Welcome to the Conversation
Frame (An Introduction)
by Bishop Rueben P. Job and Neil M. Alexander
We have choices to make. We make important choices in how we honor God, follow Jesus, live together, work for justice, love mercy, and treat each other. We make choices when we search for, live out, and bear witness to the truth. Of late we see an increasing preference for polarizing declarations about what is and is not consistent with Christian teaching. We hear competing appeals to strictly follow or completely abandon some dictates of the United Methodist Book of Discipline. In these and other ways people are drawing lines in the sand and demanding that folks choose a side on which they will stand. READ MORE
Finding Our Way Contents
Enforce: Gregory V. Palmer
Emend: Hope Morgan Ward
Disobey: Melvin G. Talbert
Disarm: Kenneth H. Carter, Jr.
Order: J. Michael Lowry
Unity: John K. Yambasu
Diversity: Rosemarie Wenner
Trust God: Rueben P. Job
Finding Our Way: Love and Law in the United Methodist Church is authored by eight United Methodist bishops. These writers enunciate and clarify pathways that represent faithful, responsible, and constructive ways forward. Each bishop articulates a view to move us through current conflict about homosexual practice, same-gender unions, qualifications for ordination, and church governance. A number of bishops from regions across the world-wide United Methodist connection were invited to contribute to Finding Our Way. Timing and other priorities made it difficult for some to participate. For that reason, and because we are fully committed to the value of continuing this holy conversation, we will be receiving and posting additional input and responses by more bishops on this page as they choose to participate.
Is the Answer in Our Polity?
by Bishop Mike Coyner
What follows is a series of questions that might not satisfy very many, but might lead us toward some different conversations about the future of our United Methodist Church. I know that our church is divided and struggling with many issues, including the issue of homosexuality, and it seems that our current efforts to resolve these issues through General Conference legislation, acts of protest, or clergy trials have not helped. And so I wonder... READ MORE
by Bishop Roy I. Sano
A growing number of United Methodist clergy are conducting same gender unions in violation of the Church’s law. (¶2702.1b) They are doing so out of love for those they are uniting. They also see the Church’s prohibitions contradicting Wesleyan hospitality in our Discipline. “Inclusiveness means openness, acceptance, and support that enable all persons to participate in the life of the Church, the community, and the world; therefore, inclusiveness denies every semblance of discrimination. The services of worship of every local church of The United Methodist Church shall be open to all persons.” READ MORE
A Way Forward
by Bishop Grant Hagiya
Our United Methodist Church is in for some tough sledding now and in the future, but I believe that there is a way forward for our church. It must begin with our return to prayer, study, and deep discernment. Only in this deep place of spiritual depth will we find a way forward. We cannot resort to beating each other up because we are on opposite sides of this issue. We need to model the unconditional love of God in Jesus Christ in our relationships. READ MORE
In Defense of a Middle Way: Homosexuality and The United Methodist Church
by M. Kathryn Armistead
It is difficult to be a United Methodist and not know that the issue of homosexuality is controversial for our church. I’m even aware that there is continued and sustained talk about a denominational split, as some of our sister denominations have done already. READ MORE
Join the Discussion
You can share your thoughts about Finding Our Way in the comments section at the bottom of this page, and in the comments section on each article page. You can also join the discussion on Twitter, using the hashtag #umc.