Pastor's Paragraph for February 24, 2019
FEBRUARY 24, 2019
Many of you know by now that I am serving this week as a delegate to the Special General Conference of The United Methodist Church, which has been called specifically “to receive and act on a report from the Commission on a Way Forward, authorized to examine paragraphs in The Book of Discipline concerning human sexuality and to explore options to strengthen church unity” (umc.org).
On the first day of the Conference, Saturday, February 23rd, all 864 delegates from around the world will spend the full day in prayer. I have felt deeply the prayers you all have been lifting up, as you have interceded for us, and I am grateful for the communion of saints that surrounds us both physically and spiritually during this ongoing time of discernment. On Sunday, while you are gathering for worship, we also will be worshipping and making decisions on how to proceed with the 78 petitions that are before us. On Monday and Tuesday, we will work on amending and voting on the petitions before us.
And so, all that is to say, that we need your continued prayers. The conversation on LGBTQ inclusion in the church has been a painful one—and there is much that I lament about the ways we have done one another harm. There is much for which we must repent—and there is much that gives us reason to hope. My prayer is that as the delegates come together, and as our church comes together, as the body of Christ, that we will step toward one another in humility, that we will see each other more clearly as beloved children of God, and that we will be open to the incomparable power of the Holy Spirit—looking to the One “who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us” (Ephesians 3:20b).
The Lord be with you, beloved, and I look forward with joy and hope to worshipping with you all together on March 3rd.
Pastor Anna Layman Knox
Lead Associate Pastor