Methodists/Full Connection


I've done a great deal of reading on the UMC (have a long way to go, though).  I keep looking for a precise definition of "full connection", but am not finding it.  I have certainly inferred its meaning, but would be grateful if you could tell me exactly.

I'm also interested in the history of the term (i.e. when / how it started), as I believe it goes back to the 1700s.  I presume it is related to Connectionalism.  My apologies; I'm in a hurry to know, so am asking here rather than doing my own (as would likely be more appropriate!) research......

Thank you so much.

Dear Katharine:

    "Full Connection" refers to a professional minister's relationship to the Annual Conference. Elders and Deacons "in full connection" are fully members of the Annual Conference, with rights to speak and vote on all matters, including the closed meeting of the clergy at Conference. Others, such as probationary members, lay pastors, and commissioned pastors, are restricted in their ability to attend or to vote in various meetings or settings of the Annual Conference.

    When "full members" retire, they are continue to be "in full connection."


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The Rev. William E. Olewiler


United Methodist church structure and doctrine. Science and religion. Christian Education and the Sunday School. Religion and race. Women in the church. United Methodist pastor for 22 years. Member, commissions on Religion and Race and Status and Role of Women. Masters in Divinity and Religious Education.


Ordained deacon and elder, United Methodist Church. District and conference leadership.

Bachelor of Arts, Political Science, George Washington University, Washington DC Master of Arts, Political Science, Brown University, Providence RI Master of Arts, Teaching Secondary Social Studies, Teachers College/Columbia University, New York NY Master of Divinity, Wesley Theological Seminary, Washington DC Doctor of Ministry, Wesley Theological Seminary, Washington DC

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