Omaha First UMC Church Council Chair Resigns
Statement from Frank Rathbun, former chairman of the Church Council at the First United Methodist Church in Omaha, Nebraska
Dear Pastor Creech:
I was elected to the position of chairman, Church Council at the All-Church Conference on December 2, 1997. My name had been placed in nomination from the floor and the Congregation elected me to succeed the then existing Chairman who still had two years to run on her term.
Since taking office, I have attended many meetings of the twenty-three, Committees, Boards and Commissions that exist in our organization. I also presided at Council Meetings on January 20, and February 23, 1998. I have learned a great deal about the current status of our Church. I have observed that:
In spite of this and other information in my possession regarding the current status and climate in FUMC, I was not called upon to testify at your trial last week in Kearney, NE. I believe that I could have offered testimony that would have offset the uncontested testimony of several of our Church members who testified on your behalf indicating that things were in good shape at our Church.
Last Saturday morning, shortly after the verdict was announced, I commenced receiving telephone calls from people who had pledged to support me in my role as church Council Chair asking that they be released from their commitment to me.
In view of (1) the erosion of support for me from a number of my friends, (2) my belief that some of your practices are, in my opinion, an abomination to God, and (3) my reluctance to play the role of an obstructionist at my Church bring me to the point that I feel I can no longer be effective as Chair, Church Council. Accordingly, I am resigning effective with your receipt of this letter.
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