Various members from the non-denominational Christian Church formed the Council on Christian Union in 1910 which made a distinction in direction from independent Christian Churches and the Restoration Movement.This was even more formalized in 1919 with the establishment of the United Christian Missionary Society.
The Christian Church was a charter participant in the formation of the World Council of Churches (WCC) and of the Federal Council of Churches (now the National Council of Churches), and it continues to be engaged in ecumenical conversations.
The Disciples' local churches are congregationally governed.
In 2008 there were 679,563 members in 3,714 congregations in North America. S population, or roughly 735,000 adult adherents, self-identify with the mainline tradition which is significantly higher than the official membership of 497,423, of whom about 306,905 are active, while roughly 177,141 people attend services each week.
The name, Disciples of Christ, is shared by three other groups, The Churches of Christ, the Independent Christian churches and churches of Christ, and the Christian Congregation. The Stone-Campbell movement began as two separate threads, each without knowledge of the other, during the Second Great Awakening in the early 19th century. Stone began at Cane Ridge, Bourbon County, Kentucky. The second, began in western Pennsylvania and Virginia (now West Virginia), led by Thomas Campbell and his son, Alexander Campbell.
Because the founders wanted to abandon all denominational labels, they used the biblical names for the followers of Jesus that they found in the Bible.
In 1801, the Cane Ridge Revival in Kentucky planted the seed for a movement in Kentucky and the Ohio River Valley to disassociate from denominationalism.In 1803 Stone and others withdrew from the Kentucky Presbytery and formed the Springfield Presbytery.The defining event of the Stone wing of the movement was the publication of the Last Will and Testament of the Springfield Presbytery, at Cane Ridge, Kentucky, in 1804."The Last Will" is a brief document in which Stone and five others announced their withdrawal from Presbyterianism and their intention to be solely part of the body of Christ.The writers appealed for the unity of all who follow Jesus, suggested the value of congregational self-governance, and lifted the Bible as the source for understanding the will of God.They denounced the divisive use of the Westminster Confession of Faith.