Our Calling

All followers of Christ are called to share in God’s mission, in the power of the Holy Spirit and in company with other Christians.

The Methodist Church continues to discern how to live out its calling in a changed and changing world. The ministry of the Church is exercised as Christians together respond to God’s call and discover and use the gifts which the Holy Spirit has given them.

In the church we help each other recognise and celebrate our gifts, discern and fulfil our calling, and resource and sustain our witness in a range of different contexts.

Some questions for reflection -

  • What are your gifts?
  • What new things might God be calling you to do?
  • How does your calling fit with the calling of the Methodist Church? 

Christ has many services

  • Ministry is not just about ordained ministers
  • All members of the Church have gifts and are called to share in its ministry
  • This can be in the church community, but primarily happens in the wider world
  • Presbyters and Deacons focus, express and enable the servant ministry of all the people of God

Ministry is primarily about the witness of the whole people of God in the world rather than about individuals undertaking particular roles in the church community. Ministry is never an individual endeavour but always exercised as part of the Body of Christ.

Every Christian has a special calling – a unique part to play in God’s mission. What are you being called to do as part of your Christian witness and service – in your everyday life and work or in the church? Might God be calling you to ordained ministry?

The cost of candidating

Pursuing a call to ordained ministry is sacrificial and costly. It will make significant demands on you and those close to you. You will need to consider how this could impact on your income and your free time. Other people will have expectations of you and your availability, which may sometimes be difficult to harmonise with your family’s expectations. You will also need to think about what you are already doing in the church and whether you can continue to do those things whilst candidating. The Church appreciates your generosity and self-sacrifice as you set out on this journey of discernment.

I think God is calling me to be a minister

‘I think God is calling me to be a minister’ - those were the words I finally managed to mumble many years ago when my minister wanted to know why I was asking to see him. They are words that all those who serve as presbyters and deacons in the Methodist Church today have at some point said with varying degrees of nervousness or conviction – to their friends, their spouses, their spiritual guide, their minister – beginning a process of exploration with others in the Church to test their sense of call.

That you are reading this suggests that those are words that you have recently said or thought about saying. This section of the website aims to help you in two ways.

First, we share stories from those who have said those words to the Church and whose call the Church has then tested.

Secondly, we begin to explore what it might mean to discover that God is indeed calling you to ordained ministry – by looking at the characteristic way of being Church that is modern Methodism, the expectations that the Church has of its ministers, and the effect that going forward will have on you and those close to you. There is also an associated set of ‘Called to Ordained Ministry’ postcards (available soon), with pictures and suggestions for reflection, that can be used in your prayers and/or in conversation with someone you trust.

Finally, we explain how to start the formal process of saying to the Church, “I think that God is calling me to be a minister”. May God bless you as you consider taking that step.