Dear GFUMC Sisters and Brothers,
864 delegates from around the world met in St. Louis February 23 – 26 for a called session of the General Conference to vote on the three plans the Commission on the Way Forward presented regarding our deep division on the issue of human sexuality.
In the final session the delegates passed the Traditional Plan 438 to 384 (53% to 47%). This plan affirms our current belief that marriage is between God and one man and one woman. The plan also includes measures to ensure enforcement of this belief. The plan must go before the Judicial Council to determine its constitutionality. The Judicial Council meets April 23-25.
With heavy hearts we acknowledge this decision is deeply personal, painful and hurtful to many in our denomination and GFUMC. We believe there are no “thems” in this decision. This decision affects all of us. We together are the Body of Christ. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 12: If one part suffers, every part suffers with it…Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. We share one another’s hurt. That’s what family does.
This is the time for community. We love together, we hurt together, we grieve together, we find hope together. We want to be present with our brothers and sisters who are hurting to acknowledge and affirm their grief and pain.
With this in mind, we are creating a space this Thursday evening for a GFUMC family gathering in the Chapel at 6:00pm. We want you to be able to experience a time where your grief might be shared, heard and affirmed. We feel a strong need to pray together, sing together and worship our God of grace and glory together.
What will happen next? Good question. For now we want to pause, love each other, and be family.
We invite you to join us this Thursday, February 28 at 6:00pm in the Chapel. Childcare and a meal for infants through elementary age will be provided.
Each of you are deeply loved,
Scott, Jamey, Carolyn and Liz