Who are the people of the United Methodist Church?
The United Methodist Church is a worldwide connection of more than 12 million members in Africa, Asia, Europe and the United States. We are the person next door, the church on the other side of the country, and the worshiping community across the globe. Together, we share a legacy of living as disciples of Jesus Christ, sharing God's love both in what we say and how we serve our neighbors.
The United Methodist Church is a member of the World Methodist Council — which ties together Methodist denominations worldwide.
What do United Methodists believe?
The United Methodist Church shares a great deal with other Christian denominations. We believe God's grace is open to all, and therefore practice "open Communion"--meaning that anyone may participate in receiving Communion. We believe salvation is an open gift from God, accepted by individuals according to their own free will. The United Methodist denomination is a "big tent" theologically, providing space for theological discourse and, at times, disagreement.
Like many other Christian groups, we affirm the beliefs expressed in the Apostles Creed. These include:
The belief in one God, who is the Creator and sustainer of the universe.
The belief in the Trinity, that there is one God in three persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
The belief in the divinity of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who is fully human and fully divine.
What do United Methodists do?
John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist movement, taught that we pursue our faith in community and action with others. We practice a social holiness. We insist that personal salvation always involves Christian mission and service to the world. The United Methodist Church has a long history of action and advocacy for social justice.
United Methodists are active in their communities and in the world through a variety of ways, including:
Participating in local mission projects and service initiatives
Supporting global mission efforts through the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) and other mission organizations
Advocating for social justice and working to address issues such as poverty, hunger, and inequality
Providing educational and vocational training opportunities
Offering counseling, support groups, and other forms of pastoral care
Creating and supporting community development programs