signing the mortgage documents in 1999, when BRUU purchased the building from Grave United Methodist Church


BRUU has met in multiple locations since the congregation was organized in 1981, including:

– renting a room from Seton Catholic Church, until being evicted after someone noticed that the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) was pro-choice
– using a residence owned by a BRUU member next to Manassas National Battlefield Park
– renting space at Muriel Humphrey Center in Dale City
– renting space at Parkside Middle School in Manassas
– using the Primitive Baptist Church in Manassas for Sunday Services, while renting an old frame house on Grant Avenue for Religious Education (RE) classes (which required crossing the parking lot next to Blake Funeral Home’s mortuary when going back and forth)

BRUU purchased land in the 1990’s, but never had funding to build.  BRUU’s first building, on Church and Main streets in downtown Manassas, was acquired in 1999.

That historic Victoria Gothic structure was designed for the Grace Methodist Church by Albert Speiden, who also designed many other structures in Manassas – including Old Town Hall, the Hopkins Candy Factory, the Hibbs and Giddings Store, and Trinity Episcopal Church near BRUU on Church Street.

The Methodists moved into the building in 1929.  From the beginning, the stairs were described as “Mr. Speiden’s Nightmare.”

The 100-seat balcony was added in 1954-55.  The education wing was built in 1957.  In 1963, the building was crowded (with nearly 1,000 members), and the congregation bought 7 acres on Weems Road in preparation for a possible move.

In 1977, the building was remodeled.  In 1981, a major fire caused $250,000 in damage (covered by insurance).  Another fire in 1996 damaged several classrooms in the education wing, causing an equivalnt amount of damage.

In 1988, the last farm in Manassas was sold to become the Wellington development.  The farmer gave 8 acres to Grace United Methodist Church (“united” was added after the United Brethren Church combined with the Methodist Church in 1968).  Grace built a new facility and relocated in 1994, taking the cornerstone and the Good Shepherd stained glass window from the Main Street side of the Sanctuary.

Grace then rented its old downtown Manassas building to a small congregation, the Redemption Christian Church.  Another fire in 1996 caused $230,000 in damages (also covered by insurance).

In 1999, BRUU purchased the building from Grace United Methodist Church.  For more, see Building History.

For earlier history of the building, see:
Excerpts from “By Grace We Are Saved”- The History and People of Grace United Methodist Church, Manassas, Virginia 1867-1997
Architectural Review Board – Evaluation of 9350 Main Street Grace Methodist Church, Historic Landmark Designation (April 11, 2023)
Nomination form of Manassas Historic District to National Register of Historic Places
– City of Manassas Historic Overlay District