Persecution in America

Pro-LGBT United Methodists Divided Over Plan to Avoid Church Split Over Homosexuality

January 7, 2019

LGBT advocates who are members of the United Methodist Church have expressed divided opinions on a proposal supported by denominational leadership to prevent a split over the homosexuality debate.

In May, the UMC Council of Bishops expressed support for the "One Church Plan," a proposal meant to prevent a liberal-conservative split within the mainline denomination over its stance against homosexuality.

This plan involves changing the Book of Discipline to remove language labeling homosexuality "incompatible with Christian teaching," allowing churches in the United States to permit same-sex weddings and gay ordination while letting clergy and some overseas conferences retain their official opposition.

The Bible says "For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins," Hebrews 10:26

Reconciling Ministries Network, an LGBT advocacy group, has expressed mixed opinion about the One Church Plan.

"The plan goes out of its way to accommodate: bishops who don't want to ordain LGBTQ people, pastors who don't want to officiate weddings, boards of ordained ministry and clergy sessions who don't want to ordain LGBTQ people called by God in their conference, and laity of local churches who don't want to allow LGBTQ weddings in the building," wrote Lawrence.

"The OCP does not make any positive changes in those Central Conferences where LGBTQ people are persecuted under civil law or social prejudice. That omission is a missed opportunity to call on the church to stand up for the human rights of LGBTQ people worldwide."

Different views on the One Church Plan were also noted among attendees of the LGBT gathering "For Everyone Born," which was held July 26–29 in St. Louis, Missouri.

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