September 15, 2017

Lesbian “Bishop” Karen Oliveto Warns to Not “Create an Idol Out of” Jesus, Says He Had “Bigotries and Prejudices” (UPDATED)

10/10/2017 Update: It has recently been brought to my attention that Dr. Oliveto’s staff in the Yellowstone Conference have now removed the original Facebook post to which we linked below.  The URL was https://www.facebook.com/YACUMC/posts/1445909482157812

I have seen no public apology or retraction from Ms. Oliveto, nor any public explanation for why her August 19 message, in which she herself exposed some of the most controversial parts of her theology, is now being hidden.  In any case, on September 13, I saved screen captures of her message, which you can see are taken from the above web address, and am now making them available here: Screen Shot #1Screen Shot #2Screen Shot #3Screen Shot #4, and Screen Shot #5.  

 

 

 

Do those who have supported and defended the efforts to make Dr. Karen Oliveto a bishop in the United Methodist Church love the cause of LGBTQ liberation more than they love Jesus Christ?

If you think that it sounds too harsh to even ask such a question, then I respectfully invite you to consider how before and especially after the Western Jurisdiction elected her in July 2016, the jubilant words and actions of liberal caucus activists and other Oliveto supporters throughout the denomination have amounted to asserting that Oliveto’s being an openly partnered lesbian activist – to the exclusion of ALL other considerations, even the public track record of her bizarre theology – made her THE most qualified possible individual to be entrusted with all the power and responsibility bishops enjoy to teach and guard the Christian faith. I have yet to observe any limits to the extremes of theological oddity or mistreatment of other people for which Oliveto’s supporters will quickly give her a free pass. And then consider how Dr. Oliveto has more recently been using the bishop’s office, particularly with her August 19 weekly message, which was brought to my attention this week.

In a key passage, Karen Oliveto says:

“Too many folks want to box Jesus in, carve him in stone, create an idol out of him. But this story cracks the pedestal we’ve put him on. The wonderful counselor, mighty God, everlasting one, prince of peace, was as human as you and me. Like you and me, he didn’t have his life figured out. He was still growing, maturing, putting the pieces together about who he was and what he was supposed to do. We might think of him as the Rock of Ages, but he was more like a hunk of clay, forming and reforming himself in relation to God.

As one person put it: ‘Jesus wasn’t a know-it-all, he was also learning God’s will like any human being and finally he changed his mind…if Jesus didn’t have to know it all innately, but rather could grow into new and deeper understanding through an openness to God’s people [even those he formerly discounted], maybe if Jesus could change his mind then maybe so can we!”

Create an idol out of Jesus? Yes, Jesus was and is fully human. That’s an indispensable part of the foundational Christian doctrine of the Incarnation.

But aside from a very brief mention in a list of traditional titles for Jesus, Oliveto’s message largely steers clear of the other part of the Incarnation, that Jesus was and is fully and eternally divine. Indeed, it is difficult to see how her view of Jesus is ultimately higher than what might be affirmed by some Unitarians or even atheists.

Through most of this message, rather than using traditional Trinitarian language about Jesus Christ’s relationship with the Father (i.e., the relationship between the First and Second Persons of the Trinity), Oliveto uses essentially Unitarian language in framing Jesus as wholly separate and distinct from God, such as by talking about Jesus “in relation to God” as in the above-cited excerpt. Such sloppiness, if due to genuine confusion or simple lack of carefulness, could be understandable from a layperson who lacks much deep instruction in the faith. But not from someone the church has set aside for the especially theologically trained role of ordained ministry. Let alone a bishop.

In the case of the experienced, well-educated Dr. Oliveto, it seems less likely that this significant shift in language was simply not intentional.

By saying that Jesus Christ “was as human as you and me,” Oliveto makes clear that she means far more than that He began His physical life on Earth as an embryo in His mother’s womb or that He had a gender and ethnicity or that He was just as susceptible as we are to such limitations as hunger or fatigue. She jettisons traditional portrayals of Jesus understanding His own mission while He diligently pursued it to instead paint Jesus as being no less confused, uncertain, ignorant, and even fallible than any of the rest of us. As part of the basis for this new view of Jesus, Oliveto prefers the authority of an individual mysteriously referred to as “one person” over the authority of the New Testament writers and church tradition.

The famous 18th century hymn addressed Jesus as “Rock of Ages,” invoking the biblical metaphor of God being a secure rock for us. But Oliveto’s Jesus offers no such security. Instead, she urges seeing Him as akin to an imperfect, unstable, unsolid “hunk of clay,” needing to be continually reformed and changed for halting attempts at improvement.

Oliveto makes clear that her Jesus is one who was not only deficient in his knowledge of facts, but one who was also morally faulty. Oliveto’s Jesus is NOT a sinless Jesus! Instead, her Jesus was guilty of such sins as “his bigotries and prejudices.” According to Oliveto, He needed to “learn” some moral truths that he had evidently never learned before the Syrophoenician woman taught them to him, so that “he changed his mind” to accept that she was right and he was wrong. Oliveto insists that Jesus had to “come around” and experience “conversion,” which she says that he did thanks to a human teacher he met in the course of his earthly ministry.

Meanwhile, Karen Oliveto actually warns against those of us who “create an idol out of” Jesus Christ. The commonly accepted theological definition of an idol is something other than God, usually something created by human hands, improperly worshipped as a god. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary broadly defines an “idol” as “a false god.”

So by definition, it is impossible to idolize Jesus if He is truly God. So by definition, Karen Oliveto’s words mean that Jesus Christ is NOT god, and that to worship Him as such would be to worship a false god!

The biblical passage that provoked Oliveto to reveal this part of her theology is an admittedly challenging one. Frankly, if I were doing an evangelistic one-on-one Bible study with a non-Christian friend, this Matthew 15:21-28 passage (paralleled in Mark 7:24-30) would not be my first choice for where to begin.

Oliveto is hardly alone in feeling unsettled by how Jesus initially refused to heal a Syrophoenician woman’s demon-possessed daughter, and how He first offered a brief proverb metaphorically identifying Jews as children and Gentiles like this woman as dogs. On a side note, Oliveto’s reaction is a bit curious given her own history of taking a more positive view of the alleged benefits of demon possession.

In any case, Oliveto moves rather quickly from a superficial reading of the passage to conclude that it shows that up until that point, Jesus sinfully “had made his life too small” and that Jesus needed to “give up his bigotries and prejudices” and learn that “the heart of God and the care of God” extends also to Gentiles, a truth of which he was evidently unaware before that moment.

