2019 UMC General Conference

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Foundry United Methodist

March 8, 2019

Foundry United Methodist Mourns Traditional Plan Passage

Last Thursday night, Foundry United Methodist Church hosted a prayer service in light of the passage of the Traditional Plan at the UMC General Conference (read about the traditional plan here). Foundry officials hoped for the passage of the One Church Plan (OCP) that was voted down last week (read about the One Church Plan here). Prompted by sadness at the General Conference results, the congregation hosted an open prayer service for those expressing hurt at the decision and for the future of the denomination.

The 7 p.m. service was well attended by participants who donned rainbow colored prayer stoles and scarves in an effort to affirm those who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender or Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ) and to dissent from the General Conference decision tightening enforcement measures that ban same-sex weddings in the church and non-celibate LGBTQ clergy from officiating.

“Ain’t gonna let your hatred turn me around… I’m gonna keep on talkin, keep on walkin, marchin’ up to freedom land,” congregants sang in the words to the song “the journey isn’t over” by United Methodist composer Mark Miller. The song was one of several which emphasized social justice themes. Many made no mention of Christ.

Foundry Senior Pastor Ginger Gaines-Cirelli read a letter from Baltimore-Washington Episcopal Area Bishop LaTrelle Easterling, who was at General Conference supporting the One Church Plan. Easterling wrote to the congregation about her sadness, sharing plans to convene with other area bishops to discuss how the result came about and where the church should go from here.

Easterling affirmed feelings of pain, anger, and a sense of rejection that LGBT-identifying people expressed following the conference’s outcome.

“As I read the gospel, Christ did not address same-gender love, he did not reject people based on who they are,” Easterling wrote. “As I read the gospel, I understand Christ spoke against the powerful using their power to marginalize others. Human beings are created in the image and likeness of God… Every human is welcome in the household of faith. I pray you feel the anointing of acceptance, welcome, and inclusion in your churches.”

“We will heal together, we will serve together, we will love together, we will rise together,” Easterling concluded. The letter stated her disappointment in General Conference and her willingness to discuss where the church should go from here. It also upheld her belief in the work of congregations affiliated with the Reconciling Ministries Network (RMN), an unofficial LGBTQ caucus operating within the United Methodist Church. 

T.C. Morrow then spoke as a witness for the hurt she felt from the conference decision. Morrow, an openly partnered lesbian in a same-sex marriage, unsuccessfully pursued a position in ordained ministry within the United Methodist Church for years. She has been a member of Foundry since 2002. She also spoke of her gratitude for the RMN-affiliated congregation at Foundry, but she did not shy away from expressing her disappointment in the decision that was made.

In regards to General Conference, Morrow told of her call to stay in the church for now. She acknowledged that some families will leave the United Methodist Church because of the decision that has been made. She invited people to be in conversation with one another about what is best for them. She did not mention any denomination split or Foundry leaving the United Methodist denomination, but she made it clear that it was acceptable for people to leave if they disagreed so strongly with the Traditional Plan.

The congregation took communion and continued to pray for healing and restoration for the church. Gaines-Cirelli concluded the service by reminding the congregation of churches and people standing with them against the General Conference outcome. She commended those whom she said are resisting evil, injustice, and oppression.

There was no mention of Foundry as an institution breaking away from United Methodism. It is clear that they are experiencing sadness, frustration, and looking for a way to change what happened in St. Louis. The entire service is available to watch on Foundry’s Facebook page. 


58 Responses to Foundry United Methodist Mourns Traditional Plan Passage

  1. Translation: God-mocking, world-loving non-Christians throw a tantrum. Lather, rinse, repeat.

    “As I read the gospel, Christ did not address same-gender love, he did not reject people based on who they are”

    What a liar. Jesus agrees with ALL of scripture. He affirmed the OT and authorized the OT. Emphasis added for the “Christian” Left wolves who deny the simplest biological and Christian truths: He who CREATED them from the beginning made them MALE and FEMALE, and said, ‘Therefore a MAN shall leave HIS FATHER and HIS MOTHER and hold fast to HIS WIFE.

    Note how Jesus defeats Darwinian evolution, oxymoronic “same-sex marriage,” same-sex parenting, “transgender” and polygamy arguments in one simple passage. No true follower of him should disagree on any of those topics.

    Matthew 19:4–5 He answered, “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’?”

