American Protestant denomination whose initial progress in ministering to black Americans was thwarted by segregationist policies. The term Methodist originated as a nickname applied to a group of 18th- century Oxford University students known for their methodical application to Scripture study and prayer. The nation’s principal Methodist body is the United Methodist Church, which was formed in 1968 by the merger of the Methodist Church and Evangelical United Brethren Church. It has 10 million members. The three major black denominations are African Methodist Episcopal Church, African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church and Christian Methodist Episcopal Church.
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REFERENCE: Religion Stylebook