The Hampton Lane Child Development Center is a non-profit organization and outreach ministry of the Towson United Methodist Church. Established in 1978, the Center has been providing families in the community with quality care and services for over four decades. Towson United Methodist Church is a large United Methodist church located in the historic Hampton subdivision of Towson, a suburb of Baltimore County, Maryland. Its history is deeply intertwined with the nation's political and sociological trends, beginning with its divided congregation in 1861, on the eve of the American Civil War.
The church was built in the post-World War II era of the 1950s, a time of reconciliation and rapid growth of major Protestant denominations, especially in the more prosperous suburbs. The chairman of the church's construction committee had advanced his personal funds to complete the construction and was subsequently involved in years of litigation with the church. Located in the heart of Towson, near the County Circuit Courthouse, the Towson Methodist Protestant Church was built in stone with a slate roof and a bell tower. When the Maine church celebrated its twenty-fifth anniversary in 1896, it began with a prayer and a piano concert, with a beautiful selection sung by Mrs. Hunt's Memorial United Methodist Church, which is located in Riderwood, just west of Towson, at the intersection of West Joppa and Old Court Roads. In 1839, the citizens of sparsely populated Towsontown, as the town was then called, built the small community's first church on a wooded site north of Joppa Road and east of Dulaney Valley Road.
The Towson United Methodist Church has a 3-manual, 48-range 2,790-tube Casavant pipe organ, including seven 16-foot rows. In the 1960s and 1980s, the church's Alleluia Singers, a group of school-age youth, sang frequently at weekly worship services and toured the eastern United States every summer. While the two Methodist congregations had stayed apart since the split in 1861, both groups came together in 1895 to celebrate a great revival in Towson. However, the eighty-seven members of the United Methodist Church soon ran into financial difficulties as they borrowed heavily to build their new sanctuary. In the lobby of the current building there is an illuminated screen of stained glass windows from their old church.
Douglas Cooney (1928-2000) was a Methodist minister in several churches including First Methodist Church in Hyattsville, Maryland and an official of the Methodist denomination. He was Towson's Methodist pastor from 1995 to 2001 when he went to England to preach at American Church in London and appeared as a frequent commentator for BBC. The current name Towson United Methodist Church was adopted in 1968 to reflect merger that year of United Brethren Methodist and Evangelical denominations in United States. He was ordained to ministry by United Methodist Church in 1995 after studying at Iliff School of Theology in Denver Colorado where he obtained Master of Divinity and Doctorate in Ministry. These Sundays children in grades 3 through 5 are invited to worship with their parents at sanctuary.