In rushing to make this rather negative judgment of Jesus Christ, Oliveto appears to have been uninterested in how faithful Christian commentary over the years has interpreted this passage in ways that make Jesus come across as less harsh, such as by suggesting that Jesus was using commonly used language of that context in a playfully bantering way, translating the word Jesus uses for “dogs” as referring to household pets rather than the more negative word for strays on the street, or how a careful look at His words shows them at least subtly hinting, “your turn will come.” And despite Oliveto’s presuming to sit in judgment over which congregations in the UMC qualify as “bad churches” and which are “really United Methodist” in their theology, she appears to have not bothered consulting John Wesley’s Explanatory Notes Upon the New Testament, part of the UMC’s official Doctrinal Standards. If she had, she may have benefitted from considering Wesley’s remark on Christ’s initial refusal to grant the woman’s request: “He sometimes tries our faith in like manner.”

Much of the knee-jerk discomfort we in the twenty-first century initially feel upon reading this passage stems from how utterly unfamiliar Jesus Christ’s particular context of ancient Near Eastern Judaism, and the divisions from other people groups in the area, are for us today. But if we cannot be bothered to understand the Jewishness of Jesus then we cannot really understand Jesus.

One need not agree with everything Karl Barth said to appreciate the wisdom of that influential theologian’s famous remark, “In spite of all the allegorizing and generalizing interpretation which it has not escaped to soften the offence, the Old Testament still remains from generation to generation to ensure that the particularist aspect of the Christian message directed to the world, the simple truth that Jesus Christ was born a Jew, is never lost sight of, but constantly survives the irruption of all too generalized views of the man Jesus.”

Also revealing is how this passage prompts Oliveto to ask, “Where is the gentle Jesus, meek and mild….?” As with many clergy within the echo chamber of liberal United Methodist caucuses, she appears to be counting on a widespread amount of biblical illiteracy among her audience. The question of how fair an assumption that is to make about much of the Mountain Sky Episcopal Area can be discussed elsewhere.

But the all-too-common portrayal of a consistently weak, inoffensive, undemanding “gentle Jesus, meek and mild” bears little relation to the actual Jesus we meet in the four Gospels. Just ask the temple money changers, Pharisees, or others with whom Jesus was hardly “gentle,” including his own disciples. Just imagine the courage and stamina involved in directly facing down the devil himself, while Jesus was at the end of his physical limits. And how many biblical figures can you name who are recorded as talking as much about Hell as Jesus?

In the first book of his beloved Chronicles of Narnia, C. S. Lewis includes a dialogue with a little girl who is intimidated about meeting the lion Aslan (who allegorically represents Jesus) and asks if he is “safe.” In response, she is told “Who said anything about safe? ’Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.” Elsewhere, it is made clear that Aslan is “wild” and “not like a tame lion.”

In contrast to the Jesus of historic, traditional Christian faith, including the UMC’s Doctrinal Standards, with such teaching as noted here, Karen Oliveto preaches a gospel of a Jesus who is so much more tame, weak, inoffensive, and above all, manageable.

This Jesus offered by Oliveto offers so much less to inspire, let alone command, awe, reverence, worship, and submission.

For Oliveto, maybe that’s her point.

 


In case Oliveto’s August 19 message gets taken down, I am pasting its full text here:

Below is Bishop Karen’s weekly message to the Mountain Sky Area:

Praying for the clergy and laity of the Mountain Sky Area as we prepare to come together for worship.

I love the Gospel text of this week’s lectionary–Matthew 15:21-28. You know the story:

A Canaanite woman came down from the hills and pleaded with Jesus to heal her sick daughter. Jesus ignored her. The disciples get involved, “Jesus, can’t you do something? She’s driving us crazy.” Jesus tells them no.

Then the woman came back to Jesus, went to her knees, and begged. “Master, help me.” He said, “It’s not right to take bread out of children’s mouths and throw it to dogs.” She was quick: “You’re right, Master, but beggar dogs do get scraps from the master’s table.” Jesus gave in and the woman’s daughter is healed.

Jesus, Jesus, what is up with you? Where is the gentle Jesus, meek and mild, the one who said, “Let the children come to me”? What happened to Jesus, the one who said, “Consider the lilies”. Where did his compassion and love go?

But as I ponder the story, as I look at the verbal jousting between Jesus and this female who is considered less than human because of her gender and ethnicity, I can’t help but note how Jesus comes around.

Too many folks want to box Jesus in, carve him in stone, create an idol out of him. But this story cracks the pedestal we’ve put him on. The wonderful counselor, mighty God, everlasting one, prince of peace, was as human as you and me. Like you and me, he didn’t have his life figured out. He was still growing, maturing, putting the pieces together about who he was and what he was supposed to do. We might think of him as the Rock of Ages, but he was more like a hunk of clay, forming and reforming himself in relation to God.

As one person put it: “Jesus wasn’t a know-it-all, he was also learning God’s will like any human being and finally he changed his mind…if Jesus didn’t have to know it all innately, but rather could grow into new and deeper understanding through an openness to God’s people [even those he formerly discounted], maybe if Jesus could change his mind then maybe so can we!

As he encountered this one who was a stranger, he comes to a fuller sense of the people he is to be in relationship with. He is meant to be a boundary crosser, and in the crossing over, reveals bigotry and oppression for what they are: human constructs that keep all of us from being whole. He learns that no one, no one, including the outsider, the foreigner, the hated, the misunderstood, the feared, no one is outside of the heart of God and the care of God.

In his conversion, by changing his mind and acting outside of tradition, by treating the woman as a person and responding to her needs, Jesus is willing to stand against culture and social norms and risk his status and power. It is this action of giving up that Jesus gains the most: because of his willingness to be in relationship with one so different, Jesus finds greater intimacy with God. The two go hand in hand.

This is the heart of the story. This is what offers us hope. If Jesus can change, if he can give up his bigotries and prejudices, if he can realize that he had made his life too small, and if, in this realization, he grew closer to others and closer to God, than so can we.

Blessings,

Bishop Karen


111 Responses to Lesbian “Bishop” Karen Oliveto Warns to Not “Create an Idol Out of” Jesus, Says He Had “Bigotries and Prejudices” (UPDATED)

  1. Danny says:

    Why and how is this woman still allowed to be in the UMC, let alone be a bishop???

    • Mary Rivera says:

      How does an individual Bishop even be considered as someone who might have better understanding of the Word and our Discipline than the rest of the leadership in the United Methodist Church? Why has there not been a trial right away to establish the guilt of intentionally breaking her vows of ordination, and therefore be dismissed from her “leadership” role in the UMC? Is the UMC deceiving the members that tithe to the UMC because they believe that we are following our Discipline and the Word? Is this the way Jesus intended for us to lead our families and children? I believe NOT!

