Tuesday, August 19, 2008

General Assembly Resolution: Merger Exploration

NAZARENE/WESLEYAN (FREE METHODIST) MERGER EXPLORATION

WHEREAS:


1. The Church of the Nazarene and The Wesleyan Church (along with the Free Methodist Church) share common historical roots.


2. The Church of the Nazarene and The Wesleyan Church (along with the Free Methodist Church) share a common theological heritage.


3. The Church of the Nazarene and The Wesleyan Church (along with the Free Methodist Church) are firmly committed to the spread of the message of holiness as understood in the Wesleyan-holiness tradition.


4. The Church of the Nazarene and The Wesleyan Church (along with the Free Methodist Church) share similar governmental structures rooted in a common heritage.


5. The Church of the Nazarene and The Wesleyan Church (along with the Free Methodist Church) have a long history of partnering together in ministry.


6. Jesus Christ our Lord, Himself, prayed in John 17 for the unity of His Church.


7. There seem to be little justification in maintaining the separate organizational existence of such similar denominations when compared to the expressed will of our Lord found in John 17.


8. The message of holiness of heart and life is diminished by the smallness of size of our individual denominations.


9. The message of perfect love which our holiness churches proclaim is called into question when so many (relatively small) holiness denominations cannot find a way to unite as one.


10. The message of holiness would gain a greater voice within the larger Wesleyan/Methodist tradition by a united Wesleyan-holiness denomination.


11. The message of holiness would gain a greater voice in the larger Church by a united Wesleyan-holiness denomination.


THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED:


That the Board of General Superintendents be given authority and responsibility to commission a committee for the expressed purpose of approaching The Wesleyan Church in order to pursue closer relations between the two denominations with a goal of exploring the possibility of merger of the two denominations into one, united Wesleyan-holiness denomination.


BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED:


That upon the agreement of The Wesleyan Church, the Free Methodist Church should also be approached and invited to participate in such an exploration.


BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED:


That the committee presents the results of its exploration and its recommendations to the next meeting of the General Assembly.

7 comments:

Pastor Steven said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pastor Steven said...

Todd,

I can say yes and amen to all the resolutions you have posted here. These should be important to all those in the CotN who have a Wesleyan/Anglican view of the Church and the Sacraments.

Peace in Christ,

Steven

Pastor Joseph M. Gleason said...

Todd,

I agree 100% with what you are proposing here! Christ's prayer in John 17 should be the controlling factor. I would love to see the Nazarenes and Wesleyans and Free Methodists get together . . . not unlike the way that multiple holiness groups merged to form the Nazarene church 100 years ago! Then perhaps someday even my church (the Anglican church) will get its act together, and then the Anglican church and the unified Wesleyan-holiness church can merge together. Then John Wesley's dream would be a little closer to coming true . . . he never wanted to create new denominations . . . he just wanted to reform the Anglican faith.

Todd, I attend the Anglican church in Evansville on Sunday mornings, and I am pastoring a new Anglican church-plant an hour west of Evansville, in Omaha, Illinois. Please send me your email address. Mine is: biblelighthouse @ gmail.com

May you, your family, and your ministry be blessed!

Daniel Coutz said...

Praise God! I pray that this will happen.

Daniel McLain Hixon said...

Hey Todd,
I'm glad to have run across your blog. I also hope for greater unity among Wesleyan/Methodist (and indeed Anglican) denominations, since there seems very little reason - especially in the face of a sometimes hostile secular world - for continued seperation other than "we like it that way."
I hope you guys can do it soon!

J.B.Chapman said...

I have sent this one to the Minnesota Distirct.

Anonymous said...

As a member (and youth minister) in the United Methodist Church, I pray for your union, and hope that it is another step toward Wesleyan unity, and more importantly, Christian Unity. "In essentials unity, in non-essentials liberty, and in all things charity.” God Bless.