Union American Methodist Episcopal Church, The

Union American Methodist Episcopal Church, the was founded by Rev. Peter Spencer, in Wilmington, Del., June, 1813, and was composed of seceding colored members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. It was chartered under the title of "The African Union Church," which it retained until after the war, when its present name was adopted. Originally the ministers served without compensation, and without any limit to their term of service. The societies, though adopting common articles of religion, usages, and discipline, were distinct from each other. In 1871 a convention was called, which adopted an itinerant ministry, limiting the pastoral term to two years; and permitting compensation. The doctrines are precisely those of the Methodist Episcopal Church as are also the general features of the government. They have a general conference, meeting once in four years; annual conferences, of which there are now three; quarterly conferences; love-feasts; and class-meetings. General superintendents are elected by the General Conference, who hold office for four years, and are eligible to reelection. The total number of ministers in 1890 was 112; other statistics as follows:

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