    • BJ says:

      My question exactly!! Incensed is just one word I would use for the failure of UMC Denomination to deal with heresy and disobedience swiftly and and with finality when it comes to being credentialed in the UMC.

    • I think of the poor people sitting in front of her as their teacher. I’m glad I’m not one of them. I can’t believe anything she had put out there.

  2. A Bishop for Satan. This woman is part of the reason that the UMC has no future. I say Schism ASAP !!

  3. David Miller says:

    Sadly Oliveto has wide spread company in the clergy of the UMC. I am growing to believe our clergy have failed us all.

  4. Mike Hayes says:

    Who gave her the power to judge Jesus?

  5. Palamas says:

    So, this clergyperson is a formal heretic. When do the charges get filed? When does the church take its responsibility to teach the truth and safeguard the flock from falsehood and clerical blasphemy seriously enough to act?

    • Chuck says:

      I would agree that she is a heretic but she is NOT a “formal heretic” until and unless she is convicted of heresy in a church trial. Charges, I believe, have been preferred. By law, if there is to be a trial it must take place in the Western Jurisdiction. There probably is a very good likelihood there will be a “just resolution” of the charges, which The Book of Discipline says is to be preferred and in reality is a way to avoid doing what you don’t want to do. You would need to get a prosecutor and members of the court who think that these views amount to heresy, who do not hold the same views and are willing to convict. Good luck on that.

  6. Jerald Walz says:

    She is a heretic. Period.

  7. Bill says:

    This is the reason I recently left the UMC. We had a new pastor installed at our church and I could tell right away he is a mostly left leaning LGBT apologist and was not shy about squeezing politics into his sermons. I’d had enough and left the church.

  8. Rev. Dr. Jean-Marie Nkonge says:

    What is the position of the Council of Bishops?

    • April User says:

      The Judicial Council ruled that Oliveto was in violation and have sent the responsibility of removing her back to the Western Jurisdiction. The WJ is dragging its feet – since they are the body that voted her in.

  9. Doug Monroe says:

    John, Very well said, even elegant. But you are much too soft. This so-called church person must be attacked with a much more pointed tone. Such idiocy is pure subversive evil when wrapped in the cloth of the church. I am not a Methodist, but should warn: you have pure, deadly, evil cancer growing inside you. Eliminate it from your body or die. This is very serious business. Sincerely, Doug

  10. Franz says:

    Running out now to the woods to gather some good kindling… who’s got the matches?

  11. Darryl Zoller says:

    I appreciated Mr. Lomperis’ observations and the insights he shared.

  12. theenemyhatesclarity says:

    And all of us who are United Methodists pay her salary.

    In Christ,

    The enemy hates clarity

  13. Pete Fleming says:

    Karen Oliveto is a bishop, not a would be Bishop. The lectiomary passage she preached on is one of the more curious stories in the entire gospel. It deserves special treatment. My wife used the same approach in her sermon about it. Jesus did change his mind about this woman. By the way, “Rock of Ages” was written by Augustus M
    Toplady as part of his incessant attack on John Wesley over Wesley’s rejection of predestination. Get your history straight. Your theology could use some help too.

    • Steve B. says:

      Fascinatingly, God commands Abraham to leave his country, his birthplace and his father’s house to travel to the unknown land of Canaan (Israel) without any introduction to Abraham’s personality or his previous connection with God. Indeed, God elects Abraham as the progenitor or patriarch of “a great nation which will become a blessing to all the families of the earth” without any mention of Abraham’s worthiness.

      Just like the woman that the “Bishop” talks about, even Jacob (Israel) had to be determined to stick it out until he got the answer he desired:”… a man came and wrestled with Jacob until the dawn began to break. When the man saw that he would not win the match, he touched Jacob’s hip and wrenched it out of its socket. Then the man said, “Let me go, for the dawn is breaking!” But Jacob said, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” “What is your name?” the man asked. He replied, “Jacob.” “Your name will no longer be Jacob,” the man told him. “From now on you will be called Israel, because you have fought with God and with men and have won.” “Please tell me your name,” Jacob said. “Why do you want to know my name?” the man replied. Then he blessed Jacob there.” Genesis 32:24‭-‬29

      ROMANS 9:11-13 (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;) It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger. As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

      I guess that the God of the Israelites was also a bigot: “Give the following instructions to the people of Israel: When you cross the Jordan River into the land of Canaan, you must drive out all the people living there. You must destroy all their carved and molten images and demolish all their pagan shrines. Take possession of the land and settle in it, because I have given it to you to occupy. Numbers 33:51‭-‬53

      These are just a few of the myriad of scriptures that show that God chooses how He will use chosen vessels.

      As for Jesus being an idol…not possible, since He was, and is God incarnate.

    • Steven Bacheler says:

      Fascinatingly, God commands Abraham to leave his country, his birthplace and his father’s house to travel to the unknown land of Canaan (Israel) without any introduction to Abraham’s personality or his previous connection with God. Indeed, God elects Abraham as the progenitor or patriarch of “a great nation which will become a blessing to all the families of the earth” without any mention of Abraham’s worthiness.

      Just like the woman that the “Bishop” talks about, even Jacob (Israel) had to be determined to stick it out until he got the answer he desired:”… a man came and wrestled with Jacob until the dawn began to break. When the man saw that he would not win the match, he touched Jacob’s hip and wrenched it out of its socket. Then the man said, “Let me go, for the dawn is breaking!” But Jacob said, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” “What is your name?” the man asked. He replied, “Jacob.” “Your name will no longer be Jacob,” the man told him. “From now on you will be called Israel, because you have fought with God and with men and have won.” “Please tell me your name,” Jacob said. “Why do you want to know my name?” the man replied. Then he blessed Jacob there.” Genesis 32:24‭-‬29

      ROMANS 9:11-13 (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;) It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger. As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

      I guess that the God of the Israelites was also a bigot: “Give the following instructions to the people of Israel: When you cross the Jordan River into the land of Canaan, you must drive out all the people living there. You must destroy all their carved and molten images and demolish all their pagan shrines. Take possession of the land and settle in it, because I have given it to you to occupy. Numbers 33:51‭-‬53

      These are just a few of the myriad of scriptures that show that God chooses to use, how He will use them.

      As for Jesus being an idol…not possible, since He was God incarnate.

  14. Kevin says:

    We have a lesbian bishop and are shocked to discover that she is a humanist.

  15. Rawlin says:

    It is quite obvious that Oliveto has not been truly born again,(you can know a tree by the fruit it bears). We should truly pray for Jesus to save her soul. And that she should come to a personal relationship with Jesus.

