Zion Methodism grew out of the merciless enslavement of our African forefathers. They were kidnapped from their native land, chained, shackled, and shipped as beasts in deplorable conditions to a strange and distant land, having no family, no culture and no language. Yet, our fathers and mothers were comforted by the Lord God, through Jesus Christ, in the cotton fields and every place of their humiliation and degradation revealing to them that He would always be with them as He had been with them in the past. When Jesus, upon whom the Spirit of the Lord had descended, was preached at John Street Methodist Church, they united with that fellowship. However, bigotry and oppressively cruel barriers confronted them. The Spirit of the Lord led them in the establishment of Zion Chapel (which later became The Mother Church of Zion Methodism) where the gospel of His redeeming grace could be experienced. Taking with them the doctrines, discipline, and polity of The Methodist Church, they proceeded in the establishment of Zion Methodism. They believed that God had called them out of their bondage and had chosen them to be His people and a channel of His redeeming love for all people.
We believe and understand today that, in the Divine Economy, Zion Methodism is to make disciples of all persons throughout the earth, to bring good news to the poor, to proclaim release to the captive, recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free and to proclaim the Year of the Lord’s favor. We are to continue this mission until Christ, God’s Son, shall come again.
The Structure of the A.M.E. Zion Church
GENERAL CONFERENCE - Meets every four (4) years, makes laws, church policy; approves budget. Our supreme body also elects both:
BOARD OF BISHOPS - Which meets twice a year and oversees the Connection between the General Conferences and...
GENERAL OFFICERS - Who oversee the operation of the Departments of the Connection and appoints the...
CONNECTIONAL COUNCIL - Which meets once a year, and these Administrative Boards make recommendations to the Board of Bishops and the General Conference
THE CONNECTION IS DIVIDED INTO:
EPISCOPAL DISTRICTS - There are twelve (12): each presided over by a Bishop (we have twelve active Bishops). Each Episcopal Area is divided into...
ANNUAL CONFERENCES - Which meet once a year. The Bishop presides. We have 61 Annual Conferences, each is divided into...
DISTRICT CONFERENCES - Which meet once a year and is presided over by a Presiding Elder, who is appointed by the Bishop. Each District is divided into...
LOCAL CHURCHES - The Pastor is appointed by the Bishop. We have over 6,600 churches worldwide. Each has:
Quarterly Conference - Which meet 4 times a year.
Class Leaders' Meeting - Which usually meet once a month.
Members' Meeting/Conference - which meets when called by the Pastor
What Methodists Believe
We believe that all men are sinners.
We believe that God the Father loves all men and hates all sin.
We believe that Jesus Christ died for all men to make possible their salvation from sin through their belief.
We believe that all who repent of their sins and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ receive the forgiveness of sin.
We believe that all that are accepted as the children of God may receive the inward assurance of the Holy Spirit to that fact.
We believe that all that are made “new creatures” in Christ Jesus are accepted as the children of God.
We believe that all who truly desire to seek it may love God with all their hearts, souls, minds and strength and their neighbors as themselves.
We believe that a man born of god is consecrated and set apart for service unto God and that the process of growth begins and is followed by degrees of development ever having as its goal entire sanctification and Christian perfection.
We believe that the gift of the Holy Spirit is possible unto all men as a guide, a teacher and a light.
We believe in the Kingdom of God which means the reign of God in every area of human life and society.
We believe that all who persevere to the end shall be saved but that souls may lapse from grace and become partially corrupt or even fall wholly away from God and be lost forever.
We believe that God is eternal and Jesus is the conqueror of the grave and we, being united by faith with Him share His everlasting life.