In the Dakotas Conference of the United Methodist Church, I feel blessed that our bishops and district superintendents wants their pastors and churches to land in the denomination that fits them best. A few years ago, Bishop Ough setup the Strategy team to specifically address this. Bishops Haller and Keisey have continued that effort. I love their heart for our churches and pastors. They have given us a tremendous gift in allowing churches and pastors the freedom to explore the options.
For the majority of churches, the freedom to explore makes for a very difficult decision. This will be the first time our churches will face the decision of whether or no to remain United Methodist. Prior to 2019, the Trust Clause prevented a church from leaving except for through closing. Pastor, on the other hand, have had a lot more freedom to move from denomination to denomination.
In the video, I give three questions that I hope are helpful to you. They’ve helped me from time to time in discerning where I belong. I’ll give them in brief here:
- Who is the main thing and why? This goes back to the purpose that God has called you to. Who is the person that you most want to benefit, and how do you want to benefit them?
- What questions should I ask the other side? When visiting with those promoting the United Methodists or the Global Methodists, I really don’t want to hear them try to answer for the other side. Likely that will be unproductive. This is a way to redirect and get to what they are concerned about.
- Am I being called to or released from? What do you believe is the LORD’s will in all this. Sometimes God’s plans don’t fit with our preferences.
- Four Principles to guide UMC Split: http://jctaccounting.com/2022/04/15/four-principles-to-guide-the-umc-through-the-split/
- Dakotas UMC’s Values Workshop: https://www.dakotasumc.org/about/strategy-team/values-workshop
- Dakotas UMC Strategy Team Resources: https://www.dakotasumc.org/about/strategy-team/resources
- Table from the WCA showing difference between GMC & UMC: https://wesleyancovenant.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/A-Comprehensive-Comparison-Chart.pdf
- United Methodist Website: https://www.umc.org/
- Global Methodist Website: https://globalmethodist.org/