  16. Steve Goodier says:

    I wonder how critiquing the theology of a church leader from a sermon helps to bring the body of Christ together.

  17. Tim Bushong says:

    The hermeneutic used to ordain her is the same for homo…wait–too late.

  18. Joe Sherrill says:

    As is the case of so many of these false teachers, they simply do not believe the Holy Scriptures and use their own belief system to avoid having to obey God’s Word.

    • Karen Yochim says:

      John Wesley’s work establishing the church fascinates me and I love reading about his thousand miles of horseback riding back and forth in England and coming to America to continue carrying his message. (A friend of mine’s great grandfather was one of his workers which gives me even more motivation to learn about him.) I find this woman’s remarks arrogant and wonder what you think John Wesley would have to say about her condescension and patronizing tone when speaking of our Lord and Savior.

  19. Rev. David Grueser says:

    As I have said before of those Bishops that “secretly” espouse similar theological claims, she is, “with all due respect” (for the Office of Bishop), “nothing more than a cowardly heretic.” But, worse yet, she is a bold and potentially detrimental and boastfully arrogant slanderer of The Gospel and to the Doctrine and Discipline of the UMC (as per Paul’s writings of such individuals in the Book of Romans 1:18 – 32 warns us). How is she still a Bishop? How is she still even considered a United Methodist? I can remember Rev./Dr. Maxie Dunnam warning us (Asbury Theological Seminary students) of the coming tide of such heretical individuals and the false doctrines that they would espouse. Yes, I was Ordained an Elder in the UMC; But, much more importantly, I was called and ordained by God. Will we stand by and allow this kind of thing to go untethered (and Un-Charged) in our beloved Church? May God have His way with His Church and may He raise up those who will diligently (and with the same amount of Spiritual fervor) stand firm in their faith and quince such heresies and call out those who are teaching such False Doctrines, lest the United Methodist Church no longer be “united.”

  20. Leon M Green says:

    Jesus said no judging in many different ways. But he as the only Son of God still may judge fornication as a sin. That is not bigotry.

    • Sean says:

      You may want to read up on Matthew 18 and 1 Cor 5 and 6. There is a lot that needs to be judged within and by the Church. You are called to do so.

  21. Teófilo de Jesús says:

    Her language is not Unitarian, is Nestorian. Think about it… 😊

  22. Brother Lomperis presents a well thought out response which I agree with except at the end – John, you become far too “safe” in your summary. What I am hearing in her words are the spirit of an anti-CHRIST. Her teachings fit the false teachers of the end times. How dismayed I am, as an elder, with the leadership of the Methodist flock – for the most part they are Spiritless and voiceless. It is time for a change.

  23. William says:

    The idol here is LGBTism. The movement has gained such a foothold in the progressive wing of the UMC that its leaders are now developing their own theology, a new, conforming to the secular world and the prince of this world theology. In order for the Commission on a Way Forward to succeed in keeping the church united, it will have to come up with a plan similar to placing one on an east-west highway in one vehicle and having him/her travel both east and west simultaneously and arrive at two opposite destinations at the same time.

  24. Brad says:

    Where does it say that Jesus changed his mind? I read that he was leading her to confirm her faith (he already knew).

  25. Margaret Patton says:

    This woman is as crazy as they come

    • Karen Yochim says:

      Or maybe she is yearning for attention and will say outrageous things in order to achieve this goal. My instincts tell me this is what she craves. Attention.

  26. Krzystyna says:

    “Liberalism is the root of heresy, the tree of evil in whose branches all the harpies of infidelity find ample shelter; it is today the evil of all evils- it is therefore, the radical and universal denial of all Divine truth and Christian dogma, the primal type of all heresy, and the supreme rebellion against the authority of God and His Church. As with Lucifer, its maxim is, ‘I will not serve.’

  27. April user says:

    Dozens and dozens of comments on the Facebook post of Oliveto’s words.

  28. Scott T Imler says:

    The UMC is still a miracle in the making — just a stranger on the bus trying to make its way home.

  29. Mark Roush says:

    This is a sad direction that is being taken by the UMC and is not slowing down. Each and every person has to make a decision as to what teachings they are going to follow. Thousands have left the UMC is search of the Biblical guidance that they need. Pray that you be guided to Christ’s ministery.

  30. Lell says:

    This lesbian “Bishop” Karen Oliveto, says Jesus has “Bigotries and Prejudices”. Well, she is quite right! Jesus does have bigotries and prejudices, many of them, but against “SIN” and not at mankind. He was very plane when sharing His warning. Oliveto, LGBTQ, UMC leaders and those who want to be politically correct they need to remember why in Genesis two cities were destroyed.
    The biblical account of Sodom and Gomorrah is recorded in Genesis chapters 18-19. Jesus Christ our Lord, and Savior informed Abraham that “the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous”
    The Bible records two angels, disguised as human men, visited Sodom and Gomorrah. Lot met the angels and urged them to stay at his house. The Bible then informs us, before, they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom both the young and old surrounded Lot’s house. They called out to Lot, “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them.” Well, Jesus Christ is never changing, the bible reminds us this over and over throughout the Bible. Christ is today as He was in the past and He will be the same tomorrow. Karen, LGBTQ and those politically correct followers, for your sake ask for forgiveness and change your ways. This is not my account but Jesus Christ’s warning. Amen.

    • Phyllis says:

      This is absolutely correct. What about Leviticus 18:22, Jude 1:7, 1 Corinthians 6:9-11, Revelation 22:15? How can the church justify their actions. I’m all for following the word of God, not this bishop and her lifestyle.

  31. Donna says:

    The UMC needs to focus on The Word instead of the World!! If we don’t get back to winning people to Jesus Christ the United Methodist is going to sink.

  32. RonT says:

    I am no longer a United Methodist but still have a love for the basic doctrine and refer to this site to follow the progress or digress.

    I can only ask God to help whatever is left.

    My final decision was based on Revelation 18:4 KJV. ” And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her.” Yes, I know the subject is Babylon but is it really a stretch?

    • Wayne says:

      RonT,

      You are very correct about the UMC as a whole. While there are some good people, churches and clergy within the UMC, a schism is surely not too far ahead in the UMC’s future. I commend you for getting out. I am currently a lapsed UMC member of another UMC Conference, now living in PA. I have not joined any local church here because of all the nonsense witnessed in the church at large and frustration with liberal interpretations of Scripture. I too am giving serious thought to leaving, but have not found the right church yet. I also am alarmed by the increased use of Peterson’s “The Message” in my church, which is a horrible Bible paraphrase. It truly is a “mess” in its wording. Anyway, I digress here and realize that we all must work out our own salvation with fear and trembling.

