Section A – Introduction

Methodist Model Trust property can be used by another Christian church or congregation for non-Methodist services and meetings for public religious worship separately to the Methodist congregation under Model Trust 14(2A), Model Trust 14(1) and in conjunction with Standing Order 920. However, before allowing another Christian church or congregation to use their property for such purposes, Managing Trustees must first obtain the consent of the Methodist Council. This guidance note refers to this consent as “Schedule 14a Consent” taking the name of the form used to apply for it. To assist Managing Trustees in fulfilling the requirements under the Model Trusts and Standing Orders , the underlying requirements are set out in the flow chart in Section B (Schedule 14a Flow Chart) and the steps to be followed are set out in the process chart in Section C (Schedule 14a Process Chart).

Please use this Schedule 14a Flow Chart and Process Chart for use of Methodist property under Model Trust 14(2A) only. This is use of Model Trust property by another Christian church or congregation that is separate to ongoing public Methodist worship and does not constitute a joint service or meeting.

Please note that once given, consent under Schedule 14a lasts for 12 months only. Once the 12 months has expired, new consent will be required and must be applied for with a fresh Schedule 14a. The Managing Trustees would also need to enter into a new licence or booking form.

Please refer to Section D of this guidance note for links to the further guidance and documents that are available on licences in general and use under Model Trust 14(2A) in particular.

Section B – Schedule 14a Flow Chart

The Schedule 14a Flow Chart aims to help Managing Trustees to identify whether Schedule 14a Consent is required. If Managing Trustees are unsure as to whether a proposed activity constitutes “worship”, queries should be directed to the Secretary of the Faith and Order Committee. The Schedule 14a Flow Chart assists Managing Trustees in identifying whether the underlying requirements have been met before Schedule 14a Consent can be requested.  In summary, these requirements are:

  • Use will be on the basis of a licence and NOT a lease (the other Christian church or congregation will not have exclusive use of the property)
  • The Church Council agree to use by the Christian church or congregation in principle
  • The Superintendent agrees to the proposals

Schedule 14a Flowchart

Download the above chart as a pdf file

Section C – Schedule 14a Process Chart

 

1.

Prepare a licence or booking form setting out the terms on which the Group can use the property.

 

A standard form of licence for use of premises for Christian worship (Worship Licence), for regular but part-time, non-exclusive use, is available. It has the deemed approval of the Connexional Team under Standing Order 931(3) if used without amendment. This is available on TMCP’s website.

 

A template booking form for use of premises for Christian worship (Worship Booking Form), for one-off or very occasional use, is also available. It reflects best practice and has the deemed approval of the Connexional Team if used without amendment. This is available on TMCP’s website.

 

Managing Trustees may find the Licence Flow Chart and the Licence Guidance 1 – When to Use the Standard Licence helpful if they are unsure as to whether to proceed with a licence or booking form.


=> If the Worship Licence or Worship Booking Form are used without amendment, then please complete the details that can be inserted now and proceed to Step 2.


=> If the Managing Trustees intend to amend the Worship Licence or Worship Booking Form then please forward the proposed wording to TMCP Legal for review. Amendments to the Worship Licence require approval by TMCP on behalf of the Connexional Team under SO 931(3). Once the document has been approved/reviewed by TMCP as appropriate => Proceed to Step 2.


Please  refer to the Worship Licence and Booking Form Document Guide for guidance. If Managing Trustees have any questions about the standard documents please contact TMCP Legal.

 

2. Prepare the Application Schedule 14a available from the Methodist Church’s website at:
https://www.methodist.org.uk/our-work/building-relationships/relationships-with-other-denominations/resources-and-information/resources/sharing-of-buildings/
=> Proceed to Step 3
3.

Check with the District whether they want to see the Schedule 14a before it is submitted for consideration on behalf of the Methodist Council (step 4).

 

=> If they do not, proceed straight to Step 4


=> If they do, please submit documents (A) and (B) listed in step 4 together with any other documents the District asks to see.


