A Tipping Point

General Conference 2019

2/26/2019

As the numbers came on the screen, a stunned silence fell across the room. For a moment, it felt like time stopped. Like me, most people assumed the One Church Plan would at least make it out of the legislative committee for a vote on the Conference floor. It did not, although it will likely come before the body today as a minority report. The chair of the proceedings, Rev. Joe Harris (who did a phenomenal job all day and should be recommended for sainthood), quickly continued with the next item on the agenda, but most of the room were still reeling, trying to make sense of what this now means. In ways many did not foresee, the United Methodist Church took a historic turn in that moment. It could be called a tipping point. We discovered we are no longer an American denomination.


GC2019 Wrapup

General Conference 2019

Robert Phillips

2/26/2019

Words -- angry, smug or divisive -- don't honor God. Prayer, conversation, and the willingness to engage others with an empathy not inconsistent with personal conviction is the need of the hour for all 'sides.' Bringing people to Jesus remains the main thing. Remember that, church. And thank you for the privilege of serving as a delegate.


Pastoral Postlude

General Conference 2019

2/26/2019

No matter how you feel after the results of General Conference, I pray that you not only take comfort in these truths but also let them challenge and convict you to be the hands and feet of Jesus in this world that is still lost, lonely, hurting and in need of a savior.


Take a deep breath and press DELETE

General Conference 2019

2/26/2019

Today has been extremely frustrating. I’ve again witnessed the reason why very little if anything happens at this level of the church. The majority will of the body can easily be ambushed by parliamentary procedure. In my opinion this has been an example of how easy it is to throw out our “hearts of peace” when “we don’t get our way.”


Tuesday morning

General Conference 2019

Robert Phillips

2/26/2019

Before Tuesday begins, this simple Monday update.


#GC2019 -- Update 4

General Conference 2019

2/25/2019

We crossed some sort of line today but I have been struggling to put my finger on what this really is.   The only comparison I have is a parent giving an instruction to their child and hearing for the first time the response, “Make me.”  It doesn’t mean the relationship is over, but neither will it be quite ever like it was before.  The genie is out of the bottle.  We are in uncharted relational territory.


An Emotional Day

General Conference 2019

2/25/2019

Emotions obviously ran high. It was clear that this global body was not going to approve the Simple Plan, but there were very few speeches against the plan. In the end, the Simple Plan was voted down by a 60%-40% margin – an indicator to many that the vast majority who favored the One Church Plan saw it as a stepping stone to the more progressive Simple Plan. Still, no celebration. The hurt of the LGBTQ+ community and its allies was obvious. Even in the speeches against the Simple Plan, the speakers indicated that no harm was intended to anyone, but nonetheless it was felt. Again, there were no winners in any of these votes.


Monday's delegate report

General Conference 2019

Robert Phillips

2/25/2019

Tomorrow will settle aspects of the challenge but firmly settle nothing. Last year I wrote an article about how the General Conference WILL fail and CAN succeed. I  am no prophet but the words are bearing fruit. I said it would fail to settle-resolve-firmly decide the issue of sexuality. The GC could not, cannot do this in four days or 40 days. The GC could have plowed the ground toward a gracious and mutually affirming spiritual mitosis (cell division) similar to the creation of the Salvation Army birthed from the Methodist Church in England, among many examples.


Striking at the Root

General Conference 2019

2/25/2019

It seems the deeper issue in our long-running debate about human sexuality is agreement on what is essential to following Christ and what is merely an opinion. Perhaps our prayer during this General Conference should be for the Holy Spirit to reveal the root more clearly. It may be the only way the house will stand.


Page 2 of 55 previous 1 2 3 4 5 ... 55 next