The Process Church is totally unrelated to "Process Theology" which is a belief system promoted by some liberal Protestant theologians and developed by Charles Hartshorne. It looks upon God and the rest of the universe as being in process, in a state of constant change.
The Process evolved out of a self-help group founded in London, England by Robert de Grimston ("The Teacher"). To a Processean, "The Process" means change - specifically, the changes necessary to avoid the end of the world with its associated judgment.
From 1964 to 1974, Processeans were traveled throughout Europe and North America and organized Traveling, Administrative, and Open Chapters. Church leaders wrote books such as "Exit", "As It Is", "For Christ Is Come", and other titles which the Church used as its reference texts. By mid-1974, several Chapters in the US and one in Canada were operating, with headquarters in Washington DC Free shops for clothing and Free Kitchens for food dispersed donations in all of the Chapters. In the communities where Chapters were located, Processeans took on a variety of projects and received grants from local and state government agencies. Mass feeding stations were established in 'skid-row' areas where Chapters were present; these operated on a daily basis for years. Ministers and Lay-members took part in community action programs and responded to natural disasters alongside the Red Cross and the Salvation Army. Weekly visitations to homes for the elderly, blind, and mentally handicapped were a regular weekly occurrence. In some Chapters, prison ministries were set-up.
The Process welcomed all through its doors. The Church legally ordained women as Priests. The was an equal balance of the sexes in the ruling body and in the operational and administration of the Church and its Chapters. It performed wedding ceremonies, baptisms and ordinations. The Church opposed the Vietnam War but left the decision of military enlistment up to the individual.
A crisis occurred in 1974. Robert de Grimston gradually removed himself from daily Church administration & activities. Disputes arose between the ruling body of the Church and The Teacher. This ultimately led to the dismissal of Robert de Grimston as Chief Theologian. The ruling body legally dissolved The Process. After unsuccessfully trying to reorganize a group of Processeans in Massachusetts, the Teacher returned to England.
In 1979 The Process was reformed as a loosely knit group, under new leadership. In 1987 a vigorous expansion effort began. Private Chapters were established in which individuals operated programs aimed at helping the homeless become self-sufficient.
In 1988, the Society Of Processeans was formed as a largely secular organization. In 1993, the faith and teachings of The Process were declared obsolete, the Archives were destroyed and the Church dissolved. Members continue, organized as a self-help organization. The future is unclear.
The Process Church published the magazine "Process" and a monthly newsletter "The Processeans".
We have forty million reasons for failure, but not a single excuse. - Rudyard Kipling