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Confessing Movement Releases Statement of  Concern Over CA Charges


THE CONFESSING MOVEMENT WITHIN THE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH NEWS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: PATRICIA MILLER – EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
317-356-9729

DR. IRA GALLAWAY – ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR
505-797-2996

TUESDAY, APRIL 20, 1999

The officers of the Confessing Movement within the United Methodist Church believe the verdict in the Dell trial upholds the clear teaching of scripture, the apostolic tradition, and the Discipline of the United Methodist Church. Reverend Gregory Dell chose to blatantly violate the classical, biblical faith and apostolic tradition.

The Confessing Movement affirms the verdict and punishment in the trial. The Confessing Movement, which is supported by 566,000 United Methodists, believes the vast majority of our denomination support the decision of the court.

The Confessing Movement also has grave concern about the situation in the California-Nevada Conference where the Reverend Don Fado and sixty-eight other pastors joined together in performing a same-sex union on January 16, 1999. This ceremony has been designated by Rev. Fado and others as an act of ecclesiastical disobedience.

Charges have been brought against each of these pastors, but at this time there is no clear indication how the Bishop and the Conference plan to, or can, effectively and fairly implement the required disciplinary process. Since Bishop Melvin Talbert has openly and publicly stated that he is personally supportive of the action of Rev. Fado, though he is legally bound by the law of the Church, the question should be raised as to the difficulty he faces in giving impartial direction to the disciplinary process.

We respectfully request that the Council of Bishops fulfill their pledge made at Lincoln, Nebraska, to hold each other accountable in dealing with this issue.

We note another matter of grave concern in the California-Nevada Conference where the Reverend Mike Goodyear, one of the pastors who filed charges against Rev. Fado and others, now faces charges by his District Superintendent for failure to adhere to the "responsibilities and duties of a pastor." Within the last year four effective young evangelical pastors have turned in their orders because they did not feel that their ministry could be effective and viable under the present leadership of the Conference. We hope and pray that Bishop Talbert’s intention is not to purge his conference of evangelical pastors.

Bill Bouknight
President, Board of Directors

Mary Daffin
Vice President, Board of Directors

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