Upper New York Districts Gather for Conference Livestream Event

Upper New York for Full Inclusion

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upper New York districts

This response argues eloquently for a gracious and mutually affirming parting, far preferred to a mud wrestling rematch in Minneapolis. Two reasons. First, once selective obedience is blessed when done for Christian conscience's sake, a precedent is set not limited to one's preferential issue. Withholding and redirecting apportionments for conscience's sake, setting up a new church in an existing church's back yard for conscience's sake, etc...the unintended consequence is slow collapse of any coherent connection. Second, our challenges are far more than sexuality. Nearly every pastor at these events, regardless of their stand on gay marriage, lead churches in decline. The Western Jurisdiction has ignored the prohibitions on gay marriage-sexually active gay clergy for years and lead the denomination in decline...for reasons we ALL share and are far beyond this one issue. Until we embrace the entire challenge of outdated structures, obsolete placement of many churches, inconsistent expectations/training of leaders, finance-demographic-theological-trust issues (among others), decline continues regardless of keeping or changing sexuality policy. Hopefully GC2020 will recognize this well in advance and push the re-set button that allows center/left and center/right UMs to share fully our collective Wesleyan DNA while revising, scrapping, retooling the entire theological octopus which is the existing UMC...and Bishop Webb, like the other bishops, is not the villain for this far wider problem.

Bob 27 days ago