    Jesus is still asking them that question today, and the answer from the “Christian” Left is, “No, we haven’t read that” — or, rather, “We read that but didn’t like it so we ‘know’ you didn’t really say that.”

    • Diane says:

      I’m not a United Methodist, but am among the millions who have a family member who is loved, accepted and a blessing to our family and others just as he is. When I was a child, I was told God’s Love was greater than any other. Maybe we’re talking about different gods, as the One I worship has more live than yours.

      I am also divorced – my husband cheated on me. Because I’m in the loop of confidentiality among friends and family who are lgbtq, let me assure you that your traditional plan is anti-family. Because you believe gay people are less than, those gay folk who participate in a tradional plan are most likely closeted and married to someone of the opposite sex. Most mixed-orientation marriages end in divorce when the deceptive spouse can no longer live the deception and comes out as gay to an innocent, unsuspecting straight spouse.

      Your theology is destructive. Thousands of mixed-orientation marriages have ended in divorce. I know one straight wife who took her life after husband came out as gay. I know UM clergy who are gay and married – and cheating on the side. As long as you pretend that everyone is straight or should be, you will have deception.

      As to the poster who quotes, “God made them, male and female”…well, yes, that’s literally true. God created intersex folks who are biologically male AND female. Creation is not strictly male OR female. Intersex people account for the same percentage of the population as redheads.

      I find it telling that conservatives don’t want to mention God created intersex folks – the Bible doesn’t say a thing about God creating intersex people, but the God of creation surprises.

      Sorry to say, but your God is manipulative, creating people and giving them tremendous spiritual gifts and then damning them. Not a nice god you worship, certainly not a god of good news!

  2. Palamas says:

    I look at that picture, and I see a congregation worshiping homosexuality rather than the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. In that context, the picture of Jesus on the back wall is positively blasphemous.

    • William says:

      Traditionalists, who’ve been to often in denial, are now seeing how radical these liberal forces have become in our denomination. This LGBT focused movement is evolving into a cult at worst or pure idol worship at best. If progressives do not move forward with a new denomination, it is certainly time for the General Conference to appoint a “Commission For An Amicable Separation.

    • William says:

      I am stunned more each time I see that photo. Draping the communion table in rainbow coverings obviously tells what they are worshipping, while test of the sanctuary draped in their idol colors. Blasphemy‼️

    • Diane says:

      But you conservative United Methodists absolutely adore and celebrate homosexuals as long as you play pretend like a bunch of little kids and think everyone in your heterosexist orbit is heterosexual unless you’re told otherwise.

      Got news for you – I’ve watched hundreds of United Methodists who love their pastors – and those pastors are closeted gay people. You love and adore your gay pastors as long as you believe they’re straight.

      Hypocrites you are!

      • Larry Kreh says:

        I was married in 1978 by a UMC pastor in California who was openly gay. He was a good pastor to our family and a friend in hard times. I also have a close niece who is a lesbian and a close friend from my college years who came out soon thereafter. Yet despite the stereotypes of traditionalists, I still believe that homosexual practice is not the intentional will of God. So yes, I support the Traditional Plan.
        But this issue is only the flashpoint of a deeper theological gap in the UMC. There were many hurt people in St. Louis and not all were one side. Traditional Plan supporters have been attacked as being hateful their (our) very character and integrity challenged. Relationships have been irrevocably ruptured. The only positive thing about GC19 is the exposure of how deep the gap that exists between traditionalists and progressives. It is time to move our separate ways.

  3. David Miller says:

    Where are the reports of Evangelicals rejoicing that God’s truth has been upheld? Why do Evangelical leader allow progressives to get the initiative in thIs.

    • Lee D. Cary says:

      “Why do Evangelical leader allow progressives to get the initiative in this?”

      Because adults, firm in their convictions, tend not to gloat when their principles are confirmed by a fair, majority vote.

      • Diane says:

        Your “mature” evangelical heterosexist conviction is everyone is heterosexual until told otherwise. I get to laugh at you hypocrites every time you shake your closeted gay pastor’s hand and his unsuspecting straight wife, as you profusely thank them for their ministry of Godly inspiration.

        I laugh as you beat false witness. God forgive you conservatives, for you know not what you do or what reality is.

  4. td says:

    One of the huge problems in the umc is that we have clergy who insist on teaching their personal beliefs instead of teaching the church’s beliefs. It is irresponsible.

    It really isn’t right for them to blame the majority for keeping the millenia long held teachings of Christianity.

