What is the Methodist Church in Ireland?
Our church is a community of people who are drawn together by God's love as they know it, expressed in the story of Jesus - his birth and life, teaching, suffering, death and resurrection. We seek to follow the way of Jesus and live to share God's love through action and word in the world. Because this experience of Jesus Christ has so shaped our lives, we invite others to share in the love, life and hope that is freely given to us.
The Methodist Church is a worldwide communion of over 70 million people which originated from the time of the Wesley brothers, John and Charles, in the mid-eighteenth century. John was ordained by the Church of England and he and his hymn writer brother Charles, were members of a group of young men who met daily to pray and study the Bible whilst at Oxford University. Nicknamed “the Holy Club”, they were so methodical in their lifestyle that they were called Methodists, a name which eventually became that of the religious movement which followed.
John Wesley visited Ireland twenty-one times, where he preached in thirty-one of the thirty-two counties. Read more about our history.
The Methodist Church in Ireland has 212 churches or 'societies' with a total community membership of around 53,000. You can locate a church near you by using the Find a church link.
Worship services vary depending on the local community but there are common features:
- You'll be welcomed at the door.
- Children stay with their parents for the first part of the service during which there will be a message especially for them. The younger children then leave to go to another room where they enjoy Sunday School. Very young children can be looked after in the creche but you are welcome to bring them to worship.
- There are readings from the Bible, from the Old and New Testaments and occasionally with responsive readings from the Psalms.
- Methodism is said to be 'born in song', so singing is a vital part of worship. Charles Wesley wrote thousands of hymns for use in worship and also to help teach the predominately illiterate people of the time the basis of Christian faith and theology. Contemporary songs and traditional hymns may be sung.
- The minister or a local preacher will give a sermon which will be based on a reflection of the readings from the Bible, the Word of God.
- The minister or a member of the congregation will lead prayer in their own words as the occasion demands.
- Holy Communion or the Lord's Supper is usually celebrated on the first Sunday of the month but this varies. Participation is open to all who know and love the Lord Jesus but it is not mandatory.
- An offering of money is collected during the service to help support the work of the church.
- There may be refreshments served either at the end or the beginning of the service and which you will be welcomed to join in.
Chaplains are available to help provide support and pastoral care. Click here for contact details of our chaplains.
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