      • RonT says:

        It is obvious that Bishop(?) Oliveto does not seem to have grasped the meaning of the message in Matthew 15. That is bad enough, but she seems to be denying the Trinity. Where did she study and why has she not been corrected?

        I agree with you that there are many good people in the UMC; unfortunately, the clergy and the administration have been lax in their efforts to prepare their congregations to test the errors that are presenting themselves. We should have been prepared as Jesus stated in Revelation 2:2, “… I know that you cannot tolerate wicked people, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles (ministers) but are not, and have found them false.” In fact, the clergy and the administration should be at the head of the pack. I wonder if there is any clergy left that is up to the task? The administration doesn’t seem to be up to it.

      • Karen Yochim says:

        Speaking of schism within Methodism, I love that during the schism of old in the 1800s that William Booth & his Salvation Army came out of that split. Have always thought very highly of the S.A.

  33. Delisa says:

    If Jesus is not God then what are we doing? We are believers and followers of the Son of God, Jesus the Christ. Otherwise what is the point? Can everyone say “false prophet”? If God’s people knew God’s holy word and were living into the holy word to know him intimately then we would know that the bishop is lying about the one true God, the great I AM. I have a lot to learn but I do know that much!

  34. Im4truth4all says:

    Anything I don’t agree with does not get my financial support.

  35. Loves God says:

    I absolutely do not want to leave my Church family but I’m not sure how much longer I can continue to support the Methodist Organization if they don’t do something about this.

    • April User says:

      Have you looked into the Wesleyan Covenant Association? That is a group of UMC lay, clergy, and bishops preparing for what may be the future of the UMC. I believe they are meeting in Houston in October.

  36. Mary Wright says:

    I truly find it hard to believe that the Council of Bishops have not stopped this woman from using her office to deny Christ. Unfortunately, she will bring others down with her because of her carnal views. But those in authority over her have the bigger sin. How unfortunate.

  37. Ken pennington says:

    In the not so distant future the United Methodist Church will split. The conservative and liberal wings of the church will go their separate ways

  38. Bob Sweeney says:

    May God truly move and return us to the work of the kingdom, deliver us from false doctrine, return us to what the Methodist Church is to be, not what man or false prophets such as Karen say we should be! How have we let Satan infect our church?

  39. David Vaughn says:

    Ah! The Arianism heresy resurfaces again in a modern form! The idea that Jesus was not eternally divine. He was fully human and ‘grew into’ divinity as God blessed him. That heresy was dismissed in the Council of Chalcedon. Sorry ‘Bishop’ Karen, but you’re preaching heresy.

  40. Dan says:

    So when is she going to be tried for heresy, specifically Adoptionism? Just joking, the UMC is so inclusive that they’ll just say she comfortable fits in the big tent.

  41. John says:

    I checked the comments on the original post, and Bishop Oliveto does not appear to be walking back any of her assertions. It appears she meant what she said and said what she meant. When someone posts a comment taking umbrage at her denial of Jesus’ divinity and sinless, she simply shrugs it off in her reply.

  42. Rose Abels says:

    John Wesley is turning over in his grave. Jesus is Wonderful, Counselor, Prince of Peace, Mighty GOD.

  43. Nancy weber says:

    Why is she still our Bishop? I’m thinking of leaving the methodist church because of her.

  44. Jay Haug says:

    I heard a similar “sermon” recently from an Episcopal priest in Boston who interpreted the story of the Syro-Phoenician woman as one in which Jesus learned how to receive wisdom from a woman and a gentile. This was to her an indication of Jesus overcoming his “white male privilege.”

    • April User says:

      This “pastor’s” conclusion of “white male privilege” leads to the next thought: What, of Jesus words, can I believe? Probably none. We have become our own god, made in our own image.
      BTW – Jesus was white?

  45. Micah says:

    Simple heresy. And blasphemy.

  46. Butch says:

    Romans 1:18-32; Galatians 1:8-9; 2 Timothy 4:3-4 It would help if she had read the Bible

  47. As a (so far – 78 years) lifetime member of the Methodist Church, I have been deeply troubled by the trend in the last 20 years or so. Bishop Oliveto is probably the most blatant of this trend. My Wife and I were, for several years, our Church representatives to Annual Conference. There were people there that you couldn’t even discuss these things with. Political Correctness is destroying the UMC.

  48. Rob Edwards says:

    Karen, a word of advice: Seek ye the Lord while He may be found! If you don’t turn your life over to the Son of the Living and true God, you BUST HELL WIDE OPEN! The very Jesus you mock and blaspheme will, one day, be your Judge. If you continue to reject His gift of salvation and deny His love you will be cast into the lake of fire. Remember, it is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God! <

  49. Ted says:

    How can the UMC continue to allow this heretical bishop continue to serve? God has warned us about the false prophets and she definitely is a false prophet…..her LGBTQ agenda is her god.

  50. Patti LeCraft says:

    It was apparent from the beginning of this hijacking that Olivetto cares more for the LGBT movement than for the UMC because if it were the other way around she would have withdrawn when she saw how it affected the church. Next up: Olivetto’s judgement of God. (should be an interesting lecture)

  51. Gilmer Gal says:

    Bishop Karen, Jesus is God. Jesus died for our sins. If he was sinful himself and with any blotch, he would not be worthy of sacrifice. Even the Hebrews couldn’t sacrifice an animal that was not perfect. He was the final sacrifice for all mankind. I worship Him. You, however, want to make Him into a lame martyr for mankind. Shame on you.

  52. Betty Hoch says:

    If this is what the Methodist church has come to, it is indeed lost. God help it.

  53. John Rentz says:

    I too was very confused by the portrayal of Jesus in this passage from Matthew 15:21-28, until I took the Kairos Course (http://www.kairoscourse.org/) where in one of the video presentations Don Richardson provides a brilliant explanation. Jesus’ audience, he suggests, is NOT the woman, but his disciples who still fail to grasp that Jesus is an ALL NATIONS Messiah. The written text doesn’t convey any signals which may have been communicated by Jesus’ eyes to indicate a friendly banter. Jesus’ conversation with the woman, drawing out her response, provides a perfect object lesson to draw the disciples out from their ethnocentric perspective.

  54. Theresa Gillikin says:

    She should be removed immediately!! Her and anyone else in leadership, especially Bishops, that practice and teach things so blatantly against God’s Word! That is what is wrong with our church! “Embracing” this and other sinful lifestyles! We are called to be set apart from the world! If God’s Word goes against what you are saying and doing….its NOT His Word that changes, it’s you that needs to change!

