To the pure all things are pure, but to those who are defiled and unbelieving nothing is pure; but even their mind and conscience are defiled. They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work. --- Titus 1:15,16
The scramble has been on for quite a while, but intensified in the wake of a Virginia Conference pastor's refusal to receive a man into church membership who was openly practicing sodomy. The man was unwilling to cease his immoral behavior pattern.
The pastor was suspended by a vote of the Executive Session of the Virginia Conference over which Bishop Charlene Kammerer presides. The UMC Judicial Council ruled that he was to be reinstated and reimbursed all lost salary.
The Council of Bishops of the UMC, looking out for one of their own, responded with a "pastoral letter" which basically declared that the man should have been received into the membership of the church as he had requested.
UMC bishops are increasingly capitulating to the demands of the sodomite/lesbian cartel. The rallying cry now is "homosexuality is not a barrier" when it comes to church membership!
A petition to the General Conference of 2008 which seeks to amend the UMC Book of Discipline is making its rounds in the annual conferences, including the W. PA Annual Conference now in session in Grove City PA.
The petition seeks to add this phrase to the BOD -- "No person shall or will be excluded from membership in The United Methodist Church for reasons related to sexual orientation." Each conference to which this is being submitted will act on it, either adopting or rejecting it.
Incidentally, there are those in the W. PA Conference who hold to the position that homosexuality is not a sin. This includes a very high profile leader involved in the well orchestrated "Believe Again!" campaign now underway in the conference. He so stated that position publicly at a seminar a while back.
What if the proposed petition is finally adopted at General Conference in spring of 2008? It will mean a lot of adjusting will have to be done. "How so?" you may ask.
Consider some possibilities (or maybe more appropriately "some fall out!") in this thing of "sexual orientation":
- a couple is "oriented" to a swinging sexual lifestyle -- the husband and wife enjoy sexual escapades with other couples on a regular basis -- they want to join a United Methodist Church, but also state that they fully intend to continue their present lifestyle after joining up! Who is to say that their way of life is a sin if the person practicing sodomy is considered a non-sinner according to a number of United Methodists including members of the episcopacy?
- a woman who is "oriented" to practicing adultery. In this case, her husband is aware of her sexual involvements with other men, but he is a compassionate and understanding person and does his best to support her. She wants to join the UMC but also insists that she will continue her sexual adventures with other men. Her justification for this? She was born that way and is "oriented" to intimate affairs with numerous men -- the more the merrier is the way she sees it. How can we object to her becoming a member when she is so "oriented?"
- a man enjoys sexual experiences with animals. His preferrd "partner" is a young Holstein heifer. He is not hesitant in revealing how he is sexually attracted to young heifers because in his understanding, he is "oriented" that way, even from birth. He is quick to respond to his critics with the ultimate put down -- "Don't knock it until you try it!" He is also among those with varied sexual "orentations" who want to become members of the UMC. On what ground could any bishop, district superintendent, or pastor refuse him? If the man practicing sodomy is not considered a sinner by such behavior, who are we to condemn a guy who is sexually intimate with his heifer?"
- a young female teacher enjoys having sexual moments with her male students -- she prefers the 15 year olds and gets great delight out of "initiating" the youngsters into world of sexual adventures. Seems as though this is a thing happening more and more in schools across the country. But she and others such as she are "oriented" that way and we ought not to stand in the way if they want to join and become members of the UMC! Don't forget, it's all about "orientation" when it comes to sexual experience and expression -- just don't mention the word "sin" or the word "repent" when considering the subject!
The list could be greatly expanded, but you get the picture, do you not? For an exercise in how far this can go, try adding to the list and picture how the UMC of the future will appear if General Conference 2008 adopts a change in the Book of Discipline which reads, "No person shall or will be excluded from membership in The United Methodist Church for reasons related to sexual orientation."
Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! --- Isaiah 5:20