    • Diane says:

      One of the huge problems in the UMC is conservative folk who think their closeted gay pastors (and there’s no shortage of them) are straight people.

  5. Lee D. Cary says:

    “…Baltimore-Washington Episcopal Area Bishop LaTrelle Easterling, who was at General Conference supporting the One Church Plan. Easterling wrote to the congregation about her sadness, sharing plans to convene with other area bishops to discuss how the result came about and where the church should go from here.”

    Someone tell the bishops that the future is not up to them to decide. Please do it soon.

    “The letter stated her disappointment in General Conference and her willingness to discuss where the church should go from here.”

    Isn’t it wonderful that the bishop is willing to discuss “where the church should go from here”? Wow! Such openness.

    “…she (Foundry Church’s pastor) made it clear that it was acceptable for people to leave if they disagreed so strongly with the Traditional Plan.”

    What amazing flexibility! That church members would be granted permission to leave if they wanted to. No hostages will be held.

    “She (Gaines-Cirelli) commended those whom she said are resisting evil, injustice, and oppression.”

    And there you have it – one of operation tactics of Saul Alinsky: Demonize the opposition. All you delegates who support/ed the Traditional Plan are evil, unjust, and oppressive. Shame on you.

    “It is clear that they are experiencing sadness, frustration, and looking for a way to change what happened in St. Louis.”

    Understandable. The plan to change the outcome will come at the 2020 General Conference. And if it fails there, at the 2024 General Conference. And if it fails there…etc.

    Face it: Progressives never, ever, give up. They are relentless when they’ve become irrevocably self-assured of the righteousness of their cause.
    .

    • Diane says:

      It is clear that conservatives don’t have a clue – have no idea how many closeted gay people are serving your churches as clergy and laity. God’s joke is on heterosexist conservatives.

      All those folk who’ve come out as gay in your church were once closeted folk you loved because you had the audacity to believe everyone is heterosexual till you’re told otherwise. Got news for conservatives – there’s no shortage of closeted gay folk among you who’ve not come out, at least not yet.

      • Ted says:

        Diane, I know this isn’t the Christian thing to say, but trying to reason with you as seen by your responses on this site, indicates it would be like mud-wrestling with a pig. The rest of us get dirty, but you like the mud. Constantly slinging mud, claiming you know “so many” closeted UMC pastors…..don’t you ever get tired of the lies ? You would appear to be a magna cum laude graduate from the DNC Academy for Morons.

  6. Clayton Croy says:

    I am reminded of Senator Howard Dean’s comment (and before him Senator Paul Wellstone) that he represented “the Democratic wing of the Democratic party,” i.e., those who affirmed the classic values of the party and wouldn’t compromise for the sake of fashion. The United Methodist Church has been “taken over” by those who represent the Christian wing of the Christian religion, those who affirm the principles of historic Christianity whether they are fashionable or not. There will be turmoil and membership loss in the short term, but in the long term the decisions made at the Special General Conference will foster the health and growth of United Methodism.

  7. senecagriggs says:

    Will the progressives leave and start their own denomination or will they pursue a “scorched earth” policy?

    [ not a Methodist but following the turmoil closely ]

  8. Carolyn Huntsman says:

    Only

  9. LAS says:

    Interesting that in the US the One Church plan has majority support. And the traditionalists have to rely on the African delegation, along with the help of outside “political” groups to defeat the One Church Plan. So immigrants are turned away at our borders for fear of changing our culture and history, yet people are ok with non-Americans making the decisions on the doctrines of the Methodist Church?

  10. Pudentiana says:

    Have you noticed how many female clergy are proponents of gay marriage and ordination? Do you realize that the Sophia movement has simply gone underground? This is a spiritual issue while others perceive it as political. This is a different liturgy than that of the Christian Church. It is idolatrous.

  11. Bill T says:

    Had the same “grief” expressed by our pastor toward the decision. Our Congregation is a mix so she has stupidly taken sides. She parrots Adam Hamilton.
    Picture if they won instead. It would have been becasue of the Holy Spirit. So they are saying it was not God that moved the Conference to uphold the 2000 years of Christian thought. Obviously, to them, Satan has been running the church including the Conference and they need to turn it around.

    The Bible has shown this heresy. It is Gnosticism full blown. The separation of the body and the spirit. They preach “God wants us to be happy, so we can do anything with our bodies, and look how loving we are.” Or as our Pastor said, “If a loving gay couple came to me and and they were committed Christians would any of you turn me in if I married them?”
    My family decided that our tithe was better used in a traditional church so we just left.

