For the Protocol, Which Comes First: the UMC Chicken or the WCA Egg?



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Protocol Must Pass First

Once the legislation for the Protocol has been worked out, it is imperative that the "Protocol" pass with all the support it needs. There should be rules that once the WCA has been approved to leave the denomination, then those delegates may no longer vote on future legislative matters. They have agreed to form their own denomination. There may be a ceremony or sending off of those delegates who choose to join them. The Protocol states that other conferences have time to decide whether or not to leave. Some can wait until they see what the changes are to the BoD. The important thing is to minimize the influence that the Traditionalists as a body have on rest of the Legislation that could hurt the remaining UMC. It's too bad that this has become explained as a war between "those who follow scripture" and those who "disregard scripture" because that is an unfair and harmful description of why our beliefs differ. I believe we differ in our understanding of who God is and who God loves and how we should love our neighbors. It is directly from Jesus' teachings and based on scripture. It is not my place to judge those whom God loves and has called to do God's will. If Christ is living in me, I love everyone, no exceptions.

Jean Weller 7 days ago


Mr. Smith speaks of the lack of trust among the factions within the UMC. How does it help build trust when the author characterizes the consistent upholding of traditional understandings of scripture and doctrine as "anti-gay caucuses that ruined the UM Church for everyone"? Can you really blame the same majority voting results in 12 consecutive General Conferences on a caucus? Is it really impossible to see and admit that the changes progressives are wanting are still a minority view, at least in the world-wide church?
It seems to me that if we are ever to find any resolution to all of this conflict, we must acknowledge the possibility that those with whom we disagree completely may still be people of good will. That goes for both sides, but this article is the one that caught my attention this day.

Bruce Hiner 11 days ago

the Protocol must come first

The Protocol must be approved first. Until there is a clear exit path for traditionalists, what reasonable choice do they have but to continue to exert their clout within the existing structure of the church? Once the way is clear for the formation of a new Wesleyan denomination true to Scriptural primacy, surely some delegates will be willing to sit out later votes as having nothing to do with their future. For the one-quarter to one-third of U. S. delegates who will be voting as traditionalists, only a relative handful of abstentions should be enough to allow the progressive caucus to carry the day on further legislation. In fact, as a “marketing boon,” letting the rump UMC rush headlong into their desired worldly remake of the church will be the best marketing tool for the nascent traditionalist denomination and lead to a rush to the WCA exit for traditionalists. It would be too much to expect the central conference delegates to abstain, as it is less than clear where their future will be within larger Methodism. And if the current standards do happen to remain in effect, what difference would it make after the traditionalists leave? If the Discipline were being upheld, we would not be at this impasse to begin with. The progressive wing of the church has for years now demonstrated its utter contempt for adhering to the doctrines and order of the church, so continued flagrant violation of the Discipline would be expected until the desired changes were made at the next general conference.

As for the trust issue, the prior sentence needs little elaboration. Trust is built upon integrity. A sizable minority of bishops and elders have quite brazenly violated their solemn oaths to uphold the doctrines, order and discipline of the church, so how could they be trusted with implementation of or support for the Protocol after they get their way on the issues most dear to them?

Mark 12 days ago

Moving On Regardless

As an older lay person, this is the last few months that I will participate in this lofty chatter. If a resolution is not reached by the end of the 2020 GC, then I will join the multitude that abandons this vessel that is becoming a submarine approaching crush depth.

Bill Bond 10 days ago

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