  55. John Smith says:

    I’m not big into columns that start with rhetorical questions.

    “Do those who have supported and defended the efforts to make Dr. Karen Oliveto a bishop in the United Methodist Church love the cause of LGBTQ liberation more than they love Jesus Christ?”

  56. John Smith says:

    Perhaps the problems affecting the UMC find their origin in this statement: “Such sloppiness, if due to genuine confusion or simple lack of carefulness, could be understandable from a layperson who lacks much deep instruction in the faith.”
    When we consider the incarnation and deity of Jesus to be beyond the capability of the layperson, (something grasped by the uneducated, illiterate peasants and slaves of the early church and beyond) it shows we expect the laity to lack instruction in fundamental christian concepts because:
    1) We don’t expect the elders to teach basic doctrine or perhaps to be even capable of teaching it.
    2) We don’t think the laity is capable of understanding basic concepts.
    3) We find this situation acceptable.
    4) We cannot draw a straight line between clergy unwilling to teach, to laity unable to learn, to a denomination completely muddled on sin, justification and sanctification so that it sanctions or embraces anything and only gets in an uproar once “the gays are in the house.”
    Then we wonder why no one understands we are “standing for biblical standards” and not simply fighting about sex.

    • John, I do think you are onto something there, with your points 1-4. But while I am all for pastors talking to potential members to see if they have enough very BASIC commitment to Christian faith and life so that they can say the vows with integrity, I’m not in favor of requiring a really extensive level of “much deep instruction in the faith” before someone can even become a member. The fact is that a lot of laypeople use sloppy language about “God and Jesus” as if these two two entirely different entities. Ideally, any congregation should be regularly drawing in new believers. The problems come when people stay in spiritual infancy after years of membership (or were rushed into membership too early in the first place). Of course, going as far as Oliveto did, especially from an ordained clergy, let alone a would-be bishop and former seminary instructor, is very different from a new Christian simply being rhetorically sloppy.

  57. Aubrey H Burrow says:

    I understand there may WRT been confusion WRT the generalized decision last year however with her new specifics herein she can now be named heretic and your basis for a trial to procede. Truly my feeling is this secular nation should encourage using “same sex unions” with any IRS style benefits and sease the use of “marriage” as a descriptor . . . Leaving the church alone with our classical belief “marriage” is domain exclusive for one man and one women. And end that story there. BUCKY

  58. Randy Kanipe says:

    Precisely what we have come to expect from the ranks of dishonest, secular humanists. Elevating personal pride in social/sexual/theological deviance, over and above Sacred Covenant with God and colleagues, is the height of narcissism. (Becoming an elder while living as a practicing lesbian)

    A church body that has been blinded by secular humanism to the point that they elect such a person to the office of Bishop, is an indication of the level of spiritually toxic theology that has been embraced by the whole. But then again, Jim Jones was able to convince 980 people to kill themselves by drinking cyanide laced cool aid as ‘Holy Communion.’

    Personally, I refuse to drink the Cool Aid that is being offered as ‘grace’ by this deviant branch of the church. That evil is still around in this world is no surprise. That we have allowed the spirit of evil to usurp our highest positions of sacred responsibility IS surprising. That such usurpation has gone unchecked, unchallenged and remains in power is perhaps the most revealing and disturbing of all.

    Simply put – Karen is wrong on many points. I will not refer to her as Bishop, because she is not one. I will not refer to her as Rev. because she is not one. Indeed, I will surely be castigated and vilified for such seemingly insensitive remarks, but I refuse to acknowledge a lie as the truth. “The ‘queen’ has no clothes!”

  59. Jon Burk says:

    Great commentary, John. It is no surprise that Karen should be so blind as she is still in the world. Her fruits bare witness to this. Someone with spiritual discernment would not have accepted the bishop post as it caused dissension. Her words and speeches bare out the bad fruit that she puts forth. Yet repentance is still possible for her, but she needs to hurry toward God. As do many leaders within the Western jurisdiction. Repent, Karen! Come Holy Spirit!

  60. Michelle Hall says:

    This woman is grossly misleading the body of Christ. Those in spiritual authority over God’s people will stand before God to give an account for every child of God that they mislead…
    God will be the judge and it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the Living God. Hebrews 10:31

  61. Tommy Ferrell says:

    “Jesus reforming himself in relation to God?” Plain heresy! Nicean Christology, The Scriptures, and Immutability all are foreign to this Dominie in grey!

  62. Mitch Reed says:

    Good article.
    Mark 7:24-30 – The Syrophoenician Woman is a difficult passage.
    In a sermon this summer, I gave an alternate explanation of how to understand it than Oliveto (or the other alternatives mentioned).
    If anyone wants to look into it: https://soundcloud.com/immanuel-downtown-zv/immanuel-8-13-17-crumbs

  63. Dan says:

    I would like to make two points; one a book recommendation and a second, very important point as to why no heresy trial of a UMC bishop will ever occur.

    First, I highly recommend reading, multiple times, the book “The Cruely of Heresy: An Affirmation of Christian Orthodoxy” by retired bishop C. FitzSimons Allison. It clearly delineates the ancient heresies and how they keep reappearing.

    Second, please remember the heretic UMC bishop C. Joseph Sprague. In a lecture he gave at a UMC seminary he proclaimed the virgin birth of Jesus a myth, and also said that Jesus’ resurrection was not a bodily one, clearly denying the ancient creeds. Heresy charges were filed against him and then promptly dismissed. Here is a quote from a Chicago Tribune article at the time:

    “… the investigators concluded that Sprague was “obedient to Christ’s teachings.” Noting that Methodism historically has been accepting of personal differences, they suggested that a dialogue be opened between the bishop and his opponents.

    ‘The openness sought cannot be achieved under threat of charges or in a Church trial,’ wrote Bishop Bruce Ough of the West Ohio Conference.”

    So if this happened over ten years ago, what makes you think it will be any different this time?

    • Carrie says:

      “Ichabod, Ichabod”, has long been the name over many of our UMC churches. We have to ask and implore , “Why do the bishops have no accountability to the people?” The last General Conference votes should have settled this and made no provision for Karen’s further dark and pagan teachings. About Mr. Sprague; my family and I were part of a growing church which he personally ran into the ground and split 80/20 because he stood in their pulpit and proclaimed that as far as he understood, there was no virgin birth or a resurrection from the dead. The pain he inflicted financially and spiritually upon that congregation was not a loving act of God. Is there ” A way forward ” when no one seems to be accountable to anyone, much less to the Eternal, Unchanging, I AM, Who alone is TRUTH and draws lines between good and evil, right and wrong?

