What Does Membership Mean?
Membership means choosing to belong.
Sometimes we think of membership like being a member of the Auto Club or the Country Club where we pay for services and privileges. Church membership is different. The apostle Paul used the image of a living body: “For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body-Jews or Greeks, slaves or free-and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.” (I Cor. 12:13) In this biblical sense, to be a member is to be part of a living organism–a vital community animated by the Spirit of God to love and to serve. Paul’s statement also points to the inclusiveness of the church: anyone may make the journey into life in the church.
Choosing to be a member of Philadelphia United Methodist Church means choosing to make a commitment to follow Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. It also means choosing to make a commitment to support this local congregation with your prayers, presence, gifts, service, and witness.
To help you explore what it means to be a member of Philadelphia United Methodist Church, we offer a “Next Steps” class six times a year. In this class we seek to help you:
- make connections with others in this community of faith,
- discover your unique spiritual gifts and
- learn something about how we seek to worship God, grow in faith and serve in love.
WAYS TO JOIN
Profession of Faith
First time believers can publicly acknowledge their commitment to Christ and simultaneously join in membership. Baptism may also be received at this time.
United Methodist Church Transfer
Membership can be transferred from another United Methodist Church where an individual has previously been a member. This process is done through a written transfer request that our membership secretary will assist in completing.
Transfer from another Denomination
Membership may be transferred from a Church of another denomination via written request. Our membership secretary will assist in making this request.
Reaffirmation of Faith/Restoration
If your previous church membership has been terminated for any reason including your request to withdraw, or because you have been inactive for a length of time, you may reaffirm your faith and renew your vows of membership.
Individuals may join the Church through baptism, preceded by a profession of faith. Baptisms from other churches are recognized. Baptismal covenants may also be renewed, if desired.
An affiliate member desires to maintain membership in another United Methodist Church congregation while becoming an active member of Philadelphia United Methodist Church.
An associate member desires to maintain membership in a church of another denomination while becoming an active member of Philadelphia United Methodist Church.
Want to get Your Child Baptized?
We believe that God is at work in every person’s life, even if they are too young to know it! We therefore baptize infants with the sure and certain trust that God longs to give to every child the gift of forgiveness, faith, guidance, and belonging.
Baptism is a sacrament and a gift, and it comes with responsibilities. In our baptismal liturgy, the parents and congregation members affirm their commitment to Jesus Christ and promise to nurture the faith of the little one being baptized within the community of the church. When the baptized child becomes older, he or she has the opportunity to learn more about what it means to be a disciple of Jesus Christ and to make a decision to confirm their faith and fully embrace what was begun at baptism through a process called Confirmation.
To learn more about Baptism or to discuss your readiness to be baptized or have your child baptized, contact Pastor Becky (firstname.lastname@example.org)