Christian Pleads, Stand Firm In America: Canadian Church Already Traveling Road of Apostasy
Thanks for bringing me up to date [report below]. While I am enormously saddened, I am not surprised. We in The United Church of Canada have already been down this road. The denomination only intensifies its apostasy even as its surveillance systems spy on ministers and victimize them. The UMC will get uglier as bishops and DSs see on which side their bread is buttered. You will find many clergy who support you secretly but won't come out and say so since they are crass careerists.
At the same time, you must never relax the pressure. While the numbers in the renewal organization are not large, they are large enough to pressure the denomination. Stop sending money to the central office. Expose and name those who are perfidious. Broadcast critiques of the indefensible position papers and acts (same-gender marriages). Never relent!
Have any prominent theology professors supported you? I suspect not. Is it to be assumed, then, that they support the denomination's perfidy? Write them. When you have received a reply, go public with it.
Because of the Canadian experience, I can tell you right now that the denomination will decline very quickly. You mention 300-1000 members per day. What the bureaucrats don't understand is that the people who care enough to leave are usually the workers and GIVERS in the local congregation. To lose them is to lose a disproportionate amount of denominational support. many of those who remain are largely indifferent. Besides, the non-born again don't tithe!
As for each General Conference determining its own discipline, etc., very soon there'll be nothing recognizably Methodist.
I'm glad Jim Heidinger saw what he saw. Now he'll know what's at stake. And you won't feel isolated, for I'm sure that until now you felt that much of what you had to say others didn't believe, feeling you were exaggerating.
Must go now. thanks for keeping me informed.
a·pos·ta·sy: noun, Abandonment of a former allegiance, as to one's religious faith.
per·fi·dy: noun, Breach of loyalty or faith : treachery. perfidious: adj.
A candid conversation with the outside world
To Victor Shepherd Toronto Canada
Since I have not sent anything to you for awhile, I thought I would give you a little update about what's going on here in the Northern California.
As you are probably aware, Don Fado went ahead with their same gender union on January 16. On the 15 we held a press conference and a prayer service to state the Biblical and denomination position for celibacy and the saving grace available for those doing forbidden such acts. About 100 attended the press conference with 5 or 6 TV stations and about 4-6 written press people.
The service was attended by about 250 or so.
At our ERF retreat, that you had so generously agreed to come to but were unable and sorely missed I would state, we had about 35 people including Jim Heidinger from Good News and Ira Gallaway from the Confessing Movement. We also had some brave believers from the Oregon/Washington (3) conference and one from Cal/Pacific.
Both Jim and Ira went away with their eyes opened. They had not understood how bad things are in the Western Jurisdiction and more specifically here in Cal/Nevada. I assumed however that they would lose the clarity of what they heard about the time they got to the airport.
That was January. Here we are in March and there has been very little action, just a couple of statements against the 16/1/1999 event from both Good News and Confessing Movement. I believed then that they were awakened enough that something would happen or a stronger position would be expressed, but no such luck. (As other events have unfolded, it seems that Jim and Good News have taken a stand regarding the removal, as punitive action, of Dr. Charles Sineath from Marietta First UMC in Marietta GA but Ira and CM are painfully silent. Bishop Davis said publicly that the change was normal personnel action, but had threatened action of the church did not stop redirecting apportionment's earlier which places him in the position of not being truthful.
At the ERF retreat, we had Scott Field from Chicago come in and give us some wisdom on filing complaints in general. Since then the Don Fado participants have had complaints filed by at least one church who filed 184 or so.
Since Bishop Talbert's wife died in January (while we were at the retreat) most held off until this month to file any of these, and there are others being filed by other churches in other conferences against both in absentia participants and those who came to Sacramento..
There have been several small churches leave since we last corresponded, and I know of maybe a dozen or so who are looking at it or pastors who are looking at leaving the UMC. Most of this rides on the outcome of the Fado trials.
I would like to fill Don Fado's pulpit while the trial is on, but doubt that anyone would let an outspoken evangelical lay speaker in it. It could be a chance to open a dialogue between two disparate groups in the church and would bring understanding closer but only God can open those doors.
Anyway we progress along, waiting for the shoe of the potential trials to fall and then General Conference 2000 will be the second one. To many are hanging on these and not doing much, so the iron will grow cold and the drive will be quenched once more and the UMC will continue to lose 300-1000 people a day while it moves toward the establishment of a new Global church structure (CPT) which will enable each General Conference like North America to set its own Discipline and Articles of Religion from scratch.
The CPT by the way is so enamored with it's look inward, it has failed to look outward at a world where the lost are dying without Jesus. They completely over look the Central and South American explosion for Christ where 4,000 people a day in Argentina and 6,000 a day in Brazil are coming into a life that saves them from eternal death. What a travesty to be so self-centered and inward lead that we forget the Great Commission entirely.
Peace my brother.
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