Skip to comments.United Methodist Church Membership Passes 12.5 Million Worldwide; Continues to Shrink in US
Posted on 02/01/2018 9:39:41 AM PST by SeekAndFind
The United Methodist Church is growing globally while declining in the United States, passing the 12.5 million-member mark, according to recently released statistics.
Drawing from annual conference journals sent to the UMC General Council on Finance and Administration mostly from 2016, the UMC saw its numbers grow compared to five years earlier.
The statistics were used to determine the number of delegates each annual conference will send to the 2020 UMC General Conference.
Delegates for the denomination's 2020 legislative gathering will represent a diverse national background, according to the United Methodist News Service.
"The 2020 General Conference in Minneapolis will have 862 delegates half clergy and half lay. Of those delegates, 55.9 percent will be from the U.S., 32 percent from Africa, 6 percent from the Philippines, 4.6 percent from Europe and the remainder from Concordat churches," reported UMNS.
The largest single delegation, according to UMNS, will come from the North Katanga Conference in the Democratic Republic of Congo, with 50 people being sent.
The African presence in the UMC has become increasingly notable over the past several years. At the 2016 General Conference, delegates voted for the creation of five new bishops for the continent in response to the rapid growth.
The African influence on the UMC has also been credited with preventing liberal UMC delegates from enacting legislation changing the denomination's views on homosexuality and gay marriage.
For example, at a September 2015 meeting, a group of African bishops signed a statement demanding that the UMC maintain its official position affirming homosexual behavior as sinful.
"We are deeply saddened that the Holy Bible, our primary authority for faith and the practice of Christian living, and our Book of Discipline are being grossly ignored by some members and leaders of our Church in favor of social and cultural practices that have no scriptural basis for acceptance in Christian worship and conduct," read the statement.
"The Christian marriage covenant is holy, sacred, and consecrated by God and is expressed in shared fidelity between one man and one woman for life. In this vein, we denounce all forms of sexual exploitation, including fornication, adultery, sexual commercialization, slavery, abuse, polygamy, etc."
U.S. membership has, meanwhile, continued declining. In 2016, the church body reported 7 million members in the U.S., dropping about 1.6 percent from 2015.
You got to take these numbers of “members” of the far left liberal denominations (UMC, PCUSA, ECA, ULCA) with a big grain of salt. The gulf between the claimed “members” and the about of people in their pews on Sunday is enormous. The PCUSA supposedly has a membership that dwarfs the conservative Presbyterian Church of America (PCA) but the PCA has more people attending Church every Sunday.
I wonder whether the decline in Methodist membership (along with Presbyterians and Episcopalians) is due more to their embrace of liberal theology or because church membership in the US is declining as a whole?
Methodist Church? You mean Wesleyan Social Justice Network?
For years, our local Methodist church had a lesbian pastor.
Our pastor attended “The Woman’s March (Anti Trump Riot) last month. This may have something to do with it. I know it does for me!!
As long as they can’t find Biblical reasons to condemn abortions and homosexuality, then I’ll not go back for a minute. They’re so concerned about gambling, but not the disgusting slaughter of innocent human beings.
Left it nearly 20 years ago for the more conservative Free Methodist denomination.
How many years?
Extract from UMC “Our call to end gun violence”:
8. For United Methodist congregations to advocate at the local and national level for laws that prevent or reduce gun violence. Some of those measures include:
Universal background checks on all gun purchases
Ratification of the Arms Trade Treaty
Ensuring all guns are sold through licensed gun retailers
Prohibiting all individuals convicted of violent crimes from purchasing a gun for a fixed time period
Prohibiting all individuals under restraining order due to threat of violence from purchasing a gun
Prohibiting persons with serious mental illness, who pose a danger to themselves and their communities, from purchasing a gun
Ensuring greater access to services for those suffering from mental illness
Establishing a minimum age of 21 years for a gun purchase or possession
Banning large-capacity ammunition magazines and weapons designed to fire multiple rounds each time the trigger is pulled
Promoting new technologies to aid law-enforcement agencies to trace crime guns and promote public safety.
Our African brothers are amazing men of God! Attending a WCA conference in Houston in the fall, several of them had a part and their testimony was very powerful. Like Jesus said, we must receive His word as children would and each pastor gave his message by raising The Bible throughout as he gave or read the Word of God!!
Our fight in our church as well as this world is not on earth but in the heavenlies. So, fellow Christians, we must fight the good fight and not sit at home but fill the pews in churches that preach and teach God’s Word without tearing out verses man doesn’t like today!! Biblically correct, not politically correct! We CAN WIN against Satan’s entering our church’s government by having our own ‘memo’!!!
Praise God from whom ALL blessings FLOW!!!
Very true and most of these so-called denominations only care about the size of your bank account and how they can get a hold of it.
"All cultures are equal!"
The conservative groups within the church have fought the liberal hierarchy for years over their views and the way money from the local churches was spent.
The outcome is going to be interesting.
There were two Methodist churches near my home when I moved here 20 years ago. Both have since taken Methodist out of their name and adopted more non-denominational names like “The Fount”. I wonder if their congregations are still counted as Methodist.
Social Justice Network, yes. Wesleyan, no. John and Charles are spinning in their graves.
UMC / former UMC ping!
At least 8. My boss attended the church. I visited it once with him. The pews had cards welcoming visitors, saying "We're not here to convert you, but to welcome you to our community."
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