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The Confessing Movement Responds to Lesbian Marriage in Omaha UMC

Response to the Omaha Same-Sex Covenant Service

In response to the many calls and inquiries to the Confessing Movement office regarding the recent "same-sex covenant service" which took place at a United Methodist Church in Omaha, the Board of Directors has released the following statement:

Based on the information we currently have we believe that Reverend James Creech of First United Methodist Church of Omaha has violated Paragraphs 65C of the 1996 Book of Discipline. We trust that Bishop Joel Martinez and the Nebraska Conference will take the appropriate disciplinary actions in this case. We want to encourage the Bishop in the fulfillment of the duties of his Episcopal office, and we encourage all United Methodists to pray for him and even to write him a supportive note. You may write to Bishop Joel Martinez at 2541 North 49th Street, Lincoln, Nebraska 68504-4553.

We have heard many angry voices raised and many threats to leave the church because of Rev. Creech's action. We would counsel instead that United Methodists take their membership vows even more seriously at a time like this. Rev. Creech's performance of this same-sex covenant service is what is called a "schismatic" action in the Church's doctrinal tradition. He has chosen to act outside the consensus, discipline, and doctrine of the Church. We should not respond with anger. Rather, we should struggle all the more faithfully to uphold the Church's discipline and standards. Although Rev. Creech may claim to have acted in obedience to his conscience, he has clearly decided to break covenant with our church and its General Conference for the sake of a different covenant.

To those who wonder where the Confessing Movement stands on this event, we refer them to Article III of our Confessional Statement:

"We repudiate teachings and practices that misuse principles of inclusiveness and tolerance to distort the doctrine and discipline of the Church. We deny that the individual is free to decide what is true and what is false, what is good and what is evilů. Any new teachings in the Church that seek to set aside the biblical witness cannot be established by votes, or appeals to personal experience, or by responding to contemporary social pressures. According to the Apostolic faith, such teachings and practices are false and unfaithful to the Gospel."

- The Confessing Movement within the United Methodist Church

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