This weekend, starting on Saturday, February 23, 2019, United Methodist delegates from around the world will gather in St. Louis, for a special General Conference to discern what path their denomination will pursue in regards to human sexuality… in particular, LGBTQIA sexuality.
[LGTBQIA is an abreviation/label designated by those who believe they are themselves (L) Lesbian, (G) Gay, (B) Bisexual, (T) Transgender, (Q) Queer (or Questioning), (I) Intersex, or (A) Asexual (or Allies)]
For many, this is a no brainer because the Bible literally addresses this topic of sexuality and who may legitimately have sex with whom.
For others, it’s a no brainer because much of the Old Testament is no longer considered binding, and the references in the New Testament can be explained away, and the 21st Century is so different from the times of the Bible thousands of years ago, that we shouldn’t be bound by those passages of ancient Scripture.
Another group finds this whole topic to be a no brainer because Jesus taught us to love one another and God is Love, so as long as you love whomever you choose, there should be no other considerations.
And, of course, nothing is ever as easy as any one of those no brainer arguments, so there will be A LOT of different people with A LOT of different opinions showing up in St. Louis this weekend… and they all have four days to hear each other, and hopefully, hear God… and then create a path to ministry that (hopefully) keeps ALL of those varied opinionated United Methodists together in a church that can get back to the business of representing Jesus Christ to a fallen, hurting, hell-bound world.
No matter where you come from in the world or how you have arrived at your opinion, there’s one thing for sure… It WON’T be a no-brainer kind of weekend!
Part of the frustration is that of the more than 11 or 12 million United Methodists around the world, only 864 delegates get to come to General Conference and make decisions for the entire church denomination. (We are a representative body, not a congregational kind of church where every single member gets to have their say.)
So how CAN you or I (or anybody who has the slightest interest) connect with this General Conference? ESPECIALLY if you, like me, can’t go to St. Louis even to watch?
United Methodist News Service has an excellent article on that exact topic! Check it out!