The process by which the authority of a clergy person to exercise the rights and privileges of a minister throughout the denomination is withdrawn. A located minister retains the right to exercise ministerial rights only within the charge conference in which his or her membership is held. The word location has a particular meaning in the context of Methodism in the United States. Historically, when a person was judged by the Annual Conference to have the "gifts and graces" to serve effectively as a minister throughout the denomination, that person became a "traveling elder." A traveling elder was one who was considered qualified to serve wherever appointed and thus to become a part of the itinerant or traveling ministry. When a minister was no longer able or willing or judged competent to travel throughout the church, the privilege of traveling was withdrawn and the minister was "located," that is, limited to only one place. The use of the word location in the denomination today is based upon this historical usage.
Source: A Dictionary for United Methodists, Alan K. Waltz, Copyright 1991, Abingdon Press. Used by Permission.