Glide Methodist Sermon: Wealth Redistribution is “Jubilee Holy Work”

on August 6, 2020

Ridding the world of wealth gaps and conservative religion is “Jubilee holy work,” according to Bishop Yvette Flunder at Glide Memorial Methodist Church’s July 26 sermon. Besides wealth redistribution and banishing conservative Christians’ “thuggish religion,” the United Church of Christ bishop also preached the need for a universal, radically inclusive God and victim affirmation.

In the book of Leviticus, Jubilee was a pause after every 49 years where slaves were freed, crops unsewn, and debts forgiven. But according to Flunder, Jubilee is a pause where society must abolish the systems that are not working.

The first system that needs Jubilee is American wealth. Flunder argued that the wealth disparity between white and black communities shows that American capitalism is “broken at the core.” If something is so inherently broken, Jubilee requires that “we stop trying to make it work.” In the Year of Jubilee, there is no room for reform.

Reform, Flounder maintained, only mobilizes injustice. She argued that 1960s legislation and even the Obama Administration failed to address economic equality. Wealth disparity continues to persist through old housing policies and other racist laws, creating a gap where the average white family earns 10 times more than the average black family.

“The only prosperous black community” Flunder stated, “was destroyed to build a highway.”

Jubilee, Flounder insisted, means reparations and wealth redistribution. Until the gap is filled, there will be economic injustice, so she concluded that “We need to destroy it and build something in its place.”

The bishop suggested that other marginalized communities, such as Native Americans, also need economic reparations. But she did not specify where the reparations stop, closing with the suggestion that “the U.S. is indebted to many communities…and equal wealth Jubilee is holy work.”  

Flunder’s sermon took another stunning turn after claiming religion needs a Jubilee from “all things thuggish.” The “thuggish religion” she described constituted of conservative beliefs. Objective truth, a church that denies full participation privileges to LGBTQ individuals, religious freedom laws that deny women their body were among the examples Flunder used to describe a “thuggish” faith.

The bishop’s Jubilee solution for religion is to reimagine a faith that is “radically inclusive.” If humankind can come up with so many words for a sneeze, Flunder argued, then “they can find common teachings of love and healing.” If we ignore the fact that a sneeze is a uniform biological response across the human species whereas “love and healing” is an ineffably complex spiritual process, then Flunder can make sense of ubiquitous inclusivity. This is how we will “rest from all things that are thuggish.”

And if any belief shifts the “blame on the victim” by petitioning personal responsibility, then Jubilee demands silence. Flunder argued that “there are no such things as pre-existing conditions” as they are just “code-names for black and brown communities.” Drug addiction, personal irresponsibility, medical pre-conditions, or other explanations outside of systemic unfairness blames the victim and must therefore be silenced. Therefore, “we need a ‘blame the victim’ Jubilee”

Flunder’s “Jubilee” forces white people to blame themselves and other white people, a consequence promptly demonstrated by the final session in the Glide sermon. Glide congregant Linda Gold, as a “witness of whiteness,” apologized for her privilege during an “anti-racist” conversion after the sermon. Her teary-eyed testimony recounted “coming to the altar” moment after she realized her parents and ex-husband were preventing her from doing the work that she “needed to do as a privileged white woman.” Though she began and ended her testimony with self-blame, other people were the real problem. Gold concluded with the statement, “I am Glide.”  

If this is the Jubilee Flunder wants, then we can expect a “rest” of self-blame, disemboweled religion, wealth redistribution, and other Leftist policies. By abolishing conservative policies and religious beliefs every 49 years, Flunder believes that we will finally make peace on earth.

  1. Comment by Dan W on August 6, 2020 at 6:12 pm

    Thuggish Religion? How many conservative Christians burned businesses and government buildings this year? How many conservative Christians assaulted and killed others in “protests” this summer? All Christians have an obligation to minister to the less fortunate. We do not have an obligation to enable our government to steal and murder in the name of “social justice.” (Isn’t that what the Roman Empire specialized in?)

  2. Comment by Rev. Dr. Lee D Cary (ret. UM clergy) on August 6, 2020 at 8:03 pm

    (The UCC has bishops? Who knew.)