  64. Jagdev Singh Gill says:

    Please God end the world soon.
    This is already the planet of the Apes, with brute animals in human firm spouting gibberish, eating their own feces and flinging said poop at us.
    God help us all.

  65. Jessie Smith says:

    What has happened to the U.M.C.? To let this woman be a Bishop, she is a lesbian, twisting the words of the Gospel and turning Jesus into a politically motivated milksop. Next thing she will be doing is performing “white magic” in her churches. Cast her out and do some type of excommunication (or whatever the U.M.C. does) Do it with love and tell her why but she is likely to tell the church they are heretics.

  66. Penny says:

    Jesus was very clear about His identity. If you reject who He is you will not receive the Grace He has freely offered. “I and the Father are one.” “He who has seen me has seen the Father.” “And when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and among the lampstands was someone like a son of man, dressed in a robe reaching down to his feet and with a golden sash around his chest. The hair on his head was white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire. His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters. In his right hand he held seven stars, and coming out of his mouth was a sharp, double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance. When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. Then he placed his right hand on me and said: ‘Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.'”

  67. James Howell says:

    I am a Uniting Methodist. I would frame my view (not really mine, but orthodox Christianity’s view) of Jesus very differently from Bishop Oliveto. But what would a “denunciation” (the kind of thing some Christians seem to enjoy issuing) offer? Were I to “denounce” every bit of sideways or kooky theology any Methodist utters, I would be busy 24/7 and couldn’t get my job done. Uniting Methodists clearly stand for sound, orthodox theology. If I don’t pounce on… whom? a neighbor who preached a Pelagian sermon, or a friend who grossly misrepresented the Trinity as a cloverleaf, or an angry conservative Methodist with zero grasp on humility, etc., does that make me and Uniting Methodists less… orthodox? Methodist? Uniting?

    • John Lomperis says:

      With all due respect, Rev. Howell, someone occupying (illegitimately) the bishop’s office is not merely “any Methodist.” Particularly when multiple leaders of “Uniting Methodists” have gone out of their ways to publicly support and defend Oliveto being in that position.

      This is not about denouncing people or arguing with folk who are not church leaders, but about whether or not the LGBTQ cause trumps Jesus Christ.

      Couldn’t you at least agree that, regardless of sexuality, (1) no one with such beliefs should be elevated to the office of bishop in our church, and (2) that there should be accountability and discipline for Oliveto using the bishop’s office to promote these beliefs? I would really welcome any chance to work together if we have common ground here.

  68. Claire says:

    I am having once again a great problem with what the United Methodist Church does with our money that our churches give every month. We fund all manner of leftist causes and people. It is a giant bureaucracy that insults its supporters with godless leaders and causes.

  69. john says:

    We as an ethnic UMC church in U.S., had a clergy (+ lay leaders) meeting regarding this issue in Chicago. The decision was made not separate from UMC. Mainly, the clergies are afraid of loosing their benefits and entitlements from UMC. I am not certain how many bishops and clergies stands for the truth

  70. Debbie says:

    Come out of ALL churches that to not teach God’s Word. The Mennonite Church USA is ordaining gay’s and lesbians now. Their theology is so similar to the liberal left it is hard to tell the difference between the political party and this denomination. Do not allow your children and grandchildren to be under the spiritual authority of those in rebellion to God. Any church that ordains women has been under the influence of the feminist agenda for decades. It’s time to wake up and decide whether to contend for the faith or to go along with apostates. Satan is working in our churches but we don’t have to put up with it. Stop giving them your money. Find a church that teaches the Word.

  71. Harold Gielow says:

    If you want to remain in the Methodist church and struggle within it to correct its current doctrinal errors as you see them, there is a forcing function to get church leadership to act to enforce the discipline. Judicial Council decision 1341 clearly stated that the consecration of Oliveto was an act of the entire church and that it was illegal. That means, it was an act of your conference. That is, pure and simple, a breach of the trust clause every UM church has under which church property is held in trust for the benefit of the Methodist church acting under the rules and discipline of the church. Local church trustees across Methodism should, actually have a legal responsibility to do so, notify their conferences that they are in potential breach of trust and, therefore, stand to lose their benefits. If the church hierarchy truly wants us to work together for a solution until 2019, then they should have no problem waiving their right to a breach of trust timeliness defense should local churches agree not to litigate within this time period. Such notification would put leadership on notice that continued inaction to enforce the trust in this time period worsens their legal position, a loss in litigation for breach of trust by the church judicatory setting a precedent which could open the flood gates of churches leaving, with their assets. I don’t believe church leadership will move to enforce the discipline in this time period unless they are compelled to do so. This is a means every local board of trustees has to compel leadership to act, if only out of self interest. Per JC decision, every conference is in breach of trust. A civil court need delve no further into doctrinal issues than to, in complete deference, accept the opinion of the churches’ highest judicial body, then move to civil trust law if litigation were later pursued. Better than litigation, and even more compelling, would be to get a civil declaratory judgement that the trust(s) are in breach based on the JC decision. Simply complaining about the moral decay in the church does little at this point. Do something about it. These are actions real and impactful that each local church can do, and at very little cost. Each trustee has standing to inform their conference of the potential breach and to file a petition for declaratory judgement. Requesting a tolling agreement would be an act, in good faith, seeking to work together until the called general conference without giving up your rights due to statutes if limitations on breach of trust litigations.

  72. Robert Walden says:

    This is exactly the reason I do not attend UMC services. Allowing individuals like this to be in leadership of a denomination/ district or church is wrong, wrong, wrong.

  73. Cathy Byrd says:

    I have written about Oliveto’s scriptural heresy in my weblog and on facebook.

    http://disciplerofself.com/uncategorized/unwinding-heretics-spin/

    But I want to note for the record here this additional thought:

