United Methodist Social Principles - The Nurturing Community

Samantha 2012/05/23 21:23:48
This is an area of controversy among United Methodists particularly on the issue of marriage equality. The Social Principles state "We support laws in civil society that define marriage as the union of one man and one woman." However, there are many congregations that disagree with that very conservative statement. My church, for example, is a Reconciling Congregation meaning we welcome Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered people. The welcoming statement of our church states "As congregants of the First United Methodist Church of [for privacy reasons, I omitted this part], we welcome and affirm all persons. We are intentional in being inclusive of those of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender orientations, all genders, ethnicities, nationalities, and abilities. In modeling the ministry of Jesus Christ, we shall all journey together into full participation in the life of the United Methodist Church and a closer relationship with God."

The community provides the potential for nurturing human beings into the fullness of their humanity. We believe we have a responsibility to innovate, sponsor, and evaluate new forms of community that will encourage development of the fullest potential in individuals. Primary for us is the gospel understanding that all persons are important—because they are human beings created by God and loved through and by Jesus Christ and not because they have merited significance. We therefore support social climates in which human communities are maintained and strengthened for the sake of all persons and their growth. We also encourage all individuals to be sensitive to others by using appropriate language when referring to all persons. Language of a derogatory nature (with regard to race, nationality, ethnic background, gender, sexuality, and physical differences) does not reflect value for one another and contradicts the gospel of Jesus Christ.

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