Understanding "A Way Forward"

"A Way Forward" meetings at DUMC led by our pastors

  • Additional meeting scheduled: Wednesday, Feb. 13 from 7 to 8:30 pm 
  • Members of Damascus UMC met Sunday, February 3, to learn about what is happening and ask questions.

Understanding “A Way Forward”

The Council of Bishops has called a Special Session of the General Conference of the UMC to be held February 23-26, 2019, in St. Louis, Missouri. The General Conference is the top policy-making body of our denomination, comprised of equal numbers of laity and clergy from United Methodist Conferences around the world.  Twelve people, six clergy and six laity, from the Baltimore-Washington Conference (BWC) of which Damascus UMC will be in attendance. 

The purpose of the special session is to receive and act on a report from the Commission on A Way Forward based on the recommendations of the Council of Bishops. The 32-member Commission was authorized by the 2016 General Conference and appointed by the Council of Bishops to examine paragraphs in The Book of Discipline concerning human sexuality and exploring options to strengthen the unity of the church.  At the last meeting of the Baltimore Washington Conference of the United Methodist Church, we adopted a covenant through which we committed, as laity and clergy, to have discussions with our congregations regarding the issues of the special session of General Conference and report on those discussions at our next Church Conference in Fall 2019.  

While you are encouraged to read the entire report and review the many resources available, if you do nothing else, please read these three documents.

Bishop Easterling's Letter: "We can remain together—Why I support the One Church Plan": http://www.bwcumc.org/news-and-views/a-word-from-the-bishop-we-can-remain-together-why-i-support-the-one-church-plan/

Plans - At - A - Glance which provides a summary and side-by-side comparison of the One Church Plan and the other two which were not selected by a strong majority of the Council of Bishops:  http://78455c2ccb400d517780-dac10a94c714bbb9d8050040bb216432.r90.cf2.rackcdn.com/uploaded/t/0e7959053_1539886991_threeplanssummarysheet.pdf

Finding Our Way Forward resolution passed at our 2018 Annual Conference Session:  http://www.bwcumc.org/resource-library/finding-our-way-forward-covenant/

The above listed documents and much more information (including videos) can be found on the website of the Baltimore-Washington Conference; go to www.bwcumc.org and click on the Resources tab on the far right or go directly to: http://www.bwcumc.org/resources/commission-on-a-way-forward/.   Should you wish to read the full 98-page report of the Commission on A Way Forward, go to: http://s3.amazonaws.com/Website_Properties/council-of-bishops/news_and_statements/documents/Way_Forward_Report_-_Final_-_ENGLISH.pdf

 You are invited to fast and pray for the General Conference, the UMC, and its members.  


 Grace and peace,

Pastor Kathryn and Pastor Benjamin