Author Topic: United Methodist Church policy  (Read 935 times)

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Offline Billzbub

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United Methodist Church policy
« on: March 07, 2019, 11:19:26 AM »
The United Methodist Church had a General Conference at the end of February where they voted for a "Traditional Plan" that says openly gay people cannot serve as clergy and that clergy cannot perform gay marriages.  I looked for a good news article to link, but in the end, I suggest you just google "United Methodist Church General Conference" and pick whatever news source you like.

I am bringing this up because I have many Facebook friends who are Methodists, and they are all really upset about this.  Every time I see a post from one of them how they think the decisions is wrong, I want to point out that the feeling they are experiencing is cognitive dissonance between their belief that their religion is based on inclusion and love, and the text of their religion which is clearly not.

I wonder if this situation will force a decent number of Christians to face the fact that Christianity is actually at odds with their own personally feelings.
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Offline Shibboleth

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2019, 12:00:28 PM »
While I agree that Christianity is lacking when it comes to love for all this has more to do with evangelical Church policy than dogma. They could join another church such as forms of Lutheranism that allow for gay clergy. John Wesley was a pretty conservative guy. I am actually surprised at how liberal Methodism has been over the years.
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Offline Ah.hell

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2019, 12:52:37 PM »
Meh, this actually fairly minor dissonance given some of the things christian's are able to rationalize.   

Offline Billzbub

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2019, 01:04:41 PM »
While I agree that Christianity is lacking when it comes to love for all this has more to do with evangelical Church policy than dogma. They could join another church such as forms of Lutheranism that allow for gay clergy. John Wesley was a pretty conservative guy. I am actually surprised at how liberal Methodism has been over the years.

The UMC never struck me as particularly evangelical, but maybe the churches I've experienced are out-of-line with their headquarters or something.

When you say "They could join another church", the thing is that whole churches and even regions are so upset about this that they are flat out refusing to go along with the ruling.  Of course an individual can change churches, but I think it is a whole other level when a church or a region wants to change denominations or even just separate themselves from the mother organization that funds the whole operation.
Quote from: Steven Novella
gleefully altering one’s beliefs to accommodate new information should be a badge of honor

Offline Billzbub

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2019, 01:05:35 PM »
Meh, this actually fairly minor dissonance given some of the things christian's are able to rationalize.   

While that is true, I think this one is really hitting them in the feels.
Quote from: Steven Novella
gleefully altering one’s beliefs to accommodate new information should be a badge of honor

Offline daniel1948

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2019, 05:23:45 PM »
There was a brief period some 15 or 20 years ago when, in an entirely unsuccessful attempt to recruit people into the peace movement, I went to a lot of different churches. Some I only visited once because they were obviously not interested in opposing war. Others I attended for a while. There was one that stood out (though I didn't get any peace activist recruits). The Congregational United Church of Christ was performing (not legally binding) gay marriages, and had gay pastors of all genders. During the first Gulf war the head minister there was delivering strong anti-war sermons. Not just "We pray for peace," but "This war is wrong!"

Of course the Unitarian Universalists are a welcoming church, but they're not really a religion. There are religious people among them, but the church itself doesn't have a religion.

Anyway, the Congregational UCC were pretty cool. I'd say if you are into Christianity and are looking for a sect that's not homophobic, you might want to check them out.

I didn't like the way they indoctrinated little kids into the Cult of Jesus, though.
Daniel
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Offline Desert Fox

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2019, 05:52:45 PM »
I have heard that it is quite likely that the United Methodists will split over this issue with more liberal churches not being very happy. It is suggested that the African churches are responsible for the ruling.
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Offline Mr. Beagle

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #7 on: March 08, 2019, 12:18:41 PM »
I have heard that it is quite likely that the United Methodists will split over this issue with more liberal churches not being very happy. It is suggested that the African churches are responsible for the ruling.

Churches have two options here: (1) Open up to more diverse membership, and then lose conservative members who go elsewhere or take out their individual congregations (the US Episcopalians did this) or (2) Keep it closed and lose families and friends of LGBT people (the route the Methodists have taken)

In general the "mainstream" denominations will bleed members either way, like the Anglican Church in England, leaving empty buildings behind. I know some good folks in the Methodist church and their seminary in Kansas City was once a progressive bastion. It has since fallen on hard times.

Interesting things are happening with the Mormons. A group now numbering 250,000 or so worldwide that split away over polygamy and secret temple ceremonies in the 1850s, now called the Community of Christ, has since taken a more progressive stance. They started ordaining women in 1984, which caused thousands to leave. By the time they got around to ordaining LGBT people a few years ago, there was less defection because those folks had mostly left. This church are now seeing an influx of LGBT Mormons and their families:

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/oct/01/women-lgbt-mormons-community-of-christ

Which is not to say that the Community of Christ is healthy. Unfortunately, the intolerant churches attract more people these days.
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Offline Desert Fox

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2019, 03:37:04 PM »
Which is not to say that the Community of Christ is healthy. Unfortunately, the intolerant churches attract more people these days.

Within the last couple of years they sold some Joseph Smith stuff to the Utah Mormon Church for some cash.

Still, isn't it sad how hate sells.
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Offline PANTS!

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2019, 10:09:52 AM »
Back when I was a Methodist they were the even keeled, not-evangelical, not-liberal denomination.  Their stance on homosexuality back then was mainly indifference - not the best, but not bad for the 80s.  Not sure what happened, but they really have shit the bed.
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Offline Desert Fox

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2019, 02:16:05 PM »
Back when I was a Methodist they were the even keeled, not-evangelical, not-liberal denomination.  Their stance on homosexuality back then was mainly indifference - not the best, but not bad for the 80s.  Not sure what happened, but they really have shit the bed.

African churches
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Offline gebobs

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #11 on: March 25, 2019, 05:07:02 PM »
St. Mark's Methodist in Atlanta disagrees...


Offline Shibboleth

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2019, 12:46:12 PM »
While I agree that Christianity is lacking when it comes to love for all this has more to do with evangelical Church policy than dogma. They could join another church such as forms of Lutheranism that allow for gay clergy. John Wesley was a pretty conservative guy. I am actually surprised at how liberal Methodism has been over the years.

The UMC never struck me as particularly evangelical, but maybe the churches I've experienced are out-of-line with their headquarters or something.

It depends on how you define evangelical I guess. John Wesley was certainly part of the evangelical movement and he is often referred to as Wesley the Evangelist.
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Offline 2397

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2019, 01:18:57 PM »
I hope that all who disagree leave the church/take their church out of it, etc. It's either that or change the leadership, which might be more complicated than simply being free from them.

Offline Desert Fox

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Re: United Methodist Church policy
« Reply #14 on: March 28, 2019, 02:41:54 PM »
It depends on how you define evangelical I guess. John Wesley was certainly part of the evangelical movement and he is often referred to as Wesley the Evangelist.

Churches evolve even if they will not admit it
"Give me the storm and tempest of thought and action, rather than the dead calm of ignorance and faith. Banish me from Eden when you will; but first let me eat of the fruit of the tree of knowledge."
— Robert G. Ingersoll

 

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