|In the early months of 1949 Rev. J. R. Turner, pastor of Woodlawn Methodist Church, and Rev. J. Foster Young, pastor of St. James Methodist Church, saw the need for a new Methodist Church in the midst of the fast developing section of the Washington Road–Lakemont Community. A suitable site was found on the corner of Washington Road and Woodbine Road, north of Lake Olmstead in the center of the Lakemont Community. This was reported to the District Superintendent who immediately called the Augusta Board of Church Extension into action. The members of the Board agreed to purchase the lot and present it to the church as soon as the church was organized.
The lot was purchased April 24, 1949 and cleared of underbrush by the county convicts.
The next step was to draw together a congregation. Plans were made for a revival which was well attended and supported by the churches of Augusta. The first sermon was preached from the back of a pickup truck near the rear of the lot. Several sermons were preached from a flatbed trailer loaned by a local car dealership. After several people beat back tall, overgrown briers on the vacant corner of Washington Road and Woodbine Road, a tent with a wagon body platform was set. The church grew from these trucks and the tent to frame buildings.
During the week’s revival, $300 was collected as the regular offering for the purpose of constructing a temporary building. A small building (20' x 40') was constructed on the back of the lot in less than a week. Sunday School was held in this building each Sunday, and visiting ministers and laymen filled the pulpit until Annual Conference in June 1949 when Rev. James A Budd was assigned as pastor to the church.
The church was designated as “The Methodist Church on Washington Road.” In August 1949 the church was organized and given the name “Saint Mark Methodist Church.”
In May 1953 construction was begun on the new building which would house the sanctuary and Sunday School. On Sunday, July 15, 1953 St. Mark’s new Sanctuary was opened. The Sanctuary was dedicated by Bishop Arthur W. Moore on July 17, 1955.
The original education building was completed in 1954 and provided 38 small classrooms, an office for the minister, a conference room, a secretary’s office and a nursery. About 1986, it became apparent that the original design no longer met the needs of the church. Work began in 1988 that essentially gutted and rebuilt the old building.
Construction began in April of 1998 on a Family Life Center. The design for the new building included a Fellowship Hall capable of seating 300 people, a gymnasium, a completely outfitted kitchen, a stage, eight classrooms, and an elevator. Construction was completed in May 1999. After initial construction began, donations began to come in for other items not in the original plans. Additional funds were received that provided a passage way between the two buildings, memorial gardens, gym equipment, and other furnishings.
In 2013 plans were drawn to update the sanctuary and a three-year Capital Funds Campaign began in January 2014. Construction included renovating the Chancel and Choir Loft areas, removing the carpet, refinishing the original hardwood floor, and installing new pews, a new organ and a new piano. In addition, a new sound system and video equipment were installed. Upgrades to the narthex area and hallway were also made. As pledges to the Capital Funds Campaign and other generous gifts were received, the five-year loan was paid in full by November of 2016.
Saint Mark Methodist Church became known as “St. Mark United Methodist Church” due to the merger of The Methodist Church and The Evangelical Brethren in 1968.