We had an oecumencal forum recently, with clergy of a number of denominations and religions speaking.
I was interested that the lady minister of a United Methodist Church explained their beliefs. It sounded almost like a Unitarian minister’s description of his group’s beliefs.
A statement that the founder of the Methodist church was actually a secretly ordained Greek Orthodox bishop came as a surprise to my very good friend, a Methodist for almost 80 years.
Any Methodists out there who could comment on either of these “revelations”?


The founder of the Methodist Church was an Anglican Priest named John Wesley NOT a “Secret Orthodox Bishop”:confused:
In my area there are two groups of Methodists, both are descended from the original Methodist Episcopal Church. The largest is the United Methodist Church which is very liberal, they ordain women as bishops and ministers and are a Pro-Abortion church. The other and the one which I attend is the First Congregational Methodist Church which is a conservative church, very Pro-Life, only males can be clergy and anyone who professes to be homosexual will be excommunicated from the church. We seperated from the ME Church in 1852 and adoped a Congregational form of church government.
Hope that helped some.


a couple links
FCM Church
United Methodist Church


A note on this comment…the United Methodist Church was derived from a joining of the ME Church and the Evangelical Bretheren Church. Yes, they do ordain women as bishops and ministers, and are liberal in some aspects, but are most definitely NOT Pro-Abortion, at least as a whole. My father is a UMC pastor and both his churches in the charge as well as the Memphis Conference, which is where those churches belong are very Pro-Life. I think that is going to depend on where the UMC you are talking about happens to be. Just wanted to clear those things up and hope I didn’t offend anyone.


My mother in law was raised Methodist. They started in England by John Wesley. I believe they are strongly based in SW England, because when I visited there, there were large Methodist Churches everywhere. I visited the Methodist Hall in London, across from Westminster Abbey, and we received a personal tour of it by a very nice old gentleman who explained Methodism to us. He told us that John Wesley “preached in the open air” and that they like their Churches to be airy and open.

Methodism was the answer to the Anglican church which was utterly connected and tainted by the British Crown, and very ornate and ceremonial. The Methodists were preaching more simplicity, and good works. I believe it was called Methodist because it was a methodical approach, based on good works.


From Wikipedia:

Some Methodists even make an appeal to the “Legend of Erasmus,” which asserts that, while on a visit to London in 1763, the Greek Orthodox bishop of the Diocese of Arcadia, Crete, secretly consecrated Wesley to the episcopacy. That Wesley actually met with Bishop Erasmus during the bishop’s visit to London is not questioned; what is questioned is that Erasmus did more than simply “confirm Wesley in his ministry among the methodists in England and America.” When Wesley was asked if Erasmus had made him a bishop, he offered no personal response but, rather, took the unusual course of authorizing a representative to reply that he had not requested episcopal consecration within the Greek Orthodox line. Many take this as a sufficient denial, and it was enough to keep Wesley out of jail, but those who believe that Wesley was actually consecrated make the following arguments to the contrary: (1) Wesley personally remained silent on the subject, (2) Wesley took the unusual step of having someone to speak on his behalf, and (3) Wesley never actually denied being consecrated a bishop, what he denied was requesting consecration from Erasmus. This distinction may seem meaningless to us today, but it is actually quite substantive given the circumstances of the 1700s. Were Wesley actually consecrated a bishop by Erasmus, he would not have been able to publicly affirm such without falling prey to the stipulations of the English Acts of Supremacy (1534 & 1559). To keep from being charged with treason, and to keep his head, it is argued that Wesley skirted the question altogether by offering a “non-denial denial.” Given the circumstances, the argument actually makes some sense: Wesley was asked if he had been made a bishop by Erasmus; his response was that he had not requested consecration … which actually doesn’t answer the original question! After all, episcopal consecration could have been Erasmus’ idea, not Wesley’s. If Wesley had affirmed that he had been made a bishop, or even if he had just confessed that he had requested consecration, he would have been placing himself in jeopardy of treason against the crown!


Ecumenism is good if and only if it is done with an evangelical mind to bring schismatics, heretics and unbelievers back to the Catholic Church. I noticed that there are many ecumenical bodies, some of them are really serious about dialogue, while others have hidden political agenda. One such black sheep is the World Council of Churches which hardly represents World Christians at all. This body opposes prosetylising non Christians on grounds all religions are true and it further has called evangelism a form of imperialism and colonism!

