Response to the 2019 General Conference
We would rather be excluded for who we include than included for who we exclude.
Based on a quote by Rev. Eston Williams, Aley UMC
The Edmonds United Methodist Church has been a Reconciling Church since 2015 and greatly values its many LGBTQ members and their families. As such, we are offended by the deeply insensitive decisions of 2019 Special General Conference. These actions lead us to question the wisdom, compassion and faithfulness of the decision-makers of our denomination. In response to the decision of the 2019 Special General Conference be it known that:
We are unwilling to remain in a structure that rejects any person or people or condemns and punishes us for ministry to them; therefore,
We reject the decision of the 2019 General Conference to adopt the Traditional Plan as the way forward for the United Methodist Church;
We affirm the leadership of the PNW Annual Conference and Western Jurisdiction in opposing the decision and urge our conference and jurisdictional leadership to work to overturn the General Conference 2019 decisions and adopt more inclusive revisions to the Book of Discipline or form a separate, fully-inclusive denominational structure.
After General Conference 2020 we will again be at a decision point:
If the decision of General Conference 2019 to accept the Traditional Plan is permanently overturned either by the Judicial Council or by General Conference 2020, and some form of the One Church Plan or Simple Plan is adopted instead, we will proudly continue our United Methodist tradition;
If General Conference 2020 upholds the decisions of General Conference 2019 and the Western Jurisdiction or an alternate body in opposition to the Traditional Plan forms a new denominational structure aligned with our understanding of scriptural and Wesleyan Methodist principles we pledge our participation in the new denomination to the fullest extent possible;
If General Conference 2020 upholds the decisions of General Conference 2019 and the Western Jurisdiction and PNW Annual Conference choose a path of "change from within," a continuation of our United Methodist affiliation would most likely be difficult to maintain. At this juncture we would begin a process of deep discernment to address our ongoing association with the United Methodist Church with the possible outcome being the exercise of the relevant disassociation option and pursuit of either another denominational affiliation or independence.
In the meantime, we will pray for the transformation of our United Methodist Church into a place of "Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors," where all God's people are truly welcome.
Adopted by Church Council Date: April 3, 2019
Phil Borgnes, Co-Chair
Erin Arguelles, Co-Chair
Edmonds United Methodist Church