Not the Centrist and Progressive Views I Know

A Response to Thomas Lambrecht’s 'Primary Reasons for Separation'



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"Breakdown of Church's Governance". We can argue about theological beliefs and the UMC can continue. But when clergy make a profession at their ordination that they understand how the UMC is designed to work and are willing to abide by its decision making processes and then refuse to do so, then we are done because we have absolutely no way to function going forward. General Conference is now an expensive exercise in futility if people can pick and choose what they will and will not abide by. Not to mention, just exactly where is the trust going forward when leadership has shown they are not willing to abide by the decision making process they clearly promised to abide by? And this duplicity is not stopping with the sexuality question, it has now spread to two other issues: Israel and termination of association with the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice/aka abortion. There is no "together" when everybody is free to do as they see fit; which is exactly where the church is headed.

Ultimately, it is the laity that is determining the future of the UMC--and we are leaving.

betsy 343 days ago

Breakdown of church's governance /reply to Betsy' comment

Thank you for your cogent remarks, Betsy. I always appreciate your Christian witness and your insights! You are correct - the laity is determining the future of the UMC. I have been very vocal in my email remarks to the COB, but never receive any response from them. Maybe they will start being responsive to the laity when a split becomes a real possibility. After 60 years as a member, I am sickened by the blatant political divide in our denomination. But I've always stated that I am a Christian first and a Methodist second. God will lead me onto the path that I am to follow in the future.

CJ Rose 343 days ago

Hamilton's Article A Response to Thomas Lambrecht

Response to Adam Hamilton's article - Brother Adam: Usually, I just read your articles and give you a pass. But not this time. I have grown tired of Centrists lambasting the evangelical/conservative branch of the UMC for so-called discrimination against our gay brothers/sisters/siblings (whom we love). The separation movement is not about "the practice of homosexuality". The split is about whether the UMC is a secular social services agency VS a movement for the continued advocacy of saving souls for the kingdom of God. If we are to be fishers of men (and women) and be disciples of Jesus who want transformation of the world for Christ, we need to be more like our brothers and sisters in Africa whose evangelical enthusiasm is a shining example for our US churches. As a long time UMC member (60 years, a graduate of a UMC affiliated university and a lifelong advocate of human rights), I am very involved in social service activities. But my primary focus is on evangelism. It is my opinion that saved souls will become social service advocates. But the current UMC leadership doesn't seem to be interested in focusing on evangelism. When was the last time you observed an altar call or heard the words, heaven, hell, Satan from a UMC pulpit? I saw/heard these recently - but at a Black Baptist Church service! I taught at a Black/Hispanic Historic college for thirty years and spent much of my time assisting with campus ministry programs. Those college students were hungry for the word of God and wanted answers to questions about injustice in the world. Their evangelism was supplemented by their social service advocacy! But the current UMC leadership seems to emphasize social services work instead of saving souls as a primary focus. This a cart before the horse approach!
The bottom line is whether the UMC leadership is going to allow the extremist fringe to take over the leadership of our denomination. That is why there is an almost certain split in our future. I estimate that at least half of the current UMC membership will align with the evangelical/conservative movement. UMC members want evangelism to be our main focus as demonstrated in the Wesley tradition. May God guide us forward during this next year of further questioning and decision making!

CJ Rose 344 days ago