About us

We are committed to enhancing the physical and spiritual lives of individuals and families by bringing together churches and neighbors to provide child care, spiritual development, social services and education through Christian love.

A partnership of churches and, neighbors: serving one another in Christian love.

United Methodist Neighborhood Centers of Memphis, Inc. (UMNC) is a private, non-profit corporation that has been providing a variety of services in the city since 1907.  A growing need for child care in the mid-town/medical center area led United Methodist Neighborhood Centers under the leadership of Rev. Mark Matheny to open Miriam Infant and Toddler Center in 1982 in cooperation with Madison Heights United Methodist Church and Mrs. Ruth Fuimer.

“Grandpa Mark”, along with former Site Director, Donna Eddins, began the program with twenty-six children, a few care givers and willing volunteers. Located in two rooms at Madison heights UMC, Miriam Center opened in April of 1982. By October, the enrollment had grown large enough to move part of the program to 17 S. Claybrook.  Later both sites were combined in the Claybrook Building. In 1993, Miriam Center was moved to the current site at 3000 Walnut Grove.

“Quality care for the very young” has been our motto from the onset. Miriam Center’s good reputation is based on an open-door policy for parents and a warm and caring atmosphere. Visitors to the center are met by a dedicated loving staff and happy smiling children. We feel this is only the beginning.

What’s in our name? In the ancient story of Moses, it is his sister, Miriam watched as the Pharaoh’s daughter discovered the infant Moses among the reeds at the edge of the river and decided to adopt him. Miriam then suggested that the princess take on a nurse for the child, and suggested Jochebed, Miriam’s and Moses’ own mother; as a result, Moses was raised to be familiar with his background as a Hebrew and yet understand the Pharaoh’s culture.. (see: Exodus 2:1-10)  In this same way, the “Miriam’s” of our dedicated staff will care for your children.

For More Miriam News

Exodus 2:1-10

New International Version (NIV)

The Birth of Moses

2 Now a man of the tribe of Levi married a Levite woman, 2 and she became pregnant and gave birth to a son. When she saw that he was a fine child, she hid him for three months. 3 But when she could hide him no longer, she got a papyrus basket[a] for him and coated it with tar and pitch. Then she placed the child in it and put it among the reedsalong the bank of the Nile. 4 His sister stood at a distance to see what would happen to him.

5 Then Pharaoh’s daughter went down to the Nile to bathe, and her attendants were walking along the riverbank. She saw the basket among the reeds and sent her female slave to get it. 6 She opened it and saw the baby. He was crying, and she felt sorry for him. “This is one of the Hebrew babies,” she said.

7 Then his sister asked Pharaoh’s daughter, “Shall I go and get one of the Hebrew women to nurse the baby for you?”

8 “Yes, go,” she answered. So the girl went and got the baby’s mother. 9 Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this baby and nurse him for me, and I will pay you.” So the woman took the baby and nursed him. 10 When the child grew older, she took him to Pharaoh’s daughter and he became her son. She named him Moses,[b] saying, “I drew him out of the water.”


  1. Exodus 2:3 The Hebrew can also mean ark, as in Gen. 6:14.
  2. Exodus 2:10 Moses sounds like the Hebrew for draw out.

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