Faithful UMs Offer Sigh Of Relief, "Holy Homosexuality" Narrowly Defeated, Pro-homosexuality Groups Stage Pre-planned "Die-In"
On Wednesday, April 30, 2008, in the afternoon.
The debate over petition #80449 dealing with paragraph 161.G, page 324 of the ADCA and page 2266 DCA was the first dealing with the important issue of human sexuality.
Pastor Kalanga from the Tanganyika Conference noted that the Methodists of the world will be considering “what we do here” in Ft. Worth. He noted that “It is important to take into consideration because the world is watching us.” He read the last sentence from the petition about the “leading of the Spirit.” He and other delegates then pointed out that the foreign delegates often faced pressures from non-Christian forces such as Islam. A wrong decision in this area that would allow for ordination of homosexuals as pastors or remove the clause that this is “incompatible with Christian teaching.”
Key legislation centered around this petition and dealt with paragraph 161G on homosexuality being incompatible with Christianity. Dr. Eddie Fox headed up the group that submitted a minority report, contained on DCA page 2267. The minority report (holding the line on the statement) was approved with a vote of 517 for and 416 against, or 55% for and 45% against. That means that the minority report became the majority report. The next vote was to approve the now majority report. It was done with a vote of 501 yes to 417 against or 55% yes to 45% against. During the vote and afterward, those who were supportive of the homosexual agenda stood and then remained standing. On the floor of the General Conference who stood over this issue were fewer in number than in Pittsburgh in 2004.
Credit goes to Dr. Eddie Fox and those who signed to make this a minority report + all those GC delegates to include those from Africa and the Philippines who worked for and voted for the passing of this petition.
After the vote and while Gerry Reist was reading a series of Judicial Council decisions, those standing started singing “Jesus Loves Me” and did so through the entire reading of the Judicial Council decision.
9:39 p.m.: The next significant petition was #80019, ADCA page 923, DCA page 2268, calendar #1206. Has to do with removing the language that homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching, and that homosexuals are not to be ordained as candidates. The majority report was to reject the petition and thereby retain the present statement that homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching and that homosexuals are not to be ordained as ministers. The minority report would have removed those prohibitions. Minority report was defeated 599, 67% to 298, 33%. The majority report was supported in that the petition was rejected 579 to 335, thereby retaining the language of the Book of Discipline.
The next significant petition was #80088, ADCA page 1329, DCA page 2131, calendar #1207. Has to do with local church membership. The petition as reported out by committee would have taken away the authority of the pastor to determine who comes into the church. The minority report was very eloquently delineated by Alice M. Wolfe. However, she did not mention the homosexual aspect. It was defeated. The majority report which would have mandated taking into membership everyone came into play, but was defeated. By 49% for to 51% against.
After the day’s activities many if not all of the evangelicals were relieved and grateful.
Allen Morris, Concerned Methodists
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