The United Methodist Church has been fractured by progressive bishops and church leaders who have rejected the clear teachings of Scripture about human sexuality and have ignored the UMC’s clear positions stated in the Book of Discipline.
Many United Methodist churches, which are committed to the truth and authority of Scripture, are choosing to disaffiliate from their denomination. At WBS, we encourage and support UMC churches that are choosing to disaffiliate in order to remain faithful to Scripture.
We hope this resource page will be helpful to pastors and lay people who want to lead their churches to remain faithful to Jesus and His Word.
For decades, the United Methodist Church has been trending towards progressive theology that rejects the authority of Scripture, orthodox theology, and biblical sexual ethics. Although the Book of Discipline still affirms key biblical positions, many UMC conferences and leaders, along with most of the bishops, have ignored the Book of Discipline and rejected Scriptural teachings.
Churches are faced with the decision to remain in a denomination that rejects biblical truth or to disaffiliate and find another ecclesial family. Churches that don’t disaffiliate soon will be trapped in a denomination that denies the truth and authority of Scripture and embraces unbiblical teachings.
Paragraph 2553 in the Book of Discipline outlines the process for disaffiliation, although the details vary significantly by conference. Par. 2553 contains the following important information.
Once a church has disaffiliated, they will retain their church property.
A local church must notify its disctrict superintendent of an intent to explore disaffiliation. In many conferences, this request comes through the local church’s admin board.
Although your conference may be different, here is one conference’s process:
The Wesleyan Covenant Association has representatives in every conference who are available to help local churches navigate the disaffiliation process. You can find contact information for each WCA representative at this link.
Once a church disaffiliates, it is an independent entity. Churches have chosen to take different approaches to find a new ecclesial family. The majority of disaffiliating churches will join the Global Methodist Church, a new evangelical expression of Methodism. Other churches have chosen to join Wesleyan-Methodist denominations like the Independent Methodist Church and the Congregational Methodist Church.
It is important for churches to disaffiliate by the deadline, even if they haven’t decided what group or denomination to join next. That decision can take place in the future with an appropriate period of discernment.