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The United Methodist Schism

Discussion in 'Wesley's Parish - Methodist/ Nazarene' started by dreadnought, Apr 19, 2018.

  1. Methodized

    Methodized God is love and in God there is no darkness. Supporter

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    It is yet more complicated than that. The Progressives for 2020 now have the majority in the US jurisdictional conferences. Few if any conservative Bishops have a shot of getting elected. The majority of the US can’t stand the traditional plan with its punative punishments. And while the conservatives can, in theory, control the agencies through the GC, the US pays for 97% of the denomination. If people won’t give to it, those agencies can’t exist.

    I expect the denomination to split but after the huge surge in progressive and centrist delegates voted in, I could still see the WCA pulling out, or a negotiated split as a possibility.

    None of the leaders of the WCA are going to GC as delegates. They all got rejected. That is going to make the WCA very cautious about what it does next.
     
  2. hedrick

    hedrick Senior Veteran Supporter

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    Yes, the reaction in the annual conferences and jurisdictions has been stronger than I expected, particularly in the South. It's still not enough to change the situation at the GC level, certainly not permanently. Also, all those non-conservative representatives don't currently agree upon a direction. The WCA's big advantage last time was organization. Moderates and progressives have the numbers, but they're going to have to agree upon a direction. They'll have to do that in order to do your negotiated split.

    At the moment the direction seems to be that the US is simply ignoring the GC's decision. From my understanding of your organization, that's actually a viable approach.

    I'll be very interested to see how things develop. We now know how the various annual conferences feel. But in the end, there needs to be a situation that allows churches to continue to flourish. That's going to be hard. A lot of churches will have substantial numbers of people on both sides. Forcing them to make a decision is going to hurt everybody. Of course every other mainline denomination has gone through that. It's hard to avoid.
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2019
  3. Methodized

    Methodized God is love and in God there is no darkness. Supporter

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    Its hard to express the level of outrage both progressives and centrists felt about the Traditional Plan. Not only did the GC reject the One Church Plan (an olive branch for unity and peace) but that olive branch was slapped out of our hands and mean punitive penalties that are not found in any other part of the Discipline for any other action are being imposed.

    The level of outrage is so high that conservative conferences such as Great Plains (Kansas and Nebraska) and centrist conferences such as Iowa and others are sending entire progressive and centrist delegates to JC and GC. The WCA leadership predicts they lost 20-25% of their delegates.

    I believe that if some modification of the punitive Traditional Plan doesn't happen in 2020 a major portion of the US jurisdictions while start a real effort for form an American Methodist denomination.

    Its really hard to over emphasize the reaction at the grassroots level to what has happened.
     
  4. hedrick

    hedrick Senior Veteran Supporter

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    Outrage doesn't accomplish much, without a sensible plan of action.

    Modification of the Traditional Plan still leaves you with the prohibition in the Discipline. You're got an increasing number of conferences acting as if the One Church plan is in effect.

    You have to remove the prohibition, or understand that US jurisdictions are going to ignore it. Perhaps that's what you're thinking of. Modify the traditional plan to the point that nothing is enforceable?

    What's to prevent this whole thing from replaying in 4 years?
     
  5. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

    +21,609
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    The key statement you made is that those congregations which do not care for the outcome will just do whatever they want in defiance of it. It is already happening.
     
  6. Methodized

    Methodized God is love and in God there is no darkness. Supporter

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    I think you are missing what I'm saying. Action is happening at the Annual Conference level while groups of progressives and centrists are looking for a larger plan. It is no accident that in Iowa a completely progressive slate of GC, JC and 5/6 alternate delegates were all elected. (We didn't get the sixth one simply because we ran out of progressive candidate) There was a conference wide strategy and level of organization to make that happen never previously seen among centrists and progressives. Similar strategic movements have happened all over the US portion of the connection. Yes, for years the WCA crowd had that level of organization. The outrage has led to organized efforts conference by conference.

    Also while the GC is controlled right now by the WCA, it is easy to forget the power of the JC. They elect the Bishops and the members of the agencies of the UMC.

    I believe either the prohibitions will be removed, ignored or a new denominations(s) will form. The UMC won't continue to exist as it does now with 3/4 of the US rejecting the traditional plan. And, I actually understand that the US pays for 99% of the denomination, not 97% as I was previous told. There is no way the US is going to keep paying for a system that its US members have no say in. It just won't happen. Change is coming one way or another.
     
  7. A Shield of Turquoise

    A Shield of Turquoise New Member

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    It seems ridiculous to say that US Methodists have "no say" in the UMC. Obviously they do have a say. Should voting power be apportioned according to financial contribution? If not, then what's the point of mentioning that they contribute 99%? This extremely entitled, colonialist attitude among the US progressive Methodists does nothing to endear them to Methodists abroad who would otherwise be sympathetic or open to listening to them.
     
  8. Methodized

    Methodized God is love and in God there is no darkness. Supporter

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    United States
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    What we have is unequal say.

    Central Conferences outside of the US have the authority to modify provisions in the Discipline to fit individual cultural and national circumstances. The only jurisdictions that do not have such authority are the US Jurisdictions.

    So, Central Conference members get to vote on rules that only effect the US while the US Jurisdictions don't get to vote on items that only effect the Central Conferences.

    No I'm not suggesting that representation be based on money. But people are reluctant to give money to an institution that gives unequal rights, even more so if they are giving most of the money. And particularly when many US congregations struggle to make apportionment and still maintain their own congregations.
     
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