=> If the District approves, proceed to Step 4


=> If the District does not approve, the Group cannot use the property for worship. Please advise them accordingly.

4.

Prepare and submit the documents listed at (A) and (B) below to the Connexional Ecumenical Officer or in his/her absence the Assistant Secretary of the Conference at Methodist Church House, 25 Marylebone Road, London, NW1 5JR or email: stubbensn@methodistchurch.org.uk so that Methodist Council consent to use of the property by the Group can be considered:


(A) Completed Application Schedule 14a


(B) Statement of beliefs – this may not be required if the Christian church or congregation is well known. This would include members of bodies such as the national ecumenical instruments e.g. Churches Together or groups that use other Methodist premises already. If unsure, Managing Trustees should include the statement (so that it is there if required) or seek clarification from the Connexional Ecumenical Officer directly and/or the Conference Office generally.


=> If Schedule 14a Consent is not confirmed then the Group cannot use the property for worship. Please advise them accordingly.


=> If Schedule 14a Consent is confirmed and the Schedule 14a is signed then proceed to Step 5.

5.

The Managing Trustees can now enter into the agreed form of licence (or booking form) and allow the Group to use the property. Managing Trustees need to:

  • Make sure that the Superintendent has the original Schedule 14a.
  • Send a copy to the Presbyter in Pastoral charge.
  • File a copy with supporting papers with the Church deeds.
  • Provide a copy to the District so that the District Ecumenical Officer can maintain a record of licences granted under Model Trust 14(2A) in accordance with best practice.
  • Fulfill the ongoing responsibilities set out in Step 6.
6.

Managing Trustees need to have regard to their ongoing responsibilities:

  • There is an ongoing responsibility under Standing Order 920(1) for the Managing Trustees and the Superintendent to keep under review the teaching given at all non-Methodist public religious meetings held on Model Trust property pursuant to Model Trust 14(2A).
  • The licence should be terminated immediately if anything is done or said to offend, deny or repudiate the doctrinal standards of the Methodist Church. (An upcoming booking should similarly be cancelled if anything comes to light post booking leading the Managing Trustees to believe that anything will be done or said to offend, deny or repudiate the doctrinal standards.)
  • Diarise expiry of the Schedule 14a Consent, and if Managing Trustees want to allow the Group to continue using the property after expiry of the Schedule 14a Consent, or to use the property for another one-off occasion then, => Proceed to Step 7.


Managing Trustees need to bear in mind that the Consent under Schedule 14a only lasts up to 12 months as set out under Model Trust 14(2A).

7.

To enable a Group to continue using the premises, after expiry of the original Schedule 14a Consent or for another occasion of one-off use, the Managing Trustees will need to obtain the consent of the Methodist Council once again (by submitting a new Schedule 14a).

 

Accordingly please use the Schedule 14a Flow Chart to check that the underlying requirements have been met and then follow Steps 1 to 5 allowing sufficient time for Schedule 14a Consent and any approvals to the form of licence/ booking form to be obtained, before the Group next wish to meet following expiry of the existing licence (or the anniversary of the date of the original Schedule 14a Consent if earlier).

 

 

Disclaimer

 

Please note that this document is to provide guidance and assistance to Managing Trustees and their professional advisers. This guidance note is general in nature, may not reflect all recent legal developments and may not apply to the specific facts and circumstances of any particular matter.

 

Also note that nothing within the documents and guidance notes provided by TMCP nor any receipt or use of such information, should be construed or relied on as advertising or soliciting to provide any legal services. Nor does it create any solicitor-client relationship or provide any legal representation, advice or opinion whatsoever on behalf of TMCP or its employees.

 

Accordingly, neither TMCP nor its employees accept any responsibility for use of this document or action taken as a result of information provided in it.

 

Please remember that Managing Trustees need to take advice that is specific to the situation at hand. This document is not legal advice and is no substitute for such advice from Managing Trustees' own legal advisers.