Methodists belong to local
churches or ecumenical partnerships, but also feel part of a larger
connected community, the Connexion.
This sense of being connected makes a difference
to how the Methodist Church as a whole is structured. At its heart
is an understanding of the Christian community as the 'body of
Christ'. Just as a human body contains different limbs and organs
that depend on each other, so we should be close and caring enough
to feel each other's pain and delight. We should put the good of
the whole body before our own individual needs.
When ministers or deacons are ordained in the
Methodist Church, they are also 'received into full Connexion.'
The promise of mutual support is a strength of
Methodism. If you become a member of the Methodist Church, a
pastoral visitor is responsible for visiting you and offering
spiritual support, encouragement and challenge.
In the Methodist Church decisions are made as
openly as possible, giving opportunities for all to contribute. It
is important for all views to be heard and taken seriously,
especially where Christians disagree.
Included in the British Methodist Connexion
are all the districts of Scotland, Wales and England, along with
the Isle of Man, the Channel Islands and Shetland.
|'Do not allow yourself one
thought of separating from your brothers and sisters, whether their
opinions agree with yours or not.'
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