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How do I find a Methodist Church Near Me?

I’m sure the question has been on your mind. With the rise of churches nationwide, it can be a tough task to find the right church for you. So, you’re not alone if you’ve found yourself asking, “How do I find a Methodist church near me?” I found that there was an easier way to find the right Methodist church near me than simply searching on Google. This article will help you decide whether the Methodist church is right for you and where you can find the one to suit your needs. 

What is Methodism and How Did it Become a Church Near Me?

The Methodism movement was formed following the teachings of Reformer John Wesley in the 18th Century. The purpose was originally to reform and rebuild the Church of England however, the popularity of the movement pulled it in another direction, splitting from the Church of England and becoming its own independent church. Today, the World Methodist Council contains members in excess of 40 million spanning just under 140 countries.  

The Life of John Wesley

Born in London in the early 18th Century and educated at Oxford, John Wesley became an official minister for the Church of England in 1725. The first taste of Methodism was initiated by a group Both Wesley and his brother Charles were a part of in Oxford who devoted their time to participating in the Eucharist frequently, intensely studying Scripture, and consistent outreach to those in the dilapidated Oxford prisons. Because of their methodical habits and practices, the group became known at the Methodists. Wesley alongside his brother embarked on a journey to Georgia by invitation of the colony’s founder to serve as pastors to the English settlers and missionaries. Unfortunately for the Wesleys, this experience was a negative one and they returned to Great Britain disenfranchised and disappointed by their hollow faith. The search for genuine faith saw Wesley move to Moravian colonies in America. It was hear that Wesley would have a warm encounter with Jesus, experiencing a solidification of his faith in the salvific acts of Christ. He was convicted personally and intimately that Jesus had forgiven his sins, however dark and perverse, and that he was rescued from the jaws of death. 

Whitefield and Wesley

Wesley’s connection to an Anglican preacher by the name of George Whitefield led him to accept an invitation to preach in Kingswood Chase a few months on. It was here, preaching openly in the street that the Methodist Revival began to take shape. Although brought together by a shared conversion experience, Whitefield and Wesley would later distinguish themselves from one another due to Whitefield’s views on predestination. The Methodist movement largely appealed to those who had been disenfranchised by the Church of England. The appeal came from Wesley’s emphasis on the assurance one has of their salvation and of the Holy Spirit’s empowerment to live sanctified and holy. Wesley’s original intentions were for the Methodist Revival to reform the Church of England in a harmonious way from within the structure of the church itself, however, tensions continued to bubble and eventually, a separation of the two entities was necessitated.  

Establishing a Governing Structure

Before his death in 1791, Wesley ordained ministers to operate in America following a shortage of clergymen after the Revolution. He also established a group of 100 people and entrusted them with advancing and maintaining the Society of Methodists following his eventual death. It was only four years after Wesley’s time on Earth ended that his desire to stay within the walls of the Church of England was demolished and Methodism moved out. For better or for worse, the Methodist movement experienced a swift increase in numbers following the split. This dynamic change resulted in the creation of the Annual Conference tasked with governing the affairs of the wider Methodist movement. From this, the country was sectioned out into regions and then into circuits consisting of collections of congregations. A superintendent was placed in charge of the individual circuits, sharing authority with the local congregational leaders. 

So How do I actually find a Methodist church near me?

Now we finally answer the question, “How can I find a Methodist church near me?” Whether you’ve arrived here with a recommendation or have no idea how to start searching, this website will help you find a Methodist church in your area, as it did for me. It was near impossible to find all the church listings around where I lived but now, you can simply put in your zip code and come up with a comprehensive list of all the Methodist churches near you. For me, this was the quickest and easiest way to find a Methodist church near me.