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July 23, 2009

The no holds barred attempt to snuff out the Methodist Church in Fiji by Frank’s illegal regime is coming to a head. What is unfolding is the struggle between the forces of good represented by the Methodist Church and evil represented by Frank’s illegal regime. Frank the evil accuser in his warped sense of being above politics accusers the Church through its lawfully constituted constitution via its annual Conference of being involved in politics.

All except him folks! 

What then is Frank and his evil empire’s strategy?

Answer: Simple- by not having the annual Methodist Conference the Church becomes illegal like him and his regime!

For the Annual Conference is the only lawful constituted forum that authorises all church business both spiritual and temporal.

Under the Methodist Constitution, the hierarchy of the Methodist Church has at its apex the Annual Conference, also known as Church Conference or simply Conference. The following Chart shows what the power structure of the Church looks like.

Fiji Methodist Church Structure

Annual Conference (Supreme body)

Standing Committee (Executive body of the Conference)

President of the Church (Chief pastor and official Representative of the Church)

General Secretary (Executive Officer of the Conference)

Divisional Superintendents (Responsible pastors and officials of the Church in each Division)

Circuit Ministers and Ministers (Responsible pastors within the Circuit)

Church laity

From the above Chart, it is clear that the supreme or all-powerful body of the Church is the Annual Conference. It is a large and representative body and meets only once a year. 
Clauses 67 and 68 of the Constitution provide as follows:-

“67. There shall be a Conference of the Methodist Church in Fiji, which shall meet annually. There shall be one Conference only, comprising both ministerial and lay representatives.

68. The Conference shall consist of the following:

(a) Ordained ministers 
(b) The lay vice- President 
(c) The two immediate past vice- Presidents 
(d) Circuit lay representatives 
(e) One lay representative from each section of the secretariat 
(f) The head or one representative from

Dilkusha Girls’ Home 
Veilomani Boys’ home 
Ba Methodist Hospital 
Methodist Lay Training Centre 
Methodist Handcraft and Farming School

(g) The Administrator of the Deaconess Order 
(h) The President and the Secretary of the Methodist Women’s Fellowship 
(i) A representative of the Overseas Missions Committee 
(j) The Secretary for Education 
(k) The Principal or Head Teacher of each church school or his/ her representative 
(l) All ordained deaconesses 
(m) One woman representative from each division 
(n)One youth representative from each division, being a member of the Church under 30 years of age 
(o) Ex officio lay national leaders of the church (Financial Secretary, Property Development Supervisor) 
(p) The President’s Panel. For this the President may appoint no more than ten extra lay members of Conference choosing church members who, in his judgment, have a special contribution to make to the work of the Annual Conference.”

“Each Annual Conference of the Methodist Church in Fiji shall appoint a Standing Committee to act as the executive of the Conference in matters which may arise between Conferences.

The responsibilities and functions of the Standing Committee are set out in the Appendix to the Constitution of the Church which provides as follows:  

A. Terms of Reference of the Standing Committee

1. To make decisions on matters which are not otherwise provided for in the Constitution of the Methodist Church in Fiji.

2. To deal with matters which, by the Constitution of the Methodist Church in Fiji, are under the authority of the Conference.

3. To see that Conference decisions are carried out, making any supplementary decisions necessary to ensure this.

4. To deal with matters which the Conference directs the Standing Committee to handle, including the items under Section A of the Conference Agenda.

5. To receive reports of the decisions of the Working Committee on Ministry, and to take any action necessary.

B. Personnel of the Standing Committee

The Standing Committee shall consist of 32 people. Provision shall be made for representation of women, youth and minority groups in the Church.

1. The following shall be ex officio members:

The President, Ex- President, Vice- President, General Secretary, the Superintendent of the Suva-Davuilevu Division, the Superintendent of the Indian Division, 1 lay representative of the Indian Division recommended by its Annual Divisional Meeting.

2. The remaining members shall be elected by Conference in such a way as to give equal representation on the committee to ministers and lay people, including the ex officio members. They shall include at least 4 women, at least 1 young person, and at least 3 representatives of minority groups within the Church (e.g. Indian, Rotuman, Banaban, European etc.).

3. Any lay person who has been a representative to any two Conferences may be included in the personnel, subject to the provisions in paragraph C on the method of election, and provided that he/she is a confirmed member of the Methodist Church for a period of not less than four continuous years, and has consented in writing to being nominated.

4. The Standing Committee shall serve from January to December of the year following its election.” 

Yes all ye faithful Methodists should their be no Conference this August then according to our constitution the church and we the flock will all become like Frank and his regime– Illegal. The persecution and jailing of the standing committee members is the harbinger of the beast that has been foretold in the bible in the end days.

This is just what the Devil Frank wants! Do we want that and suffer eternal damnation! No! So stand up and defend your faith now! 

Modechai Ester

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