How to Pave "A Way Forward"
Please join us for “A Way Forward for Grace,” conversations regarding Grace’s response to the issue of inclusion and the United Methodist Church. We will meet September 30, October 30, December 2 and January 23. Please see the calendar for details.
Reconciling Ministry Network churches and their allies met in St. Louis, MO to offer mutual care and to strategize prior to the February 2019 called General Conference of the United Methodist Church. (I encourage you to read Heather Hahn's thorough review of the weekend in UM News, at https://www.umnews.org/en/news/lgbtq-advocates-conflicted-on-way-forward.) So now, it's time for the local church to begin preparing for ways to care for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning, Intersex, Asexual + folks in new and more inclusive ways.
Here are some suggestions about what we can do to forward full inclusion of LGBTQIA+ persons in the United Methodist Church:
Understand and critique the costs and benefits of the "One Church" plan. That, and the other plans, are fully expressed in the report by The Way Forward Commission, available here: Final Report of A Way Forward Commission
Join Grace’s conversations on A Way Forward. You may find information about those gatherings here.
Contact Bishop Michael McKee and the delegates to General Conference: Thank them for their support of the One Church plan, if you think it's worth supporting; ask them for more public support for LGBTQIA+ folks, in their pastoral care and advocacy. They are:
Clergy Delegates to General Conference
Jan Davis, First UMC Rowlett
Clayton Oliphint, First UMC Richardson
Jill-Jackson Sears, Lake Highlands UMC, Dallas
Dr. Ronald Henderson, North Central District Superintendent
Don Underwood, Christ UMC, Plano
Lay Delegates to General Conference
Tim Crouch, First UMC Denton
Linda Parks, Northwest District
Kelly Carpenter, Lovers Lane UMC, Dallas
Ricky Harrison, First UMC Richardson
Richard Hearne, University Park UMC, Dallas
You may contact them c/o 500 Maplelawn Dr, Plano, TX 75075
Become an at-large member of the Annual Conference 2019, in order to elect supportive delegates to General Conference in 2020. That means attending Annual Conference for 2 1/2 days in June, and voting for folks who will support full inclusion of LGBTQIA+ folks in the UMC. Interested? Please let me know!
Attend the called General Conference in St Louis--February 23-26, 2019. A presence of loving hospitality will be a powerful witness to the church.