    • Jim says:

      Bill you made the right decision. May God bless you and your family for your faithfulness.

    • Julie Bennett says:

      It is a shame people spend years studying the Bible, only to be told we were taught wrong. For those who can read, the hypocrisy screams. Sorry, but political correctness does not belong in church. There are many denominations that welcome LGBTQ clergy and marriages; the UMC does NOT need to become one. Leave well enough alone if the BOD doesn’t suit you!

    • Diane says:

      But your traditional church will always be birthing and nurturing gay kids. And you will love and cherish them, encourage them to be leaders and pastors as long as they pretend for your sake. I remember my 1950s pastor and his lovely wife. He loved drama and handiwork (embroidery). As a teenager I dated their son. We’d sit late into the evening while his mother went to bed alone. She’d cll out to her husband, “Bob, are you coming to bed?” Their son angrily told me his dad always waited till his mother was asleep before finallynreyiring for the night. Everyone knew our pastor was gay, but because he was married to a woman, it was easy to let him pass. None knew the sham and heartache I witnessed.
      Then there was a pastor of the church I attended in the 1980s. A gay friend has disclosed to me that my pastor was a closeted gay man. I remember his lovely wife sighing as she watched her husband shake each parishioner’s hand every Sunday. She confided her hurt to a mutual friend, “Yet he never touches me”. Another sham marriage that allowed the condemning homophobes to love their pastor.

      While that last situation was going on in one mainline church, the next door UMC congregation loved their talented youth minister and his talented wife. Another sham marriage – he was having sexual hook-ups with another gay friend of mine. Cheating on his wife.

      So….what’s to be had by moving to a conservative church? Closeted gay people that you’ll punish if they “come out” and the sham mixed-orientation marriages that conservatives praise as wholesome models of Methodist family values. Wow! That’s what you get in a conservative church.

  12. David says:

    People will recall that the Traditional Plan passed only by 53% to 47%. Nearly half the church is unhappy with that result. The only way to avoid dissension is to aim for more consensus by having a higher vote threshold.

    I fail to see how “Darwin evolution” enters into the discussion unless it is intended to mean changes in society.

    • Lee D. Cary says:

      “The only way to avoid dissension is to aim for more consensus by having a higher vote threshold.”

      Calling for a change in the rules after a loss is the patterned response of Progressives when they lose.

      E.g., on a national scale, after the last U.S. General Election pressure mounted for getting rid of the Electoral College system.

      E.g., after the victory of Brexit, those against it continue efforts to undercut and reverse the people’s decision.

      It’s predictable.

      • David says:

        There were discussion of getting rid of the Electoral College 60 years years. This is nothing new. Originally, US senators were not elected by the people either.

        • Lee D. Cary says:

          Far beyond 60 years, the Elector College was debated at the Constitutional Convention, David, where its adoption was moved by James Wilson – who, BTW, became the first Justice of the Supreme Court to go to jail (for indebtedness).

          But have you not noticed, David, that in recent times the College is challenged by those who lose a presidential election, even after receiving a plurality of the votes? Such challenges are the losers’ last gambit.

  13. Lee D. Cary says:

    There’s an elephant in the room of this debate that continues to be ignored.

    When the delegates from Africa, and elsewhere, but mostly Africa, are tagged as the deciding votes against the LGBTQAI+ agenda, that tag carries thinly-veiled ridicule from OCP advocates.

    When the Secretary of the GC came down from the dais onto the floor of the conference and passionately accused unidentified people of offering money for votes, who doesn’t know she was accusing delegates, from mostly Africa, of being bribed to vote for the Traditional Church Plan?

    In the immediately previous post on this site, it was noted that “…Hamilton referred to a ‘group’ that ‘allied allies in particular in the developing world’ and ‘made the case that this was not going to be good for their churches if they chose to support this One Church Plan.’” Who doesn’t see the reference to the “developing world” as mostly African Methodists, whose votes were, he clearly alleges, subject to being influence-leveraged by the WCA? Without stated evidence, both briber and bribed are therein accused.

    When a comment posted to an article before St. Louis derisively referred to these “international allies,” who didn’t assume what that meant even then?

    And, is there any lack of clarity in this statement attributed to Liberian seminary president Jerry Kulah delivered at a General Conference evangelical breakfast? He said, “We are not children in need of Western enlightenment when it comes to our sexual ethics.”

