Church must celebrate and learn from diversity, says report
01 July 2015
The Methodist Fellowship Groups, congregations of Methodists
united by a shared ethnicity or language, announced their intention
to grow in deeper relationships, mutual partnerships and genuine
integration in a report to the Methodist Conference.
The report, presented by the Revd Dr Martyn Atkins, General
Secretary of the Methodist Conference, highlighted the importance
of being one family with one mission.
About the report, Martyn said, "We are committed to find
continuing and healthy ways to harvest the richness brought into
our Church by international communities of Methodists. Indeed,
every part of the life of the Church is made better because of our
life together, and there is much that we can learn from each
Following on from the report, the Conference has agreed to set
up a connexional advisory and support group to share good practice
and encourage integration with local churches.
The Revd Dr Claire Potter, deputy convener of the working group
said of the recommendations, "Fellowship groups are a growing area
of the Methodist Church in Britain. It is important that we not
only understand and welcome the variety and diversity of Fellowship
Groups, but that we deepen our current relationships, develop
mutual partnerships and genuinely integrate with each other. Let us
celebrate diversity by learning, accepting and growing together,
without enforcing assimilation."
The Revd William Davis, Fellowship Coordinator of the London
District and chaplain to the Ghanaian Fellowship Group, added:
"British Methodism for many immigrants can be quite a foreign
experience and Fellowship Groups can help provide stability and
familiarity in an otherwise strange land. There are many things we
can learn from each others' experiences of Methodism and we hope
that this new support group will help us all to develop and grow in
our faith further."