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About us


The Cortland United Church was born on September 13, 1982, with the signing of the Articles of Incorporation merging the Pilgrim Congregational Church, established 1875, and the Epworth Methodist Church, established 1875.  Worship services alternated by month between the "North Building" (Epworth, 1918) and the "South Building" (Pilgrim, 1919) until structural problems at the North Building forced its closing.  At that time, the stained glass altar window (North) was combined with the wood cross (South) as the altarpiece of the one church. 


Pastoral leadership has been provided by Richard F. Banzhaf (1978 - 1983), Walter L. Jewett (1983 - 1984), David N. Patterson (1984 - 1987), Carl F. Kemper (1987 - 1988), C. Howell Bischoff (1988 - 1993), Timothy A. Travers (1993 - 1994), Kathy Rahorst (1994 - 2002), Gil Karges (2002 - 2007), and Casey Karges (2007 to present).


Pastor Casey Karges

Rev. Casey Karges joined Cortland United Church as Pastor in September 2007.  Casey holds a Bachelors of Arts Degree from UNL and a Masters of Divinity Degree from St. Paul’s School of Theology. Casey has been an ordained pastor for over 30 years.

He is the Executive Director of the Mediation Center in Lincoln.  In addition, he has served as the Director of Connectional Ministries for the United Methodist Church Nebraska Conference, the Director of Congregational Development at Waverly United Methodist Church, pastor at Trinity United Methodist in Lincoln, Gretna United Methodist Church and Falls City and Rulo United Methodist Churches. Casey is a Leadership Lincoln graduate, and past president of Lincoln Urban Ministries, Day Watch Inc., and the Lincoln District of the United Methodist Church.   ​

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