Methodist Church of Australasia

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The Methodist Church of Australasia was a Methodist denomination based in Australia. On 1 January 1902, five Methodist denominations in Australia – the Wesleyan Methodist Church, the Primitive Methodists, the Bible Christian Church, the United Methodist Free and the Methodist New Connexion Churches came together to found a new church. [1] In polity it largely followed the Wesleyan Methodist Church. This Church established a General Conference, meeting triennially, for Australasia (which then included New Zealand) in 1875, with Annual Conferences in the States.


The church ceased to exist in 1977 when most of its congregations joined with the many congregations of the Congregational Union of Australia and the Presbyterian Church of Australia to form the Uniting Church in Australia.

There are still independent Methodist congregations in Australia, including congregations formed or impacted by Tongan immigrants. The Wesleyan Methodist Church of Australia is derived from the Wesleyan Methodist Church of America and did not join the Uniting Church in Australia.


The triennial conference was led by the President-General. There were a total of 25 Presidents General over the life of the Methodist Church of Australasia, from its formation in 1902 until the Uniting Church in 1977. [2]

1902Rev. George Lane , DD
1904Rev. William Henry Fitchett BA, LLD
1907Rev. William Williams DD, FLS
1910Rev. Henry Youngman
1913Rev. George Brown DD
1917Rev. James Edward Carruthers DD
1920Rev. Alexander McCallum DD
1923Rev. Edward Holdsworth Sugden MA, BSc, Litt.D
1926Rev. John Gladwell Wheen
1929Rev. Frank Lade MA
1932Rev. Albert Thomas Holden BA, CBE, VD
1935Rev. Arthur Johnstone Barclay
1938Rev. Arthur Edward Albiston MA, BD
1941Rev. Harold Manuel Wheller OBE
1945Rev. John Wear Burton MA, DD
1948Rev. Herbert Garfield Secomb DD
1951Rev. George Calvert Barber CBE, MA, BD, PhD
1954Rev. Robert Bathurst Lew OBE, ED, BA, DD
1957Rev. Harold Wood , OBE, MA, DD, DipEd, FACE
1960Rev. Hubert Hedley Trigge OBE, MA, BD
1963Rev. William Frank Hambly MA, BD, DD
1966Rev. Cecil Gribble , OBE, MA, DipEd, LRSM
1969Rev. Charles Kingston Daws CBE, ED, FASA, FLCS, LCA
1972Rev. Rex Collis Mathias MA, DipREd.
1975Rev. Winston D’Arcy O’Reilly OBE, MA, DipSocSci, MACE

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  1. "METHODIST CHURCH OF AUSTRALASIA". The Sydney Morning Herald . National Library of Australia. 1 January 1902. p. 5. Retrieved 28 January 2016.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. Eric G. Clancy (September 2002). "Methodist Leaders: The Presidents General of the General Conference of the Methodist Church of Australasia, 1902-1977" (PDF). Church Heritage. United Theological College . Retrieved 3 February 2018.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)