7 Questions for Potential #UMC Schismatics

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Silly and superficial...

I remember a physics professor at Emory talking about red herrings and this is a prime example. The assumption is, the conservatives are leaving and there are places for them to go. The same point by point outline is also true of the radicals (progressives is a gross misuse of the term) and there are places for them to go. The radicals have, in fact, already left the covenant. You ask what we want; we want folks who obey the covenant they agreed to obey when they joined the church. And you observe the radicals are not wanting to leave? They have no reason to leave; they're using the UMC platform and money to promote their alternative lifestyle in direct opposition to the covenant they "promised" to obey.

Charles Whatley more than 1 year ago

Big Tent?

" I appreciate being part of a big tent denomination, large enough for you and the Pacific Northwest and everything in between."

A view from the pew: I spent a lifetime as a good church-going Methodist. I spent my entire adult life in one local UM church. I finally reached a point of brokenness that had began when a new pastor arrived on the scene who knew what needed to change in order to make the local church more acceptable to the masses. By the time the dust settled, I had been exposed to three successive pastors whose views of the church and the gospel could not have been more different. I literally felt like I had been flung from here to there to over yonder. I ultimately had to distance myself from all things church and began what turned out to be a journey of learning what all I did not know/understand about basic orthodox Christianity--in short, at age 59 I discovered the existence of a triune God of holy love who is most definitely way more verb than noun; an unfathomable God of mystery who is determined to love even me more than I could ever think about loving myself. In retrospect, I realize that prior to that I had spent a lot of time learning nothing much in particular except random sound bites that had no particular home in what was, for me, the puzzle of Christianity.

The point I am trying to make is that for such a system as the United Methodist Church which involves itinerating pastors, there has to be a common theology; big tent theology leaves the person in the pew lost and confused. Without "casting stones" as to the correctness of any particular theology even though I have found my home in basic orthodox Christianity, I truly believe there is no structure possible that could support the diverse theology that is currently rampant in the United Methodist Church. Currently the big push is to make disciples for the transformation of the world. Well, that has to start with a consensus of who God is and who we are as well as a consensus as to what it means to be a disciple as well as the church's role in relation to society. At the bottom of the same sex debate is there not only a glaring lack of consensus when it comes to those crucial things, but also when it comes to the role of General Conference and the Book of Discipline in the life of the church. How can any organization survive when it has no consensus as to who it is and what it needs to be doing? As far as I am concerned, the current amount of diversity present in the UMC is toxic and is in no way is helpful to the person in the pew who is trying to discern what it means to follow Jesus. And by no means is the diversity confined to specific geographical areas!

Orter T. more than 2 years ago

A view from the pew

I so totally agree with your observations. Our denomination is so all over the place trying to be everything to everybody that we don't know who we are. Believe what you say and say what you believe. I do know whose I am and I plan on standing on my beliefs. We have spent way too much time debating the human sexuality issue when we need to be about making disciples for Jesus Christ, feeding the hungry and conquering diseases like malaria.

Gene D Mims more than 2 years ago


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