The Methodists began work in the Bismarck Archipelago in 1875 and in New Ireland in 1877. They moved into British New Guinea in 1889 at the request of Sir William MacGregor. They were particularly active in islands to the southeast of New Guinea, including the Trobriands. In 1890 the church consolidated its position in the Gazelle Peninsula, in the island of New Britain, in German New Guinea. Like some other missionary groups the Methodists translated parts of the Bible and simple religious texts into the local languages. They had long been active in other parts of the Pacific and, like the London Missionary Society, brought South Sea Island pastors and teachers to assist them. By 1914 they had a strong following in many of the islands of both Papua and German New Guinea. They did not move into the highlands until the 1950s. In 1968 the Methodists joined Papua Ekalesia, which had been established by the London Missionary Society and the Kwato Extension Association in 1962, to form the United Church.