United Methodist Beliefs

Do you have questions about the meaning of some of the terms and teachings of the The United Methodist Church? In this series, we ask clergy to share their understanding of topics. No preaching, just conversation. 

United Methodist Beliefs: Organ Donation

 The United Methodist Church recognizes the life-giving benefits of organ and tissue donation and thereby encourages all Christians to become organ and tissue donors,” reports a church policy statement. In a 2000 resolution, the Church also “encourages its congregations to join in the interfaith celebration of National Donor Sabbath …another way that United Methodists can help save lives 

Social Holiness

 United Methodists express our gratitude to God through a happy outlet, compassionate service and work for justice among all the God's human family. Scriptural holiness involves both personal piety or intimacy with God, and a strong desire to love the neighbor God gives to us. We work for justice and the renewal of life in the world. The Social Principles of the United Methodist Church offer detailed analysis and guidance about the social, economic and political responsibilities of United Method


 "John Wesley was a man of deep faith and firm beliefs. But he realized that others of integrity and deep faith had different views from his. While he embraced classical Christian ideas, he understood that unity and common mission arises not so much out of doctrinal agreement, but out of a vital encounter with the risen Christ." 

Prevenient Grace


Wesley understood grace as God's active presence in our lives. This presence is not dependent on human actions or human response. It is a gift that is always available, but it can be refused. God's grace works to create within us a desire to know God and to empower us to respond to God's invitation to be in relationship with Him. This grace enables us to discern differences between good and evil and so it becomes possible for us to choose good.



The United Methodist Church opposes assisted suicide and euthanasia. We believe that suicide is not the way a human life should end. Often suicide is the result of untreated depression, or untreated pain and suffering. The church has an obligation to see that all persons have access to needed pastoral and medical care and therapy in those circumstances that lead to loss of self-worth, suicidal despair, and/or the desire to seek physician-assisted suicide. 

Open Table

 “When we use the term 'open table,' we’re really referring to the Communion table where all are welcome; welcome without regard to difference. It is a table where there are no barriers to community. It is a place where we experience the love of God. ‘God so loved the world that God gave. 

What is a disciple?

 Discipleship is about loving God .... It is more than an acknowledgement of God’s existence or a statement of belief regarding God. It is total devotion, head-over-heels-in-love-with adoration. It is the deep desire to know God, to be one with God, and to worship God. 

Confirmation & Baptism

 Baptism is a sacrament. In a sacrament, God uses common elements - in this case, water - as means or vehicles of divine grace. Baptism is administered by the church as the Body of Christ. It is the act of God through the grace of Jesus Christ and the work of the Holy Spirit.   Confirmation is an opportunity to respond to the grace of God available to us, as acknowledged in baptism, and to promise to live as a person of faith. “What God offers us must be accepted in repentance and faith,”