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Methodist court leaves teaching against same-sex relationships in place

Methodist court leaves teaching against same-sex relationships in place

Renee K. Gadoua of Religion News Service reports:

The United Methodist Church’s highest court issued three rulings this weekend that do not change church policy toward gays and lesbians but allow bishops to accept resolutions expressing dissent from church teachings.


The Judicial Council affirmed a resolution approved by New York Bishop Martin McLee that celebrates congregations and individuals that “provide for the pastoral needs of same-sex couples within the United Methodist Church.”

It said that the resolution is “aspirational,” and does not call for action that contradicts the Book of Discipline, the United Methodist book of doctrine and laws, which defines homosexual conduct as “incompatible with Christian teaching.”

Disappointing.

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Beth Beyer Abbott

I am wondering what their definition of “provide for the needs” means. Just two weeks ago, a letter was sent out by Bishop Peggy Johnson to our region stating that if anyone is ordained by another denomination they must be removed from membership by their congregation. As a spiritual director who is ordained by the Progressive Christian Alliance (and proud of it!) this leaves me feeling excluded by the denomination where I have been a member for close to 60 years. If I am removed from membership, it excludes me from voting or holding a position of leadership. Not sure what to think. Not feeling “open hearts, open hands, open doors” should be the UMC tagline.

Paul Woodrum

If churches move forward with the light God gives them, why don’t the Methodists check the setting on their dimmer switch?

Brian Kneeland

It is a slight shift – more than some churches are willing to do – being open to everyone means some may be uncomfortable at times – but they learn. I served on a panel for the Presbyterian Church USA (and am not Presbyterian) because I could articulate a theology that was open to inclusivity of homosexuals. It was interesting to hear the responses as people learned that gays are humans just like them and what discrimination was like. Any move forward is a move. They need to keep the momentum going!

Jesse Snider

I agree it’s disappointing but I’m encouraged that it leaves the door open for ‘possibilites’. We move forward with the light God gives us. Thank God the UM court left the door open to ‘possiblities’

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