Ministers of other Churches FAQs
Frequently asked questions by ministers of other conferences and churches, September 2016
When is the deadline for applications?
The deadline each year is 15 January (as set down in Standing Orders). Applications received after this date cannot be accepted and ministers will be invited to reapply the following year.
What exactly can I apply to do?
There are various ways in which ordained ministers of other conferences and churches can apply to serve in the Methodist Church in Britain. They are detailed on the website and in a handbook that can be found here. If, after you have read the handbook, you have any questions, please contact email@example.com.
Where are the application forms?
The forms are revised each year and published in the autumn. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to register your interest and you will be sent the application forms as soon as they are published.
I've only just been ordained - is that ok?
Whilst there are no formal policies that insist on a length of service before applying, the panels tend to have more hesitations about applicants who are only recently ordained and you may therefore wish to reflect on whether you are sufficiently experienced in ministry before you apply.
I am not yet ordained - can I still apply?
It is possible for recommended candidates, student ministers or probationers to transfer into the Methodist Church in Britain but not to be Recognised & Regarded. If this is your situation, please get in touch with us (by e-mailing email@example.com) and we shall discuss the options with you.
When are the interviews?
For applicants for transfer into Full Connexion, interviews usually are held in March. For applicants for Recognised & Regarded status, interviews are usually held in July.
Who pays for me to attend the interview?
Applicants are responsible for covering the costs of their visa, travel and accommodation (if necessary) to attend the interview. You will be required to stay overnight for the interview, the cost of which will be covered by the Methodist Church in Britain.
When do I find out the decision of the panel?
You will be contacted within a couple of days of the panel with its recommendation.
How long is the process?
Can I choose where I am stationed?
All ministers who are recommended by a transfer panel and who will be entering their first appointment in the Methodist Church in Britain go through a process called 'initial stationing.' The Initial Stationing Sub-Committee will take into account your gifts in ministry and your personal circumstances - however, you cannot 'choose' your appointment. The sub-committee will agree a match based on the needs of the Church and the gifts, skills and circumstances of the ministers available. If no suitable appointment is available, the Initial Stationing Sub-Committee will attempt to match you with a suitable appointment the following year.
Will I have an interview with the local church before I'm stationed?
Normally, a minister will visit the circuit with which he or she has been matched. This is not an interview but a chance for introductory conversations between the circuit and the minister. However, this is not a requirement for ministers currently living overseas. In these instances, the circuit may well want to speak with you via Skype or similar means.
Who pays for my visa?
As noted above, you are responsible for covering the cost of your visa (if necessary) to attend the interview. If you are coming from outside the United Kingdom and are recommended and stationed, you may need a visa to work in the UK. The cost of the visa application will be borne by the Methodist Church Fund. The costs will be restricted to the period of an initial appointment to serve the Methodist Church in Britain and will cover the costs of the application for you and up to three additional dependents, ie four persons altogether.
Will any kind of training be provided?
The Methodist Church offers a comprehensive induction programme for those entering their first station in this country in which we expect that accepted applicants will participate. If you are accepted and matched with an appointment, you will be sent the details. The first part of the programme will be in the fortnight before your appointment formally begins, so you will need to arrange to be in Britain in good time to be part of that.
Where can I find information about the structure of the Methodist Church in Britain?
Information about the structure of the Methodist Church in Britain can be found here.
How much is a stipend in the Methodist Church in Britain?
The Methodist Conference approved a standard stipend of £23,184 for the year commencing 1 September 2016.
If you are recommended to be stationed to an appointment in the Methodist Church in Great Britain, you will be sent full details of the financial arrangements that we make for our ministers.
What about my pension?
If a minister works in the UK they should be automatically enrolled onto the pension scheme - the Methodist Ministers' Pension Scheme.
The benefits they accrue may be able to be transferred once they return to their home church but this depends on whether this is permitted by HMRC in the UK. If the transfer is not permitted the benefits can remain in the UK and be paid out at retirement in the form of a pension, or a pension and lump sum. The pension can be paid to an overseas bank account.
I have retired from active ministry. Can I still apply?
Those who are Recognised & Regarded by the Conference hold that status whilst in an appointment in the active work. Therefore, if you have retired you would need to return (or to have the permission of your home church to return) to active ministry before you could apply.
It is possible for ministers who have retired to be received into Full Connexion as supernumeraries. This is the avenue that is usually followed by those who have settled in Britain after retirement.
Can my own church prevent my transferring?
We can only receive applications for ministers who are in good standing with their home church and have the permission of their bishop (or equivalent) to serve in the Methodist Church in Britain.
I am ordained but no longer a minister in my own denomination? Can I apply?
Former ministers of other conferences and churches can apply to be received into Full Connexion with us. Please contact us if that is your situation for a preliminary conversation.