Q: How do I transfer baptized and professing members to another church?
A superintendent called today asking what he should tell one of his pastors about transferring membership, particularly children who are baptized members, but not yet professing members. Since all United Methodist congregations and pastors are getting used to new forms and records, I did not have a ready answer for him. After a bit of research and a trip to Cokesbury, I told him this:
A: You can transfer baptized members and professing members from one church to another using "Certificates of Transfer" (ISBN: 0-687-360331) — a book of 32 official transfer certificates. The instructions for use of the form are on the back cover. The status of adults (baptized or professing) transferring can be indicated on the front of the form; any children and their dates of baptism can be listed on the back with the date of the baptism.
In addition, a copy of Record of Faith Journey form (ISBN: 0-687-7359333) for each baptized or baptized/professing member should be sent to the new church. This form is new and is required by the Discipline (¶ 230.1). The sending church should keep the original copy.
Every United Methodist Church and pastor should have the 2013-2016 United Methodist Membership Records Manual as a guide for the new record-keeping system consistent with General Conference actions.