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What's New and What's Ahead 

NEWS: General Conference to Move to 2021
**Click on image to read this announcement**

Our quest for an inclusive church is further delayed with General Conference being  postponed indefinitely because of the coronavirus. 
 

Years ago the late Bishop Dale White told me that he thought United Methodist's anti-gay stance would end like apartheid n South Africa.  He claimed that people began to ignore and disobey the legal restrictions long before the legal barriers officially came down.  People knew apartheid was wrong and many good folks just began living differently. 

 

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Maybe another Methodist layman, like Nelson Mandela, will emerge and lead his people to justice, inclusiveness, and reconciliation.  I'm not an expert on South African history, but I never forgot what Bishop White predicted. I think this is already happening in United Methodism and  maybe this coronavirus delay will speed us toward a more inclusive and just church.  We need each other--we are "members one of another."  Dr. Don Messer, Chair - UMARC

"Let's Talk:  LGBTQ +  Weddings"  Friday, 
June 19th, 2020 at 6:00 pm - Save the Date

   

Laity and clergy are invited to dinner to explore how pastors and local church members might prepare for same-gender weddings in their sanctuary.  Questions of liturgy, pre-marital counseling, use of language, communication, etc., will be discussed.  Open to everyone; sponsored by the United Methodist Association of Retired Clergy & Friends and the Mountain Sky Queer Clergy Caucus.  

Five Free Copies of New DVD Study on The Bible, Inclusiveness & Human Sexuality 

Education must accompany legislation, if The United Methodist Church truly is to become an inclusive community of faith. General church policies may soon change at General Conference 2021, but the key remains the transformation of hearts and minds of church members.  Bishop Karen Oliveto contends that the local church is the new frontier and recommends a new DVD series called "Faithful and Inclusive:  The Bible, Sexuality, and the United Methodist Church."  This new Bible study enables local churches to explore over six weeks what the Bible says about homosexuality.   

UMARC (United Methodist Association of Retired Clergy) will provide free copies to the first five churches anywhere this study can be mailed.  Just contact us HERE.  UMARC is also providing eight free copies to be shared throughout the Mountain Sky Area.  These will be available through your CRM (Congregation Resource Minister),  Click HERE for listing and address.  For more information about the series, CLICK HERE

Retired Clergy Urged to Perform Same - Sex Weddings

UMARC members are joining retired clergy across the denomination in offering their services to perform same-sex weddings.  Click HERE to add your name to the growing movement to reduce harm and move the church to inclusiveness. 

 

UMARC Chair, Dr. Donald E. Messer, is a member of the national Resist Harm committee encouraging prophetic witness and pastoral service, in contrast to the traditionalist polity.  Retired pastors risk complaints and trials, but severe penalties can be administered to active faithful pastors living in areas where bishops are intent on enforcing the Discipline no matter how punitive and exclusive.  

The Protocol Plan: Separation and the Restructuring United Methodism

Different plans are being advanced for the 2021 General Conference, but currently the one with the widest support is known as the Protocol Plan.  For the legislation as well as answer to questions, CLICK HERE  

Submitted GC2021 legislation now available online

The Advance Daily Christian Advocate, which contains the agenda, delegate listings and already submitted legislation for the 2021 General Conference, is now out. Delegates should be receiving print copies in the mail. People also can download the material in English, French, Portuguese and Kiswahili at the link.
See Advance Daily Christian Advocate

UMARC Partners with Resist Harm

**Click on the image below to learn more.

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Until legislation is passed removing the harmful restrictions currently embodied in the UM Discipline, active efforts must continue to resist, reduce, and mitigate the harm imposed by the Traditionalist agenda. 

2020 Revised Social Principles Available
The draft of the revised Social Principles was released late last year after years of listening and writing sessions by hundreds of United Methodists.  The good news is evident as we look at some of the changes. Most significant, as we look what the future of The United Methodist Church might be, are the revisions of the paragraphs Human Sexuality and Marriage found in “The Social Community.”
"After an eight year journey and a deeply United Methodist experience of revision, the General Conference is called to approve a document with a strong theological grounding and a more focused, succinct, and globally meaningful form" read the rest of the introduction to the 2020 Social Principles, and the Principles themselves, published in Church & Society HERE
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