Many of you are familiar with the struggle happening within the United Methodist Church regarding the Church’s stance on the issue of human sexuality. The struggle to find common ground has been a major part of the discussions taking place at General Conference since 1972.
This past General Conference (2016), the Conference asked the Council of Bishops to lead in a new and different way to break a stalemate and attempt to heal the deep division that has occurred in our family of faith. The Council of Bishops created a 32-member task force called the Commission on a Way Forward. The purpose of the Commission was to completely examine and recommend revisions of every paragraph in the Book of Discipline concerning human sexuality and to explore options that help to maintain and strengthen the unity of the church.
Our Bishop, Scott Jones, visited every district to share information regarding the report of the Commission as well as information about the upcoming special session of the General Conference to be held in St. Louis in February 2019. You can watch a video of one of the Table Talk sessions as well as read documents regarding the work of the Commission at www.txcumc.org/thewayforward.
Many of our church members were not able to attend one of those informational sessions; consequently, many of our folks do not understand all aspects of the Commission on the Way Forward. Many might still be confused by the process, the plans that were given to the Bishops, and the next steps for the Church. We have arranged for Leah Taylor, former Lay Leader of the Texas Annual Conference and member of the Commission on the Way Forward, to be the speaker at our next Quarterly Conference. We will meet on October 7th at 5:30 PM in the Fellowship Hall for a snack supper followed by a presentation given by Mrs. Taylor.
Our time together will be one of information and not a debate on the issue. It is our way of ensuring that you are hearing the facts and not opinions surrounding this sensitive issue. As I stated before, the day-to-day practice of ministry continues, and we will continue to fulfill the mission of our church regardless of denominational disputes. We will continue to welcome all people and make disciples for the transformation of the world.
Please feel free to contact me for more information…