    I have delighted in the view of Jesus’ humanity in Luke 2:52- “And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.” It comforted me to realize that all the ways in which I and others had to grow- intellectually, emotionally (“wisdom”), physically, morally (“stature”), spiritually (“favor with God”), and socially (“favor with man”)- were ways in which Jesus had to grow, too. It confirmed to me that Jesus is, indeed, in all ways, like those he came to save and can understand us completely, empathizing and interceding for us. The difference, however, is that Jesus did it perfectly (in keeping with God’s perfect plan). Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit from the womb so the Holy Spirit was directing his growth and forming him into the perfect instrument of the Christ that he was. And so, in Luke 42-47 we see Jesus as a 12 year old astounding the religious leaders in the Temple of Jerusalem with his knowledge and insights. Then from that one verse, Luke 2:52, we see nothing more of Jesus’ life until he begins his formal ministry with his baptism by John in Luke 3 at age 30. Many of us, even those in ministry, have to continue to be honed, refined, and transformed by the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit all of our lives. The divinity of Jesus Christ and his intimacy as a part of the Triune Godhead, impartial and with a clear-eyed understanding of his role in the salvation of humanity apparently by the time he was 12 or certainly soon after as his maturing reason gave him the capacity for understanding, did not have to learn to not be a bigot. Liberals make a big deal about children NOT being bigoted, loving and accepting of one another and that such behavior is learned through the corrupting influence of one’s culture. Jesus was enveloped in Jewish culture, but he also had the protective enveloping of the Holy Spirit’s care throughout his life to protect him from the corrupting influence of that culture, hence, his sinlessness. To impugn his mature character as bigoted and having to be taught not to discriminate as other Jews did is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit’s presence and work in his life. Jesus repeatedly said to “come as a little child”….without the corrupting influence of the culture, with the trusting nature of a child, with gentleness and interest in knowing all that one can learn.
    ” And when He became twelve, they went up there (to Jerusalem) according to the custom of the Feast; and as they were returning, after spending the full number of days, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. But His parents were unaware of it, but supposed Him to be in the caravan, and went a day’s journey; and they began looking for Him among their relatives and acquaintances. When they did not find Him, they returned to Jerusalem looking for Him. Then, after three days they found Him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the teachers, both listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard Him were amazed at His understanding and His answers.”

    OK. I think I’m done with this. I have nothing left for Karen Oliveto but pity and to pray for mercy for her because of her ignorance……the same as Jesus had for the Jerusalem Pharisees in his interaction with them in Gennesaret just before this lesson for his disciples with the Syro-Phoenician woman in Tyre/Sidon, “But He answered and said, “Every plant which My heavenly Father did not plant shall be uprooted. Let them alone; they are blind guides of the blind. And if a blind man guides a blind man, both will fall into a pit.” (Matthew 15: 13-14) Thank you for your patience.

  74. Lions says:

    Whenever people say “It is not about the money”, the reality is “It is always about the money”. The UMC is an institution that has been around a long time. The UMC started as a “movement” but once it got big and global, it became an “institution”. In the life cycle of institutions, when an institution is threatened by failed leadership and decline, the leadership tends to focus on “self preservation” and “protection of assets”, rather than expansion, or dealing with the internal causes of decay. Let’s pray that the Council on Bishops of the UMC will be inspired by the Holy Spirit to courageously confront the satanic efforts which are designed to infiltrate the UMC with heresy, depravity, and apostasy.

    • Cathy Byrd says:

      They, COB, won’t. Too many of them are part of the problem

    • Judy Bailey says:

      Amen! I am embarrassed to say I am a UM because I feel betrayed by our weak leadership that has stood by and allowed this Evil to fester and be destroyed from within. They could not stand on the Word of God or our Discipline that defines our belief in the Triune God of our Holy Bible. So many have led people astray and the day will come when they are held accountable. Praise be to God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.y

  75. Ellen T. McKinsey says:

    I served for 40 years at the side of my pastor husband in The United Methodist Church. I am now widowed, but I’m proud to say he proclaimed the Gospel! Now I am about to become a member of one of the largest groups of people that I know of.
    It’s called, “I Used To Be A Methodist!” … If only someone out there would unite the lay people so we could begin to put our resources together and demand action. I know about the Way Forward and Good News … but even there, I don’t have a personal voice. They like my money, but do not give the average person voice! Thank you for letting me say my piece. I wish Good News and other groups like them would let the lay people express themselves and then print it. I have found your words a great comfort. Now I can see there are still Methodist people who value The Word Of God and believe in Jesus as Savior and Lord! God Bless Our Church! JESUS IS LORD!!!!!

  76. R says:

    Such viciousness doesn’t sound Christian to me…Why do you hate this woman so much? Take a look at the Log in your own eye…

    • Palamas says:

      R says:

      “Such viciousness doesn’t sound Christian to me…”

      Viciousness? Since when is it “vicious” to point out that a leader of the church is teaching non-Christian theology? I guess Paul, John and others who criticized–sometimes in extremely harsh, “judgmental” terms–were “vicious.”

  77. Tom says:

    The facebook post has also been archived at http://archive.is/NTbiV

  78. William says:

    John Lomperis apparently had some time on his “juicy” little hands so he decided to stir up some more hatred among his fellow United Methodists. It actually should be called “Evil, not Juicy, Ecumenism.”

  79. Jeanene Williams says:

    I finally learned to forget about the various denominations, find a minister that preaches Jesus and His grace and grace alone, with reference to the scriptures, and to follow Jesus, not man. It can be done. I did it and I am greatly blessed, highly favored and deeply loved. Free in Jesus and happier than I have ever been in my 78 years.

  80. Donald Earl Yates says:

    My wife and have contemplated leaving our local UMC for sometime now. The gospel of Jesus Christ is not foremost in the sermons coming from the pulpit. How can lost souls find the path to Jesus if our own pastors are not fully equipped to tell the truth of the love and mercy of Jesus Christ. God gave us choice – what do we choose Jesus or the road to damnation?

  81. Roy Hollingsworth says:

    Years ago the UMC-GBCS (so they called themselves then) had a blog on their website where their people could write opinions and we the benighted could reply and dissent if we wanted to. That blog is long gone, since they cannot tolerate having dissenting opinions appearing on their website.

    The following is a response I wrote to a GBCS intern’s essay on The Syrophoenician Woman that also took the approach that Jesus saw he had been wrong and changed his mind. The phrase the essay used was “the very heart of God was changed.”

    My response:
    It is a shame that so many people take the square peg of Scripture and hammer it into the round hole of their socio-political ideology. The result is that it is no longer Scripture. Please let me explain.

    A great deal of what Our Lord said and did during his earthly life was for the teaching and preparation of the disciples, those who he knew would be carrying the message on. The incident with the Syrophoenician woman is no exception. Unless you reject the divinity of Jesus, you should have no problem understanding that he knew perfectly well in advance what the woman was going to ask him and how she would respond to his retort, which was just what the Jewish disciples would have expected him to say, i.e., what I have is for the Jews first, not for you “dogs.” The purpose was for the disciples to witness his final affirmation of her faith and learn from it that the Gospel is for all, not just some people, and because of that, all should be respected.

    It is a lesson for us today as well, but not in the way you are suggesting. Jesus made no error, nobody subverted him, he did not “relent” and, above all, “the very heart of God” was NOT CHANGED. When you assert that Jesus “listened to the wisdom of the broken and oppressed, and finally allowed himself to be changed,” you are misrepresenting Scripture.

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