ministers return re-energised, refreshed and their calling re-ignited

Sabbaticals FAQs (Pdf)

Sabbaticals are a required part of a presbyter's or deacon’s performance of his or her duties They can be extremely beneficial both for the individual minister and for the health of the wider Church and can significantly enhance the ministry of the whole people of God.

For Methodist presbyters and deacons, a sabbatical is a period of release from ordinary ministerial duties, in addition to normal holidays, for the purpose of pursuing an approved programme of study, research, work or experience. It is intended as a time for re-equipping, refreshment and renewal.

All presbyters and deacons in Full Connexion and stationed in an appointment within the control of the Church are expected to take a regular sabbatical. The years in which sabbaticals may be taken are normally every seventh year of travel as a minister.

Click here to see in which year a sabbatical is due (Pdf)

Sabbaticals are part of the continuing development of ministers and as such need to be carefully planned, well in advance. Here are some downloadable resources to help ministers, districts and circuits as they prepare for ministerial sabbaticals 

Global Relations act as a point of contact for ministers who are interested in spending all or most of their sabbatical period with a partner in another country. Please contact


it gave me the time to simply be with God, to listen and not have to rush away; to be touched, healed, restored and directed


Frequently asked Quested in relation to sabbatical expenses and Covid19

Can I use my sabbatical expenses in creative ways?

We are supportive of Districts agreeing sensible, pragmatic arrangements with ministers for sabbatical expenses that are within the spirit of the existing guidance and within the funding available.

I’ve not used all my £1000 allowance – can I use it for other things?

No, If a sabbatical happens to have cost less than the £1k allowance available due to Covid restrictions, that does not mean the balance is available for other purposes such as future Training & Development.

What if I spend more than £1000?

  • If the costs of a sabbatical are higher due to Covid then it is for the minister to determine how this cost is covered or reduced. The £1000 allowance is fixed.

I have lost my deposit on a sabbatical booking what can I do?

If a minister has incurred costs (e.g. a lost deposit) these can be claimed against their £1k allowance, but the allowance is not increased as a result.

The event I was due to attend has been postponed, what do I do?

If a minister has paid a deposit but the event/travel arrangements have been deferred to a later date these costs can still be claimed against their sabbatical allowance even if the deferred timing does not fall within the formal sabbatical period. e.g. the minister plans to take leave to attend the rearranged event. However, any such arrangement must be agreed with the District and Circuit.


Guidance for ministers

Sabbaticals in the Methodist Church (Pdf)

Sabbatical prospectus (Word doc)

Sabbaticals and money (Word doc)

Guidance on the sabbatical expense form (Word doc)

Sabbatical expense form (Word doc)

Advance Sabbatical expense form  (Word doc)


Guidance for districts

Guidelines for district sabbatical officers (Word doc)

Letter from the district to presbyter or deacon (Word doc)

Letter from the district to the circuit (Word doc)


Guidance for circuits

Guidelines for local sabbatical support groups (Word doc)

Local sabbatical support checklist (Word doc)


both I and the church benefited from creative work undertaken


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