    Progressives once heralded the inclusiveness of an international denomination – right up until inclusiveness meant the “allies” were free to vote their hearts and minds. And when they did that, presto, they become the bane of OCP proponents.

    Please, somebody tell me why this doesn’t amount to a prima facie case of racism based on self-declared cultural supremacy?

  14. Tracy says:

    The photograph above says it all. LGBTQRST… IS their religion. And Jesus is somewhere in the background.

    • William says:

      It is evolving into what looks very much like a cult with LGBT as the god. Cult followers are blinded by their compulsive obsessions. On second look, that photo is scary. They are in a Christian church practicing blatant blasphemy. This thing is certainly now to the point of no return. This building, Hamilton’s building, and others certainly provide the facilities to launch a new progressive movement called “church”.

      • Lee D. Cary says:

        What you suggest, William, makes sense. But it’s unlikely to happen – progressives launching a new movement – and here’s why.

        The history of the progressive moment in America frequently follows two patterns:

        First, early on, in the secular environment, progressives formed organized associations of academic discipline-based “experts” in silo venues like history, economics, and psychology. Many still exist. The AMA is one example. The organization’s membership represents about 17% of the doctors and medical students in the U.S., but many people think that percentage much greater. AMA has great PR.

        But in the religion environment, it’s much easier for progressives to take-over a pre-existing organization. The assault begins by capturing the academe (church colleges and seminaries) and then incrementally spreading into the super-structure of a denomination’s national support structure (boards and agencies). Finally, the senior ordained leadership (bishops) – who live, and move and have their being beyond the local church as Conference HR Directors for all but the largest and most affluent congregations – become a key part of the progressive movement.

        There’s nothing nefarious about any of this, William. It’s just how progressives roll. It’s easier to capture a denomination than do a start-up on a new one.

        • TJ says:

          Absolutely. Just my view but the “traditionalists” are the more likely members to take a walk when the progressives bring a church or a conference …..or a denomination to the tipping point. I fear we are about there in many UMC conferences.

          • Lee D. Cary says:

            TJ, the “UNBELIEVABLE” is, IMHO, nothing to be feared. And is quite believable given the state of things. Protestant denominations have multiplied like amoeba for centuries. All the while, the greater CHURCH, beyond it’s various brands, lives on.

  15. Andrew Hughes says:

    How sad to put anything before God and worship it The picture tells it all. Help us Lord!

    • William says:

      In a historic Methodist Church. They have desecrated that sanctuary. This building is no longer a church and no longer a house of God. UNBELIEVABLE.

    • Diane says:

      But you worship UMC clergy and laity as long as they pass as straight. No shortage either of sham marriages that you hold up as family role models – as long as you’re allowed to believe both spouses are straight. Conservatives worship a god of deception, others worship a God of the rainbow. Sorry you feel excluded.

      • Ted says:

        It’s no wonder you’re divorced Diane. It quite obvious you harbor a tremendous amount of hate for men …. they’ve been the source of all your problems, right? I’ve seen many women just like you .. “men haters” who suddenly believe all men are evil because their husbands left them. So now you try to project your hate upon UMC pastors …… they’re all gay, right?

  16. MikeS says:

    Those poor dears. They seem ashamed of actual Christian tradition. One wonders why they don’t just go UU or something.

    • Diane says:

      And one wonders why you’re so dependent on deception as your god. You do know that “all those poor dears” – lgbtq folk – are among you conservatives. They’re just closeted for safety among conservatives. Everywhere else, they’re openly gay. But how would you know? If you don’t frequent the places where lgbtq gather safely, you’re totally unaware of just how much pretending and receptiveness goes on in your conservative realm.

  17. Eric says:

    In my opinion both sides of the US Church have abandoned Methodism to pursue renewal more akin to political leanings than trying to fulfill Wesley’s intent. This has thrown the global church into chaos as each conference is forced to choose a side or go their own way. As a moderate I just want the Methodism I grew up with back. But I fear it is dead. I have two choices in the US. Either orthodoxy or progressive neither of which is appealing to me at all. I just want to go church and worship God. I just want to eat at a carry in dinner. I just want to celebrate communion surrounded by people who care about me. I want to study the bible. And I don’t think I am alone in this. Day after day more people who don’t have a dog in the fight will leave and stay home and watch the game on Sunday. That saddens me. I only wish that people on both sides of this issue would just break up so we can get back to normal.

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