Getting ready for what The United Methodist Church decides about human sexuality and church policy.
Saturday, May 19, 2018
This event is free.
Please rsvp using the sign-up sheet in the church office or Click Here to use the online rsvp form.
In early May, the Commission on a Way Forward submitted its recommendations to the Council of Bishops of the United Methodist Church. (Scroll down to read more about the decision from the Council of Bishops and work of The Commission on a Way Forward.) In February 2019, the General Conference of the church will meet in special session to consider these recommendations and make a decision about how The United Methodist Church will structure language in our Book of Disciple and update policies for United Methodist churches.
How do we at St. Paul’s get ready for what the United Methodist Church decides about human sexuality?
All adults and youth are invited to attend the workshop "A Way Forward at St. Paul's" on Saturday afternoon, May 19. We will learn together, think, and talk together. Along with this food for thought, there will also be food for the tummies. First and last, we will pray together.
Our objective: To explore how our St. Paul’s congregation might address the United Methodist Church’s forthcoming decisions (not yet known) regarding sexual orientation and homosexuality.
What we plan to do at the workshop:
• We will eat lunch.
• We will briefly review what The United Methodist Church is doing about these decisions.
• Then in small groups and as a whole we will explore questions that are close to home:
- What do individuals or groups of members at St. Paul’s believe, as Christians and United Methodists, about God, Biblical authority, sin, grace, inherent human worth, church connections, and inclusivity?
- Among these beliefs, which ones would all of us at St. Paul’s agree on? In other words, what is the shared bedrock of our faith in this congregation?
- What issues concerning human sexuality and our church might members of St. Paul’s disagree about? Perhaps explicit outreach to the LGBT community? Marriage sacraments performed in our church? The sexual orientation of our ministers?
- Of the different ways decisions can be made at St. Paul’s, what might be a good way to proceed when choices related to the Way Forward Commission's work may be presented to us over the next year?
Although some individuals may wish to express their own personal opinions about these questions, our emphasis will be on thinking and talking about the life of our congregation. This does not automatically require any one person to expose or advocate what “I think.”
Here are some goals we might accomplish by the end of the workshop:
• A sense of what beliefs unite all of us at St. Paul’s
• A clear-eyed view of what might separate our members on matters of sexuality
• How we at St. Paul's might respond to the results of the greater UMC's 2019 Special Session called to address sexuality and church policy
• A plausible Way Forward at St. Paul’s, whatever the greater church’s decisions
This event is FREE. Please RSVP to attend by signing up in the church office or online using the form available here.
If you have questions, comments, or ideas, please contact Bill Butz: email@example.com or phone 240-205-0964.