A Call to Compliance



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I have said on many occasions that the strength of the Methodist movement depends on the large number of advocates for the John Wesley social justice concept. The restructure plan severly reduces the number of knowledgeable leaders in that field. Those of us who have had the privilege of serving the church at the denominational level know that our experiences have enabled us to be better sources of information in our more local situations. The proposed restructure leans heavily toward a transition to a heavily hierarchical concept rather than the historic democracy concept that John Wesley envisioned and that has been the major reason for the strength of Methodism since in beginning. Not only will the restructure plan have that effect, it will also tend to decrease the financial health fo the church because of a reluctance of individuals to support a program whose operation is not fully understood because of the lack of available and knowledgeable proponents serving in their communities. I pray that the GC delegates will understand that and have the courage to stand up in objection to the new idea. To be sure, change should always be envisioned but it needs to be viewed very carefully. As it now stands, there should be serious support for the concept of "if it ain't broke, don't break it".

Phil Susag more than 5 years ago

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Notable Quotes

"Harsh and direct disagreement places thought under pressure. That’s its point. Pressure can be intellectually productive: being forced to look closely at arguments against a beloved position helps those who hold it to burnish and buttress it as often as it moves them to abandon it. But pressure also causes pain and fear; and when those under pressure find these things difficult to bear, they’ll sometimes use any means possible to make the pressure and the pain go away. They feel unsafe, threatened, put upon, and so they react by deploying the soft violence of the law or the harder violence of the aggressive and speech-denying protest. Both moves are common enough in our élite universities now, as is their support by the powers that be. Tolerance for intellectual pain is less than it was. So is tolerance for argument."

– Paul Griffiths, former professor of Catholic theology at United Methodist-related Duke University Divinity School, in an article for Commonweal magazine on why he resigned over a recent conflict with a colleague related to racism training.


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