Methodist Church of New Zealand

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The Methodist Church of New Zealand (Māori: Te Hāhi Weteriana O Aotearoa) is a Methodist denomination headquartered in Christchurch, New Zealand. It is a member of the World Methodist Council.[1]

The Methodist movement was started by John Wesley, an 18th century English Anglican minister. Methodist missionaries were among the earliest Europeans to come to New Zealand. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries the Methodist Church, with its emphasis on personal salvation and social responsibility, played an important part in the temperance movement and other moral debates. Writer and social reformer Percy Paris became president of the Methodist conference in 1938.[2]

Since the early 1900s the proportion of New Zealanders who are Methodist has declined from 10% to a reported 2.6% in the 2013 census.[3] In its 1983 conference the church made a conscious decision to work towards inclusion of all ethnicities and cultures.[1] Today[when?] the Methodist Church of New Zealand has an estimated 18,548 members.[4] The denomination is supportive of women ministers and clergy in same-sex unions.[5] In 2013, when same-sex marriage was legalized in New Zealand, congregations that opted to do so were able to perform same-sex marriage ceremonies.[6]

Ecumenical relations[edit]

The Methodist Church of New Zealand is a member of the World Council of Churches[7] and the Christian Conference of Asia.[4] Since 2016 the church has participated in an ecumenical platform, National Dialogue for Christian Unity (NDCU), along with Anglicans and Roman Catholics.[8]


  1. ^ a b "Member Churches". World Methodist Council. Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  2. ^ Clements, Kevin P. "Percy Reginald Paris". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved 23 April 2017.
  3. ^ "2013 Census QuickStats about culture and identity". Statistics New Zealand. 15 April 2014. Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  4. ^ a b "Methodist Church of New Zealand — World Council of Churches". Retrieved 2016-04-12.
  5. ^ "Civil Union Zealand Methodist Same-sex marriage". Retrieved 2016-04-12.
  6. ^ "Gay Marriage Coming to the Bay". Archived from the original on 22 January 2015. Retrieved 11 August 2016.
  7. ^ Methodist Church of New Zealand Archived 5 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine., World Council of Churches.
  8. ^ "New Zealand churches open new unity dialogue". 7 March 2016. Retrieved 27 June 2018.

External links[edit]