    The last UCC preacher that made news was the Reverend Jeremiah Wright. Remember him?

    He hated America, too.

    Miss Flunder’s rant doesn’t merit a thoughtful response. It’s just more hate speech.

  3. Comment by Mike on August 6, 2020 at 9:08 pm

    Anyone who wonders why the Bible forbids having women preachers need look no further.

  4. Comment by Reynolds on August 6, 2020 at 9:28 pm

    The UCC is like the Holy Roman Empire which was neither Holy, Roman or an empire. The UCC is not United, Christian or a Church. It is a dying cleft wing organization that will have no members in 20 years.

  5. Comment by Paul Morelli on August 6, 2020 at 9:50 pm

    The narrative seems strangely like “animal farm” …

  6. Comment by Tom on August 7, 2020 at 12:52 am

    This woman is nuts. Typical Marxist pronouncement from the Commie wing of the Methodist Church. This is why my wife and I stopped supporting and donating to the UMC 10 years ago.

  7. Comment by Douglas E Ehrhardt on August 7, 2020 at 2:23 am

    Our former UCC building built in1867 is now a Buddhist temple. Much better use.

  8. Comment by Steve on August 7, 2020 at 5:53 am

    Deconstructed “pastor” of deconstructed “Church of Christ” gives deconstructed “sermon” at deconstructed “Methodist church”. That’s some serious cherry picking, picking Jubilee out of Leviticus out of the entire Bible. I’m sure she would reject going back to most other ways of doing things in Leviticus. Just to name one: its nice that they released slaves (presumably not all) every 49 years, but what about the other 48? I said I’d name one, but am also mindful that she couldn’t be a pastor in Leviticus times. I went to the Glide webpage and couldn’t find one mention of Jesus. Obviously some people want church community without religion. Free food without religion will attract a crowd too. They say its about love, but an us versus them approach seems hateful to me.

  9. Comment by Kristen Paterson on August 8, 2020 at 8:34 am

    Did I miss the word Jesus in this article? Sounds a bit more like she worships Karl Marx.

  10. Comment by David on August 8, 2020 at 7:39 pm

    Glide Memorial may have begun as a Methodist Church with strong social involvement, but the second has outgrown the first. The church is a very small part of the organization. Glide has no Methodist clergy at this point and there are lawsuits with the UMC of the ownership of the building. It is really not “Methodist” in almost any sense.

  11. Comment by Donald on August 9, 2020 at 7:03 am

    I will consider this “bishop’s” proposal when I see her giving up whatever car she is currently driving for one built no later than 2001…moves into a one-room studio apartment in whatever public housing exists in her town…gives the excess clothing she has to Goodwill (one change is what I had when deployed as a Marine)…gives up whatever physical security she has protecting her from threats…turns in her computer(s) and returns to handwriting her sermons on legal pads…(add your own comments here):

  12. Comment by Jim on August 9, 2020 at 9:41 am

    Yet one more false prophet. 1 Tim 4: Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; (1 Timothy 4:1, KJV)

    The “bishop’s ” credentials come from a “seminary ” that worships the god of social justice (www.psr.edu).

    She is one of a great number leading souls on the broad road to destruction.

  13. Comment by Marc on August 9, 2020 at 1:01 pm

    Words from another church of “what’s happening now“.

  14. Comment by Alan Towson on August 10, 2020 at 4:56 pm

    I like her enthusiasm, but I’m an ex-Methodist.

  15. Comment by Michael McInnis on August 10, 2020 at 11:48 pm

    In response to Donald’s comment above, along with giving up her computer, she should actually stop driving a car, stop cooking on a stove (or using a microwave), and turn off her heat/air conditioning, as all of these are products of those dirty capitalist fossil fuels. And you also forgot – she should forfeit her pension and any savings she may have and let “the state” take care of her.

    Neither Glide UMC nor the UCC’s denominational leadership are relevant anymore, as they have lost any connection to the apostolic faith and gospel handed down through the ages. This is just one more reminder of how true that is.

  16. Comment by William on August 11, 2020 at 5:15 pm

    Karl Marx, the renowned atheist, would likely not label it “Jubilee Holy Work”.

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