettysburg Address.


Our Location

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3133 Dumbarton St
NW Washington, DC, 20007
Phone: (202) 333.7212

Transportation to Dumbarton


A Reconciling Congregation


All are welcome for in-person worship at Dumbarton Church each Sunday at 11:00 am. For more information about our Covid safety protocols, please click here

You can also join us on Zoom where our in-person worship will be broadcast simultaneously using: Meeting ID: 898 3876 7270 Passcode: 312148, or dial by your location 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)

 Adult Education is also held in-person and via Zoom most Sundays at 10:00 a.m.

Accessible. All are Welcome!

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What People Say About Us

--"There is a welcoming fellowship and a continuing challenge to be engaged in social justice."--Harry K.

--"I love how Dumbarton continues to stand up for the rights of the marginalized, especially LGBT people"

--"I appreciate the incredible lay participation and leadership - it is unrivaled elsewhere, in my experience."--Jamie M.

--"Everyone at Dumbarton is honestly and uniquely who they are - there are no pretensions or facades to pretend to be someone we are not." Michelle D.

--"I like the time in the service when we prayerfully express our joys and concerns."--Joan C.