UMQCC Response to Uniting Methodists Movement

Feb 2017 JC.jpeg

The recent proposal from the Uniting Methodist Movement (UMM) declares itself a vision forward for The United Methodist Church (UMC). It neither prohibits nor compels discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. It also neither prohibits nor compels the full inclusion of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual Transgender, Queer, Intersex, and Agender (LGBTQIA+) persons as a response to the love of God in Christ Jesus.

We, the members of the United Methodist Queer Clergy Caucus, celebrate UMM’s call to “challenge in love all that divides.” We affirm it as the same call we have made for 45 years. Yet it is difficult to see how the UMM is not a contradiction to the very call it espouses. It represents a significant reconfiguration of the connectional spirit of the UMC. The UMM path threatens to fragment the grace-filled alliance between LGBTQIA+ persons and our allies by trading inclusion away for the sake of unity. In short, the UMM is the very iteration of “all that divides.”

Given these ramifications, here are our primary concerns:

  •  By trivializing LGBTQIA+ justice, the UMM does further injury to those who have already been harmed;
  • The UMM does not fully take LGBTQIA+ voices into account;
  • LGBTQIA+ persons could not sign on to the UMM plan without participating in our own oppression or that of other members of our community;
  • The UMM is built on the delusion that the perpetuation of injustice is as moral as seeking of justice;
  • The UMM breaches our principle of connectionalism – where all persons can “participate in every level of connectional life and ministry.;”
  • It is as though we have become the Laodicean church described in Revelation: “So, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I am about to spit you out of my mouth” (Rev. 3:16). To seek a middle ground between inclusion and discrimination is to place institutional preservation before our call to follow the way of Jesus, in whom we have the freedom “to resist evil, injustice and oppression in whatever form they present themselves.” (UMC Baptismal vows)

We, LGBTQIA+ clergy, seek to live into this freedom and to do so with our kin in Christ. We seek reconciliation and fellowship. It is our prayerful hope and expectation that our voices in this response might be heard and engaged. As the Christ-spirit empowers and emboldens us, we look forward to working with the signatories to find a heart- and mind-expanding, hope- and faith-filled way to be and to grow into being the Beloved Community. This is the invitation we extend, in love and communion, to our kin in the UMM, and indeed to all the UMC community. Join us in envisioning our Beloved Community as that place, where all are atypical and all are welcome.

We look forward to the day when The United Methodist Church will live out the truth of the Gospel: That God’s love is for all people, and that we are all one in Christ Jesus.

May it be so!  

#CalledOUT #NoMoreCrumbs
p.s. The "+" symbol simply stands for all of the other sexualities, sexes, and genders that aren't included in these few letters

Please Click here to add your signature in solidarity!

Initial Signatories

Rev. Jeanelle Nicolas Ablola
Rev. Brian Adkins
Rev. Austin L. Adkinson
Rev. Dr. Israel I. Alvaran
Rev. Elyse Ambrose
Rev. Daryl Blanksma
Rev. Alex da Silva Souto
Rev. Sean Delmore
Rev. Anthony Fatta
Rev. Becca Girrell
Rev. C. Michele Johns
Rev. Lindsey Kerr
Rev. Lea Matthews
Rev. Lois McCullen Parr
Rev. Courtney McHill
Mrs. Caroline Anne Morrison
Rev. Jonathan Rodríguez-Cintrón
Rev. Kimberly O. Scott
Rev. Dr. Althea Spencer Miller
Rev. Kristin Gill Stoneking
Rev. Martha E. Vink
Rev. Jay Williams, Ph.D.
Rev. Dr. David Weekley
Rev. Vicki Woods

Queer Clergy Caucus Signatories (updated as 1:30pmEDT, Sept 18, 2017)

Rev. David W. Meredith
Rev. Katie Stickney
Rev. Cynthia S. Meyer
Rev. Laura Young
Rev Kathleen Reynolds
Rev. Ryan J. Scott
Rev. James A. Dwyer, Ph.D.
Rev. Joey Heath-Mason
Rev. Adrienne Trevathan
Rev. Dr Janet S Everhart
Deacon Vivian Ruth Waltz
Rev. Britt Cox
Ann Hunt, retired elder
Rev. Gregory H. Rogers
Rev. Maggie Roe
Rev. Dr. Edward Hansen
Rev. Dr. Jeanne G. Knepper
Rev. Jani Darak-Druck
Rev. Anna Blaedel
Rev. Dana Carroll
Anthony Larson Deacon Candidate
Pastor Kathi Meyerson
Rev. Sara Thompson Tweedy
Rev. M Barclay
Rev. Matthew Pearson
Peter Jabin, Diaconal Minister
Rev. Ardis Letey, Deacon
Rev. Nancy Kay Yount