Part 3 Order, Disorder and Reorder



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Anyone can disagree with anyone else and get along just fine. The real problem is in the unilateral actions contrary to our discipline which are going uncorrected. This is what is tearing apart our connection. Once we throw away the rules we have chaos. Disagreement is not the problem. Rule breaking is.

Kevin more than 5 years ago

Thank you for your comment

Kevin, we all throw away rules. We have ordained clergy persons who drink and gamble but we look aside. We all break the rules of Jesus everyday! It is not rule breaking that I see as the problem but disagreement on which rules we are comfortable breaking. Just like Jesus who got in spats with religious leaders of his time, they all were in a dispute on what rules were okay to break and what rules were not. Jesus broke many rules and yet did not desire to leave his faith tradition. Just as their are progressives who break rules there are conservatives who also break rules. It is a universal thing that we all deal with, can we all accept that we are breaking rules and trust we are all breaking them in good faith for the kingdom building in that current context?

Jason Valendy more than 5 years ago


Your equivalence argument doesn’t wash. If ministry boards are knowingly approving drunken gamblers then that is a problem. Our alleged acceptance of such candidates should not mean that we accept other flawed candidates. I do not see gamblers lobbying The UMC to accept their shortcomings and even sanctify their gambling or drinking. There are no communion tearing actions going on over these issues as there are with same sex marriage. I am gratified to see that you at least categorize homosexuality as sinful as you lump it in with all other sorts of behaviors we have come to accept. So why not one more? Because it is a deal breaker for too many of us. That is why. Man up and live by the rules we have collectively agreed upon. Don’t like the rules? Change them through our established procedures. Any other method is unethical, undermines our connection and prevents us from walking together.

Kevin more than 5 years ago

Thank you

It seems like my desire for reorder is not well communicated to others who may desire greater or renewed emphasis on order or disorder. I desire to better understand what you are saying but I think at this point I disagree with holding too tightly to order.
Thank you for giving me more to think about.

Jason more than 5 years ago

This is the part I don't understand

This is the part I can't grok: "Because it is a deal breaker for too many of us." Of so many points of contention, why does this particular issue arouse such emotional fervor? I understand World War II generation folks embraced heterosexism as it was conflated with anticommunism in the McCarthy Era. Some of this was passed on to my generation, the Baby Boomers, but it is much lessened in the generations which followed us. Every fundamentalist church seems to buy into institutionalized heterosexism, but they all have divorced-and-remarried heterosexuals sitting in their front pews. I've talked with some who have personalized some injustice perpetrated upon them by some LGBT person somewhere, but most just fear them as some unknown "other." In Edwin Markham's phrase, they drew a circle which shut them out. It is unfortunate, but it is our destiny to deal with these realities.

George Nixon Shuler more than 5 years ago