What We Believe
How are ‘Independent Methodists’ different from other Methodists?
AIM is a voluntary association of self-governing “independent” congregations that are doctrinally-Methodist. Our theological approach and expression is in keeping with our Wesleyan-Arminian tradition. AIM member churches are connected to other like-minded congregations and are not isolated and alone. Our goal is neither control nor uniformity but only unity in love. Below are a few distinctives:
- Independent Methodist churches own their property (no trust clause)
- Independent Methodist churches call their own pastor (not appointed)
- Independent Methodist church voluntarily contribute to support AIM (no apportionments)
What are your basic beliefs?
Our complete Articles of Belief can be found by clicking here, but a few doctrinal matters that are foundational to our Association are:
- We reaffirm John Wesley’s traditional twenty-five articles of belief.
- The Bible is the inspired and infallible Word of God, inerrant in the original manuscripts.
- There is one God, eternally existent in three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
- Jesus Christ is the only Savior, and the only way to salvation and everlasting life. We believe in His deity, as well as His virgin birth, death, resurrection, ascension, and imminent return.
- Salvation is by grace through faith in the blood atonement of Christ, through the repentance of sins.
- The Biblical account of creation and all other supernatural acts of God recorded in the Scriptures are true.
- Man was created a moral free agent and remains so all the days of his life, with the God-given freedom to choose or reject God throughout one’s life.
- The believer can be cleansed from all sin through the sanctifying power of the blood of Christ and the work of the Holy Spirit.
- There is to be a resurrection of both the saved and the lost: the saved to eternal life and the lost to eternal damnation.
- We believe in and practice two sacraments – baptism (choice of mode) and the Lord’s Supper.
How are you supported?
AIM has no apportionments or required giving percentages for member churches. AIM is supported by voluntary donations from both congregations and individuals. AIM do not assess our member churches or impose financial demands upon our congregations or individuals. AIM asks that individuals and church prayerfully consider what they should contribute to AIM.
Does AIM require a trust clause?
No there is no trust clause. Each member church owns their own property and does not need AIM’s approval to purchase, build, expand, or remodel their facilities.
Does AIM credential ministers?
Yes, AIM credentials ministers. An interested minister may apply for AIM credentials through a process which includes filling out and returning an application for credentials ministerial questionnaire, participating in a ministerial inquiry, agreeing with, and adhering to the Articles of Belief and Rules of Discipline of the Association of Independent Methodists. We encourage our people to answer God’s call to ministry and then encourage them to prepare through the best training available.
To request an application for credentials, click here and in the comment or message box type Request Application for Credentials.
Does AIM help churches find a Pastor?
Yes, AIM works with our member churches in identifying suitable pastoral candidates. AIM joins in prayer with the member church in prayer as they seek God in their pastoral search. AIM comes alongside a member church and assists them with the writing of a job description, the pastoral search, and the interviewing of potential candidates. AIM screens and recommends only candidates that meet AIM’s guidelines for credentialling.
Does AIM credential women pastors?
Yes, AIM does credential women pastors if they meet AIM’s criteria for credentialing.
- A clear testimony about being born again
- A clear call to ministry
- Confirmation of gifts and graces for ministry
- Godly Christian character
- Wesleyan-Arminian in doctrine (in agreement with AIM’s Articles of Belief)
How does a church join AIM?
A church must vote to join AIM. Then a church completes an application for membership. By signing the membership application, the church affirms that it believes that their congregation is in doctrinal agreement with the AIM Articles of Belief and Rules of Discipline, and that their congregation believes that the Bible is the inspired, infallible, inerrant, and authoritative Word of God. The church also makes a commitment to both participate in the life of and support the ministry of AIM. The church then returns the signed membership application along with the minutes of the meeting when the church voted to join AIM. Once the paperwork has been returned to the AIM it is reviewed by the Executive Committee. If a member of the Executive Committee or one of its representatives has not visited the prospective member church an onsite visit is then arranged prior to the Executive Committee voting on the church’s membership application. Once approved by the Executive Committee the church is officially recognized as a member church. There is no fee to join AIM.