“Mainstream UMC” Caucus Distorts Again

By Tom Lambrecht – The special-interest “centrist” caucus group known as “Mainstream UMC” is running a campaign to show that “harm” is being inflicted on LGBT persons in our United Methodist Church by our accountability process and to call for an end to trials. The campaign rings hollow when the whole story is told. Part […]

Will the UM Church Be the First?

By Tom Lambrecht – Over the last 20 years, I have witnessed friends and colleagues in other mainline denominations struggling with principled disagreements over the definition of marriage and the role of LGBTQ persons in the church. It was always clear to me that these other denominations were just a few years ahead of where […]

Reading Scripture: Skepticism, Suspicion, and Trust

By David F. Watson – Last semester I taught a class called Wesleyan Biblical Interpretation. We read a considerable number of Wesley’s writings along with a couple of secondary texts. Rereading these primary and secondary sources led me to ponder anew the vast differences between the way in which Wesley read the Bible and the […]

Indianapolis Plan Values Amicable Separation (Part II)

By Thomas Lambrecht – As noted last week, the conversation group working on the Indianapolis Plan has come to agreement and submitted the final version of a plan for an amicable separation in The United Methodist Church. You can read the first part of my analysis of the plan here. This plan (of which I am one of the […]

Indianapolis Plan Values Amicable Separation (Part I)

By Tom Lambrecht – The conversation group working on the Indianapolis Plan has come to agreement and submitted the final version of a plan for an amicable separation in The United Methodist Church. As the document states, “We seek to move away from the caustic atmosphere which has often marked conversation in the United Methodist […]

As We Pray, So We Believe

By David F. Watson – Many have noted that what we call “contemporary” worship isn’t so contemporary anymore. It’s a feature of the “attractional” model of church growth, embodied so well in Willow Creek and like-minded megachurches that popped up in the 80’s and 90’s. The basic philosophy of the attractional model is that if […]

Top Priority

By Tom Lambrecht – As I participate in conversations around the church seeking a way to resolve the crisis facing The United Methodist Church, I have become aware that different people have different goals. A person’s top priority will affect how they evaluate a particular plan or strategy that is proposed to move our church […]

Dissolution or Separation?

By Thomas Lambrecht – The deadline for submitting petitions to General Conference 2020 is less than three weeks away. So far, three major plans for “separation” have been released. More are in the works. The UMC Next Plan proposes to remove all the restrictions in the Book of Discipline regarding clergy performing same-sex weddings and self-avowed practicing […]

Who Do You Love?

By Dr. David F. Watson – A long time ago I taught in a community college. One of the courses I taught was Major World Religions. One day I was giving a final exam — back in days when we used blue books — and as we were beginning one of the students asked me, […]

Annual Conferences, Statistics, and “Winner Take All”

By Chappell Temple – He attributed the phrase to Benjamin Disraeli, but you won’t actually find it in any of his works. But in speaking to the power of numbers to bolster an otherwise weak argument, Mark Twain was probably correct to say that there are three kinds of untruths: “lies, damn lies, and statistics.” […]