Catch Me Up: A UMC Separation Timeline v. 1.1

by Chris Ritter Church leaders sometimes contact me for contextual information on the current state of play in the UMC. Here is a brief timeline that traces the long and winding journey we have been travelling since General Conference 2016. (For a longer history of the human sexuality debate within the UMC, see “The Fifty-Year FightContinue reading “Catch Me Up: A UMC Separation Timeline v. 1.1”

Circuit Riders: Spreading Scriptural Holiness the Old fashioned Way — Hermit Preacher

(I am clergy member of the GMC. I do not serve in any other official capacity. I am not in regular communication with the Transitional Leadership Council or its staff, have never met them (though some of us may have shared a passing word at a convention), and doubt that any have cause to know […]Continue reading “Circuit Riders: Spreading Scriptural Holiness the Old fashioned Way — Hermit Preacher”

#BeUMC: Wrong Answers Only Edition — People Need Jesus

by Chris Ritter There are many reasons to not disaffiliate from the United Methodist Church. Its revised narrative is the best fit for many U.S. congregations and the default option for all. For all legitimate reasons to #BeUMC, some really lousy ones keep getting repeated. Consider… “#BeUMC… to stay Methodist” United Methodism is not synonymous with Methodism. […]Continue reading “#BeUMC: Wrong Answers Only Edition — People Need Jesus”

Thoughts on that Statement by African Bishops

by Chris Ritter I shared yesterday via Twitter some thoughts on the September 8 statement by African bishops. These bishops reaffirmed biblical teaching but renounced the influence of both the Africa Initiative and WCA. We need some context to begin to understand what is happening. The tweet thread format is difficult for some readers, soContinue reading “Thoughts on that Statement by African Bishops”

Thoughts on that Statement by African Bishops

by Chris Ritter I shared yesterday via Twitter some thoughts on the September 8 statement by African bishops. These bishops reaffirmed biblical teaching but renounced the influence of both the Africa Initiative and WCA. We need some context to begin to understand what is happening. The tweet thread format is difficult for some readers, soContinue reading “Thoughts on that Statement by African Bishops”

For Those Remaining in the South Carolina Captivity

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com I am not a United Methodist. I had my own exit strategy that did not require conference approval. Yet, I have compassion for those South Carolina United Methodists who feel trapped by an unfaithful power structure. What I offer is a personal perspective. It is advice based on how IContinue reading “For Those Remaining in the South Carolina Captivity”

Disaffiliation and the Coming Drop-Deadline

by Chris Ritter Even without a General Conference, 2022 is shaping up to be the most eventful year in a generation for American Methodists: (1) The General Conference that was to have approved a historic Separation Protocol was delayed until 2024, amid a cloud of political intrigue. (2) The Global Methodist Church launched on MayContinue reading “Disaffiliation and the Coming Drop-Deadline”

Global Game-Changers: Ending Guaranteed Appointments

by Chris Ritter As the new Global Methodist denomination takes form, it comes as no surprise there are tensions to be managed. How much to keep and how much to change? On one side is the risk of reproducing a slightly more conservative version of the institution that enabled fifty years of unbroken Methodist decline.Continue reading “Global Game-Changers: Ending Guaranteed Appointments”

Methodist Separation in Mainline Context

by Chris Ritter In the early 20th Century, seven Mainline denominations formed the backbone of an overwhelmingly Protestant American nation. By 1975, the percentage of Americans attending a Mainline Church was down to 31%. Today, something like 10% identify with any of these “seven sisters.” Evangelical churches, surpassing the Mainline mainline market share in theContinue reading “Methodist Separation in Mainline Context”