Church Council Vote on June 4
On June 4, 2019, the Church Council will meet to vote on a proposal to join the Reconciling Ministries Network. Joining may make it easier for others looking for an inclusive church to find us, thanks to a directory of churches on their website, and it may help strengthen our inclusive stance in the eyes of the public. This past Sunday, Paradise Valley United Methodist Church held congregational meetings designed to talk about this next step in fulfilling our vision to have a “love that crosses all barriers and embraces all people.” Leaders from the Diversity Ministry Team, Pastor Dave, Pastor Chris, and Church Council members presented the forum which began with a discussion of recent developments within the larger United Methodist Church before moving on to the question of joining the RMN.
The meeting focused solely on these two important issues facing the church:
- How is the Church Responding to the UMC Traditional Plan?
Many have asked how we and other churches across the denomination have been responding to the UMC General Conference 2019 adoption of the Traditional Plan. A story by the UM News service on May 20, 2019 summarizes where we are now. At the church meeting held on Sunday, May 19, those in attendance discussed the difficulties of this plan for the larger United Methodist Church and how damaging it is to the LGBTQ+ community. A number of other annual conferences and groups within the church have expressed their desire to resist implementation of this plan. There are many conversations happening right now across the church about how we will hold together or what a new Methodist Church might look like. However, there are no specific recommendations at this time to leave the UMC. We will be looking at next year’s General Conference (2020) for further clarification about the shape and future of the UMC.
- Should We Join the Reconciling Ministries Network?
The second part of the congregational discussion focused on what it would mean for our church to join the Reconciling Ministries Network. Your thoughtful questions at the forum led to a rich discussion. If you missed the meeting and have questions or feedback to share with our leadership, please email Pastor Dave firstname.lastname@example.org OR any of the Church Council members. Contact the church office at 602.840.8360 for a list of council member names and emails.
Listen to a recording of the 10:45 am presentation and download a copy of the PowerPoint presentation. The recording does not include the Q&A.
We will share a video of the presentation and the recording soon.
Pastor Dave Summers, Christopher Wurpts and Lauren Coffman helped prepare these FAQs, which outline some of the pros and cons of joining the network. We wanted to share these before the Church Council considers a vote on June 4, 2019.
Statement of Inclusivity
These words are shared every week in worship and live on the church website’s welcome page for all to see where we stand and what our invitation is:
We invite you to join us on a shared journey of life and faith, open to all, regardless of age, ability, economics, color, race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, politics, theology or anything else that might separate us from each other. Whoever you are and wherever you may be on your spiritual journey, you’re invited to walk with Christ in community with all of God’s children, and embrace the endless possibilities of God’s unconditional love.