An amazing development in world Christianity is the formation of the Global Methodist Church. Indeed, this story is one of the most important stories of global and American Christianity in many years.
In the United States alone, there are thousands of Global Methodist churches in all 50 states. But, as the name indicates, it is truly a global movement. Churches in Africa, Europe, Eurasia, and the Philippines have joined this new denomination.
Most of the churches are former United Methodist congregations. These churches desired to affiliate with a new denomination that held to biblical and ethical orthodoxy. Attempts to work within the current United Methodist framework did not prove fruitful. Thus, a new denomination was formed on May 1, 2022.
This new denomination could potentially become one of the largest church groups in America and the world as more churches join Global Methodists. It is something we are watching closely at Church Answers.
My team and I have worked with a number of Global Methodist churches thus far. Based on our involvement with these congregations, we are encouraged. Yet we know that the Global Methodist Church will have challenges and moments of discouragements. Such is the nature of any new movement of this magnitude.
Though I am but a person on the sidelines watching this denomination form, I am vitally interested in it for the sake of the Kingdom. In that light, I offer these few prayers for your present and future. These things I pray:
- I pray that you will look forward and not backwards. It is tempting, I am sure, to focus on the reasons you left another denomination instead of focusing on God’s future. I am encouraged to hear from many Global Methodist pastors and leaders who have a clear and exciting vision for your future. May that be your posture and trajectory.
- I pray that your denomination, churches, and members will rekindle the fire of evangelism. I love that a key part of your mission is to “witness boldly.” Methodism, from a human perspective, was born through the work of John Wesley. His passion for proclaiming the gospel was clear and convicting. I love that you affirm your gospel witness must be “bold, compelling and fearless.”
- I pray that each church and every member will see the Global Methodist Church as a God-given opportunity to attempt new and great things for His glory. In that light, I pray that the thousands of churches and her leaders will fight the temptation to be a 2.0 version of your past. It is a great opportunity to test and explore the new wineskins God has given you.
- I pray that you will do the work of the Kingdom in unity. You have made many decisions as a denomination thus far. You have many yet to make. In a movement the magnitude of Global Methodists, you will not always agree. Not everyone can have their own choices. I pray that you will keep focused on the main issues and remain in unity as the world looks on.
- I pray that you will have courage. You have demonstrated courage thus far, but the challenges have just begun. Remind your churches and church members of the words of God to the people of Israel as they awaited to enter a new and largely unknown land: “This is my command – be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9, NLT).
I know that many Christians around the world are praying for you Global Methodists. Count me among them. I often turn to the words of John Wesley himself for inspiration. One of my favorite quotes by Wesley is one of his shortest: “You have one business on earth – to save souls.”
I can’t wait to see the Global Methodist Church carry out the business of God on earth.
These things I do indeed pray.
Posted on January 29, 2024
With nearly 40 years of ministry experience, Thom Rainer has spent a lifetime committed to the growth and health of local churches across North America.
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