130 YEARS OF METHODISM

130 YEARS OF METHODISM

Today we celebrate the 130th anniversary of Methodism in Eurasia togetherwith brothers and sisters who came to the Eurasia Consultation to share thejoy of success and support each other in the ministry of the United MethodistChurches in Eurasia.

The history of the People called Methodists in Eurasia began in the year1889, when Finnish mission started its work in Saint-Petersburg.In 1909 Episcopal Methodist Church in Eurasia was recognized officially inthe Russian Empire.

In 1920 Methodists started their ministry in Harbin, Manchuria andVladivostok to serve to Korean population migrated to Siberia and the FarEast. Already by 1922 several Korean and Russian congregations wereopened in Harbin and by 1927 Sunday schools, general education schools, abusiness school, a health clinic, a women social center, a league for children welfare and a theological seminary were established in the area.

The Spirit of God moved the ministry of the Methodists even before 1923 inUzhgorod (now Ukraine), where the 130th and Eurasian Consultation festivalis taking place today. On March 26, 1923, the Missionary Council of theMethodist Episcopal Church of the South (USA) purchased the building as agift for the community of Uzhgorod.

You can learn more about these stories on the page http://umc-eurasia.ru / наша -история / But, as the result of political pressure after the revolution of 1917 and theSecond World War, most signs of the Methodist presence in the Soviet Unionwere erased, church property was confiscated.The United Methodist Church returned with its mission in Russia only afterthe collapse of the Soviet Union in early 1990s with an extensive programof humanitarian aid to the Russian people. Owing to the missionary workfirst congregations appeared in different parts ofRussia (Yekaterinburg, Moscow, Samara) and Ukraine (Kerch and Sevastopol).In 1994 the Russian United Methodist Church got an official stateregistration. Spread of the Gospel and the social ministry facilitated growthand emergence of new churches. In 1995 Moscow Theological Seminary wasestablished to train pastors and leaders for the new congregations.