Nothing changed in Methodist church denomination
On Jan. 3, the United Methodist Church (UMC) announced a proposed separation due to contrasting views on human sexuality.
The action comes after the 2019 special session of the General Conference failed to resolve differences among church members.
The agreement, titled the Protocol of Reconciliation & Grace Through Separation, was written on Dec. 17 and announced Jan. 3.
“A split in the Methodist denomination has not happened yet,” Imperial First United Methodist Church Pastor Kent Griffen said. “We just need people in town to know that at this point, nothing has changed.”
Some news outlets say the UMC is splitting.
“That’s not true,” Griffen said.
It was a group that announced a proposal. This group is made up of representatives from a diverse group of United Methodist representatives.
The members include advocacy groups with contrasting views and bishops from around the world.
“Legislation to implement the Protocol statement—an eight-page document detailing the terms of a split—is expected to come before the United Methodist General Conference for a vote at its legislative meeting in May in Minneapolis,” according to the Great Plains Conference website.
The Great Plains Conference is made up of UMC churches in Nebraska and Kansas.
“The undersigned propose restructuring The United Methodist Church by separation as the best means to resolve our differences, allowing each part of the Church to remain true to its theological understanding, while recognizing the dignity, equality, integrity and respect of every person,” the protocol statement says.
“The protocol anticipates the formation of a new traditionalist Methodist denomination. Once formed, the new church would receive $25 million over the next four years and give up further claim to the UMC’s assets. An additional $2 million would be allocated for potential additional new Methodist denominations which may emerge from the UMC,” the statement reads.
“Nothing has changed here,” Griffen said. “It’s just gossip at this point.”
An FAQ page has been written on the Great Plains Conference’s website outlining the protocol. It can be viewed at https://bit.ly/2tBY8Gb.