Regarding “A Way Forward” on sexuality
and The United Methodist Church.
The United Methodist Church has been struggling with questions related to human sexuality since its inception in 1968. How we are to live Jesus’ commandment to love one another, while also holding one another responsible in our moral and ethical living? Debates call into question the Church’s established laws restricting the marrying and ordaining of individuals who are actively homosexual.
Calls to change church law have repeatedly come up over the past forty-two years. The call will come again in February 2019. The difference this time will be the presentation of plans for “a way forward” that will be presented and voted on.
Pastor Bob held an information and holy conversation session related to these plans. Slides that supported the session are included here.
As you read through these slides, please email Pastor Bob any questions or thoughts that you have.
Pastor Bob will be hosting Scripture-based discussion sessions on this subject very soon. Please watch this page for more information.
Finally, Pastor Bob calls us all to be in prayer and to read the book, The Anatomy of Peace, by The Arbinger Institute. Copies will be available at the church for loan shortly. And most importantly, let us remember that our gay sisters and brothers are always welcome in our church, at the Lord’s Table, and are invited to share in his baptism as one with us in the body of Christ.
Saturday October 27 - Trunk or Treat - 4:00 - 6:00 PM
Wednesday November 14 - 6:00 PM
Covenant Disciple Groups
Have you ever felt the need to stretch the daily living out of your faith and at the same time deepen your relationship with God and your fellow Christians? Consider joining a Covenant Disciple Group. Following the example of early Methodist class meetings, Covenant Disciple groups are a way for Christians to deepen their faith by living it fully. Covenant groups meet weekly to "watch over one another in love." Based on Wesley's class meetings, the group writes their own covenants in four areas: acts of compassion, acts of justice, acts of devotion, and acts of worship. Once the group has brainstormed a list of ideas under each category, they then narrow it down to 2 covenants from each category. Covenant groups then meet once a week for no more than 1 hour. The format of the hour starts with an opening prayer. A member of the group then facilitates the conversation by asking each member how they met (or didn't meet) each of the covenants. It is not meant to be a "gotcha" conversation but rather, a way of helping each group member live out their faith privately and publicly through Works of Mercy (compassion and justice) and Works of Piety (devotion and worship). Covenants are meant to be practicable and attainable for each member. For example, in Acts of Compassion, a practicable covenant might be "to be present for someone in our paths who may look different from us" rather than "I will live as a homeless person to better understand how they cope." A Covenant group does require a commitment. Members commit to attend weekly and hold one another accountable to the group generated covenants. Covenant groups usually have 6 or 7 members and group members agree to confidentiality.
If you would like more information, see me this Sunday after the 10AM service or feel free to contact me via email: email@example.com
. A group has started the covenant process so if you would like to join us.
As you can imagine, Covenant groups develop a close bond with one another. I have been in Covenant groups in two churches and the group members became my sisters in Christ - and it was a blessing!
If you are interested, there is a resource available: Covenant Discipleship: Christian Formation Through Mutual Accountability by David Lowes Watson.