Where do Progressives Go If the #UMC Turns Against Them?



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And to be even clearer

Just as there is no such thing as Methodism with a “progressive edge” there is also no such thing as Methodism with a “conservative fundamentalism edge”. There is only Methodism that enables a person to work out their salvation in the wide open space of God’s amazing grace within the context of social holiness. Social holiness is not social justice; rather it is a person working out their own salvation in the company of others who are doing the same.

Betsy more than 5 years ago

Where to go

I have always identified myself (whenever it seems to be necessary to pigeon-hole myself at all) as a progressive evangelical Christian, where evangelical means one who spreads the Good News. For me that means sharing the news of salvation through faith in the Grace of God as expressed in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, empowering us through the Holy Spirit to share the Love of the one who created us, redeemed us and sanctifies us. The concrete meaning of that is that we follow Jesus in his love for God and the world. That love is to sacrifice for others, to free the oppressed, to help the poor, heal the sick, to care those who are too often dismissed or left out. That is the long way of saying that when it comes down to it, I cannot separate myself from being either evangelical or progressive because I understand both to be an essential part of who I am. The status of the UMC these days does leave me in a bit of a dilemma. Where, indeed, can I go? I hope to stay but if that is not possible, what then? The Unitarians? But I am a Trinitarian. The Presbyterians? I am not Calvinist, etc. I am a Methodist by belief and United by temperament. It is difficult for to me imagine myself anywhere else. If I am cast out, so be it but until then, here I stand.

Cherie Boeneman more than 5 years ago

Social Holiness

The commentators thus far seem to assume that progressive Methodists do not start with themselves. I would hazard a guess to say most progressive Methodists have started from amuch more traditional place and have engaged in profound soul seatching that lead them to their crrent convicrions. Secondly, they seem to assume that the Wesleys did not seek to change society as part of their mission of spreading holiness across the land. The most obvious examole of their opposition to slavery and therumtrade seems to have been overlooked. The Wesleys were not advocates of orivate piety divorced from social holiness. Progressive Methodists havea goodly heritage going back to the Wesleys. The Methodist involvement in the Abolitionist movement, the Suffragist movement snf Tempersnce and Social Welfare snd Social Just endeavors are not aberrations but rather exoressions of Wesleyan convictions that John Wesley
found consistent with the scriptures. Only a myopic reading of scriture focused on proof texting opposition to homosexuslity could miss the strong themes of social justice to be found in the Hebrew Scriptures and the Gosoels so it is evident to any unbiased reader that Weskey did nothing more than to assert the same snd that Orogressive Methodism is not an invention of Modernists but a genuine exoression of early Methodism and the rafical faith ecpressed in the Bible.

Sarah Flynn more than 5 years ago

Terms of Equality

People seek "equality" for what seems right to them. But what about “what is right” in God's eyes?

Honor God with your body. Your body is a sacred dwelling place of the Holy Spirit. I Corinthians 6:19-20

Skipper Anding more than 5 years ago

If you want to reform the UMC

You want a truly Wesleyan perspective then please start where John Wesley started: with himself. Wesley never intentionally set out to reform anything but his own life. His quest to understand what it meant for him to live a life centered in God 24/7 is what led him to unexpected places including the launch of Methodism. The hard reality is what you are running up against is an attempt by others to regain the truly Wesleyan perspective the Methodist/United Methodist Church began drifting from over 100 years ago! There is no such thing as Methodism with a "progressive edge". Currently the only thing left of the Wesleyan perspective is itinerant pastors and our sense of being "connected". Neither one of those is enough to keep us truly connected with authentic unity. Right now, the UMC is a house divided against itself putting out different messages that totally contradict and cancel each other out. A person outside of the American UMC stated the reason why church in America has become incomprehensible to others; it is because church has become incomprehensible to itself. With its conflicting and contradictory messages, there is no church more incomprehensible to anybody than The United Methodist Church. The person went on to say the reason the church has become incomprehensible is that it is doing everything except what it should be doing: connecting individuals to God and then to each other in a life transforming relationship. Wow! What a concept! That was the Priority #1 John Wesley never ever waivered from! And Wesley always started with a specific message: God is God and we are not; and we should not jeopardize our own salvation by claiming any righteousness other that what God has provided through the life, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ! The true Wesleyan perspective is not about us changing the world, but God changing us into the truly human persons God planned for us to be before we took control of the situation. Wesley changed the world by creating a space where God transformed whole communities one person at a time! And it all started with his desire to submit his own life to God. And as far as the church turning against progressives? As far as I am concerned progressives have already turned against the church with their disobedience. And the sad thing is I know for a fact that our perspectives are so different, you absolutely do not understand why I feel that way.

Betsy more than 5 years ago

Where do progressives go

The answer is obvious. They can go anywhere they choose. I am under no obligation to advise them, not that they would listen to me anyway.

Kevin more than 5 years ago