What Loving LGBTQ Ministry Could Look Like

By Thomas Lambrecht – At the St. Louis General Conference and since, conservatives have often been accused of being hateful, bigoted, and punitive toward LGBTQ persons. We frequently hear quoted “Do no harm!” and “Love your neighbor!” These statements are aimed at the traditional view that marriage is between one man and one woman and […]

Progress Report on Annual Conference Actions

By Thomas Lambrecht – We are halfway through the U.S. annual conference season. Annual conferences represent local churches and clergy in regional areas of the country. There are currently 55 annual conferences in the U.S. As of Friday, 29 of those annual conferences have met. Several of the annual conferences have passed resolutions opposing the […]

Rejoinder to Rebekah Miles

By Thomas Lambrecht – The Rev. Dr. Rebekah Miles recently invited her readers to join her going down the “rabbit hole” into the “Alice in Wonderland” that is currently The United Methodist Church. The point of her post is to critique elements of the Traditional Plan and encourage her readers to worry about what it might […]

“UMC Next” Counters Traditional Plan

Bishop Sue Haupert-Johnson (North Georgia), Bishop Mike McKee (North Texas), the Rev. Adam Hamilton, senior minister of the Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, Kansas, and the Rev. Junius B. Dotson, General Secretary of the denomination’s Discipleship Ministries, were part of the convening team of a meeting organized to strategize its opposition to the Traditional […]

What Do Methodists Believe (Part II)

By Thomas Lambrecht – A recent survey by United Methodist Communications indicated 44 percent of grassroots United Methodists consider themselves theologically conservative/traditional. At the same time, 28 percent identified as moderate/centrist and 20 percent as progressive/liberal. In a previous blog, I examined the implications of this finding. Last week I delved more deeply into specific beliefs United Methodists hold about […]

Let’s Not Repeat St. Louis

By Rob Renfroe – General Conference 2020 is less than a year away. There is much work to do if we are to avoid a repeat of St. Louis when we gather in Minneapolis. Legislation that can end our fighting needs to be written in the next few months to be properly before the Conference. […]

Global Church Wrestles with Post GC2019 Pain

By Heather Hahn – About a month after the special General Conference, United Methodist leaders from Austria to Zimbabwe were still reckoning with what happened and expressing pain all around. Members of four denominational leadership bodies took time out of a joint meeting in Manila, Philippines, to plan 2020 General Conference legislation to discuss what […]

Shepherd to the Fringes

By Steve Beard – “Jesus was not crucified in a cathedral between two candles, but on a cross between two thieves; on the town’s garbage heap; at a crossroad so cosmopolitan that they had to write His title in Hebrew and Latin and Greek … at the kind of place where cynics talk smut, and […]

Beauty from Ashes

By Shannon Vowell – Tragic events just days apart infused Holy Week with grief this year. The Monday after Palm Sunday, Notre Dame de Paris – fabled icon of Gothic architecture, French history, and Catholic identity – burned … as a global audience of millions watched and wept. Then, Easter Sunday, carefully coordinated terrorist attacks […]

Obsessed with the Resurrection

By Kenneth Tanner – A great befuddlement befalls some intelligent Christians when it comes to the definition of resurrection. On Holy Saturday the New York Times published an interview with the president of Union Theological Seminary in which she mentioned Christian “obsession” with the physicality of our Lord’s resurrection. Count me among the obsessed. There […]