Will the Methodists learn from the Episcopals?

umc-cross.jpgI really hope they do.

Kudos to the local church that is leaving the Episcopal denomination.

From an “orthodox” point of view, [Rev.] Gerber said, “The culture has begun to influence the church, rather than the church influencing the culture.”

I wish them well and hope they thrive in their new surroundings.

Now if the Methodists could just learn from that.  In an interesting juxtaposition, the Houston Chronicle religion section highlighted the expected debates on homosexuality and abortion at the upcoming General conference on the same day they reported on the Episcopals. 

There won’t be consensus at the conference in the sense of harmony, but hopefully they will continue to have a large majority on the Biblical sides of these issues.  There are literally hundreds of petitions that propose to keep the stance on homosexual behavior and to get back to a Biblical model on abortion (including stopping all support for the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice). 

The Methodist stance on homosexual behavior is quite sound and balanced, but it is constantly attacked.  The protestors will be out in force again this year, making a nuisance of themselves and selfishly disrupting the procedures instead of following the proper process.  They are always trying to get themselves arrested so they can play the martyr card.

The denomination’s position on abortion is something only a committee could love. 

I’m really hoping that the attendees learn from the Episcopals and get more firm with this.  By extending the dialogue it gives false credibility to the bankrupt pro-gay theology.  We’d be doing everyone a favor by telling them to just move on and quit trying to destroy the denomination.  Or at least let them know that we’re tired of the bullying.  Either follow the established change process, or get arrested.  Yes, it will give them their TV sound bites but we can at least let the convention proceed in an orderly manner.

4 thoughts on “Will the Methodists learn from the Episcopals?”

  1. Certainly we could go back and forth regarding the merits of demonstrations (which I think is an acceptable means of expression), our differences regarding your understanding of the “bankrupt” pro-gay theology, as well as the need for the UMs to seriously consider removal from RCRC, but I’d just like to offer a prayer in hopes of a General Conference that seeks to do what God calls the delegates to do rather than a GC that is about the hardening of positions and hearts for self-eddification and fractionalism. I know it may be wishful thinking, but despite my sometimes cynical outlook and difference of opinion with my more conservative brothers and sisters, I generally am always hopeful. I love the church I belong to, with all its flaws and differences and so on. And I love the people in it (though at times that love is tested). The overwhelming majority of us are truly trying to live out God’s call of discipleship the best we can.

    Peace

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  2. Ben Witherington blogged about this too. I guess he’s a fellow Methodist like yourself. He wished the Methodist conference would attract an international subset of the methodist congregation to help get a cross-cultural look at various issues.

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  3. “The denomination’s position on abortion is something only a committee could love. ”

    LOL. That’s the best line I’ve read in a long time Neil!

    tr

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