From The Very Rev Opeyemi Awe, Interim Coordinating Secretary, AMC
I greet you all in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. We bring to you the good news of the emergence of the Africa Methodist Council. After several attempts “God is working his purpose out as year succeeds to year”
As far back as early 1986, there had been attempts to bring together Methodist Leaders across the continent of Africa, you will recall that it was at the World Conference held in Nairobi, Kenya that Bishop Lawhi Imathiu emerged as the first African to chair the World Methodist Council. The tenure of Bishop Lawhi Imathiu raised the question about the need for the leaders to come together across Africa.
At the Conference in Singapore in 1991, the number of delegates from Africa showed a significant increase and an informal meeting was arranged. The Conference after that of Singapore was held in Rio de Jainero in Brazil in 1996; where the idea came up that leaders should meet in a formal way and it received wide acceptance, this was what gave way to the meeting of the first All Africa Methodist Leaders Conference. This meeting held at Northfield Methodist Church, Benoni, South Africa. The meeting took place from March 15th – 18th, 1998.This was the first meeting of the Methodist family in Africa to come together and discuss issues that affects the continent.
The theme of the Conference was “Africa: Our Parish”. The delegates came from thirteen African countries. African Methodists took the initiative of organizing the event, which was hosted by the Methodist Church in Southern Africa in order to find a common perspective on the challenges facing African communities.
The overall aims of the conference was to
- Create a forum where Methodist Churches share what they are doing.
- To promote unity and co-operation within Methodist Churches in Africa.
- To speak with one voice on issues affecting Africa.
Under the leadership of His Eminence Dr Sunday Mbang, head of the Methodist Church in Nigeria, a committee was formed to organize the next meeting, which will be held in Kenya from March 4-8, 2000. However, the meeting of AAMLC took place in Iperu-Remo from March 1st – 5th, 2002.
This meeting was fairly well attended with participants drawn from, South Africa, Ghana, Gambia, Sierra-Leone, Nigeria and from the General Board of Global Ministries of the United Methodist Church. It is important to note that the World Church Office of the Methodist Church in Great Britain provided the funding for this Conference.
That meeting in Nigeria mandated the Secretaries of Conference from the various regions of Africa to meet and proffer ways and means of ensuring implementation of the decisions made as contained in the resolutions under reference.
The meeting of the Secretaries of Conference across Africa, the first of its kind took place at the Kempton Park Conference Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa from Tuesday 29th October to 31st October 2002.
African representatives meeting at the All Partners consultations sponsored by the Methodist Church in Britain, in London from 20-23 June 2010, was of one mind that a Pan African Methodist Leaders’ Consultation be convened in preparation for the 2011 World Methodist Council/Conference.
It was agreed that the consultation be hosted by the Methodist Church of Southern Africa from November 30 to December 2, 2010 in Durban, South Africa.
The meeting in Durban, South Africa led to the Pan African Leaders Consultation which took place at the Methodist Guest House and Conference Centre, Nairobi Kenya on the 22nd to the 24th March 2011.
Where are we Now ?
An Advance Team Consultation took place in Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria on Sunday, 23rd – Thursday, 27th November 2014, where it was resolved that in order to put in place the Africa Methodist Council, a Heads of Churches meeting should be put in place. The Heads of Churches meeting are expected to ratify the recommendations of the Advance Team consultation. The date for the Heads of Churches Meeting is
Date: Thursday 15th – Sunday 18th October, 2015.
Venue: Freeman Methodist Centre, Kumasi Ghana.
Expected Participants are All Heads of Methodist Conferences in Africa.The different strains must be brought on board the Africa Methodist Council. Such families are, Africa Methodist Episcopal (AME), Africa Methodist Episcopal Zion, United Methodist Church, and Christian Methodist Episcopal Church e.t.c.
For further details please contact