Methodist Church of Australasia

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The Methodist Church of Australasia was a Methodist denomination based in Australia. On 1 January 1902, five Methodist denominations in Australia – the Wesleyan Methodist Church, the Primitive Methodists, the Bible Christian Church, the United Methodist Free and the Methodist New Connexion Churches came together to found a new church.[1] In polity it largely followed the Wesleyan Methodist Church. This Church established a General Conference, meeting triennially, for Australasia (which then included New Zealand) in 1875, with Annual Conferences in the States.

The church ceased to exist in 1977 when most of its congregations joined with the many congregations of the Congregational Union of Australia and the Presbyterian Church of Australia to form the Uniting Church in Australia.

There are still independent Methodist congregations in Australia, including congregations formed or impacted by Tongan immigrants. The Wesleyan Methodist Church of Australia is derived from the Wesleyan Methodist Church of America and did not join the Uniting Church in Australia.


The triennial conference was led by the President-General. There were a total of 25 Presidents General over the life of the Methodist Church of Australasia, from its formation in 1902 until the Uniting Church in 1977.[2]

year President-General
1902 Rev. George Lane , DD
1904 Rev. William Henry Fitchett BA, LLD
1907 Rev. William Williams DD, FLS
1910 Rev. Henry Youngman
1913 Rev. George Brown DD
1917 Rev. James Edward Carruthers DD
1920 Rev. Alexander McCallum DD
1923 Rev. Edward Holdsworth Sugden MA, BSc, Litt.D
1926 Rev. John Gladwell Wheen
1929 Rev. Frank Lade MA
1932 Rev. Albert Thomas Holden BA, CBE, VD
1935 Rev. Arthur Johnstone Barclay
1938 Rev. Arthur Edward Albiston MA, BD
1941 Rev. Harold Manuel Wheller OBE
1945 Rev. John Wear Burton MA, DD
1948 Rev. Herbert Garfield Secomb DD
1951 Rev. George Calvert Barber CBE, MA, BD, PhD
1954 Rev. Robert Bathurst Lew OBE, ED, BA, DD
1957 Rev. Harold Wood , OBE, MA, DD, DipEd, FACE
1960 Rev. Hubert Hedley Trigge OBE, MA, BD
1963 Rev. William Frank Hambly MA, BD, DD
1966 Rev. Cecil Gribble, OBE, MA, DipEd, LRSM
1969 Rev. Charles Kingston Daws CBE, ED, FASA, FLCS, LCA
1972 Rev. Rex Collis Mathias MA, DipREd.
1975 Rev. Winston D’Arcy O’Reilly OBE, MA, DipSocSci, MACE

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "METHODIST CHURCH OF AUSTRALASIA". The Sydney Morning Herald. National Library of Australia. 1 January 1902. p. 5. Retrieved 28 January 2016.
  2. ^ Eric G. Clancy (September 2002). "Methodist Leaders: The Presidents General of the General Conference of the Methodist Church of Australasia, 1902-1977" (PDF). Church Heritage. United Theological College. Retrieved 3 February 2018.