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August 29, 2013

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Discipline as Process

No Discipline is perfect or perfectible. I have serious concerns about a variety of our social stands (but these do change from time to time). I am equally or more concerned about a number of theological statements made in the Disicpline. Yet I support it. By this I mean that I support the process of conferencing, even when it is mean and stupid. We will have another Discipline in 2016. There the conferencing may be even more limiting as proposals are mandated to figure out more part of the Discipline "are not subject to change or adaptation." [¶101] This poses a grave threat to the process of Discipline development and in light of the limited wisdom of any given General Conference. Recent actions of which have been much less than stellar. I can't imagine good coming out of even more restrictive legislation that binds us to yesterday.

Wesley White more than 1 year ago

UPHOLDING THE DISCIPLINE

One seems to often have a narrow focus when it comes to upholding the Discipline. For instance, pastors are quickly brought upon charges while laypeople who come under the same trial directives are allowed to disrupt and kill the soul of our churches in violation of the Discipline. Pastors who do "same sex" weddings are brought up on charges, however, pastors who do weddings of heterosexual couples WITHOUT A VALID MARRIAGE LICENSE, in order that the couple NOT lose ther social security benefits are also in violation of the Discipline. I know of one clergy couple who recently performed a "wedding - covenant service" for a couple who got "married WITHOUT a wedding license. When I asked for a ruling from a General Church agency about this, I was told, the Wedding service is intended for use of heterosexual copies UNDER the laws of a state and with use of a valid marriage license. To do a covenant service for a HETEROSEXUAL COUPLE is as in violation of the Discipline and a chargeable offense, the same as doing a covenant service for same-sex couple.

Rev. Thomas L. Shanklin more than 1 year ago

Nice list-making

This is certainly the UMC equivalent of the much-touted response to the "clobber passages" in the Bible used to justify hatred against LGBTs, citing things like slavery, shrimp, and mensturation. The answer is, of course, the haters want to justify hate however they can. Our hateful sneering passage about how "homosexual practice" (for those who can't do it right, I reckon) is "incompatible with Christian teaching" is enough reason itself to wipe the dust from the feet and leave the UMC. But the animating contest of justice calls us back.

George N. Shuler, LCSW more than 1 year ago

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Notable Quotes

“We’ll have to see how gracious or vindictive voices within the LGBT community are in their responses (should the U.S. Supreme Court deliver a widely expected ruling legalizing same-sex marriage). Will they become a live-and-let-live movement or a stamp-out-dissent movement? If there’s respect, there’s likely to be less pushback from conservatives.”  – Ryan Anderson, Heritage Foundation Fellow commenting to Religion News Service.


"Politicians, adopting the rhetoric of their fundamentalist Christian constituencies, claim to revere the Bible but are clearly unaware of what it says, what it doesn’t say, or of the insights of those who study it seriously." – Peter Enns, commenting on Patheos about Newsweek's article on Biblical illiteracy.


“I just believe that God’s agenda has no gender." – Composer, singer and pastor Andrae Crouch in 1998 after he ordained his twin sister, Sandra Crouch, and named her co-pastor with him. Crouch died Jan. 8 of a heart attack at age 72.


“The Just Resolution Agreement achieved by the complainants and Bishop Talbert is a reminder that United Methodists don’t have to be divided by their differences. The conflicted parties came together, prayerfully listened to one another, challenged one another, and searched for God’s guidance for themselves and for the church.” – Bishop Elaine J.W. Stanovsky, in a statement announcing that Bishop Melvin G. Talbert won't face a church trial for officiating at a same-gender wedding of an Alabama gay couple.