The United Methodist Church and most of the so-called “mainline” Protestant churches associated with the World Council of Churches (WCC) and National Council of Churches (NCC) are Arian in theology as many of their Bishops and Priests do not believe in Trinity with their hearts but just confess it with their lips. Wolves in sheep’s clothing?

Its an open secret that WCC associated Protestants (such as United Methodists, Anglikans, etc) are associated with the Greek Orthodox religion. The WCC secretly advocates Marxism and was an ardent supporter of the Soviet Union. During the 1991 Yugoslav war, the World Council of Churches endorsed the Orthodox Serb pogrom on innocent Catholics (Croats, Bosniaks and Albanians), mostly unarmed men, women and children.


While some individual churches may be Pro-Life the United Methodist Church itself (the leadership) was a founding member of Churches For Choice which is a Pro-Abortion group. Honestly this reason and the ordaining of women are the only reason I attend the FCM rather than the UMC.


This is simply nonsense. You can’t read these people’s hearts, so your claim is blatantly uncharitable and unjust. All you can judge is what Methodists say, and Methodists as a whole unequivocally believe in the Trinity.

As in any church, you have Methodists who don’t believe the official teachings of the denomination. But there are such official teachings and they are easy to find. Methodists are not known (in the past century or so) for rigorous church discipline, so there’s a lot of laxity in how these standards are enforced. But they do exist and they are enforced at least sometimes!



The current UMC position is that abortion may be justifiable in cases of “tragic conflicts of life with life.” No other possible justification is mentioned.



False. I’ll tell you for a fact that the United Methodists, as well as most other mainline Protestant Churches, do indeed believe in the Trinity. You must be thinking of the Unitarians.


I’m not a Methodist. I’m a Catholic, but I have Methodist friends and know a bit about church history. The Methodist Church was founded by John Wesley (and his brother Charles). A fellow named George Whitefield also was involved. John Wesley was an ordained Anglican priest, not Greek Orthodox. Wesley was not Greek in nationality either. He was from England. Check out this link to find out more about Wesley.


I attended a United Methodist service, and they most certainly believe in the Trinity! They recited the Apostles’ Creed. :thumbsup:


Sounds like a question for Zooey, our friendly neighbourhood methodist …


From Wikipedia:
I myself attend a First Congregational Methodist Church rather than a UMC.

In addition to the United Methodist Church, there are over 40 other denominations that descend from John Wesley’s Methodist movement. Some, such as the African Methodist Episcopal Church, the Free Methodists, the Wesleyan Church (formerly Wesleyan Methodist), the Congregational Methodist Church and First Congregational Methodist Church are explicitly Methodist. Others do not call themselves Methodist, but are related to varying degrees. The Salvation Army was founded by William Booth, a former Methodist. It derives some of its theology from Methodism. Another related denomination is the Church of the Nazarene. Some of the charismatic or pentecostal churches such as the Pentecostal Holiness Church and the Assemblies of God also have roots in or draw from Wesleyan thought.


You could be right.
I spoke with a United Methodist minister today and he stated that he personally and the church were pro-life.
I believe that I will attend the local United Methodist Church this coming sunday in order to take communion and say the creeds of old.


I also attended a Methodist baptism (they baptize infants, just like the Catholic Church). They have the godparents answer "Do you reject Satan, Do you believe in God, etc. just like the Catholic Church does. I think the OP probably attended a Unitarian or Universalist service and somehow thought that it was Methodist by mistake. :nope: I have a good friend who is Methodist (I’vc known him for about 15 years) and I am also friends with a Methodist pastor who is married to a practicing Catholic, and neither of these friends has ever said anything that was non-Christian (i.e. denial of the Trinity). In fact, every Methodist service that I have attended (in addition to, not in replacement of, Sunday Mass) has always included the Apostles’ Creed! So Methodists definitely do believe in the Trinity! :clapping:


I used to worship in a methodist chapel [after attending mass] and I can say that the Weslyians were anything but liberal.

They knew how to worship, preach and sing. It was there that I rediscovered my voice [which I use when singing at mass] but I take my hat off to them. I remember them with great affection

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