Serving God…Sharing Love…Changing Lives!
STATEMENT OF FAITH FOLLOWING THE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH GENERAL CONFERENCE OF 2019
As an aspirational statement, the Monroeville United Methodist Church affirms that the following statement of faith serves as the lens through which we examine decisions that have been and will be made by the United Methodist Church and will guide us as we chart a future for theMonroeville United Methodist Church.
We honor diversity as a God-given gift and we understand that diversity brings with it dissenting voices. In humility, we love and honor those who dissent remembering that God uses dissonance to transform our hearts. Likewise, we claim a dissenting voice when we feel the Spirit of God calling us to do so; that God may use us as agents of Christ’s transforming love.
Our faith is both informed and formed by:
- the witness of Jesus found in his (the Hebrew) Scripture and in ours (the New Testament) - “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself” (Deuteronomy 6:5, Leviticus 19:18; Luke 10:27) and “Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another” (John 13:3);
- authentically Christ-centered Church tradition;
- our personal experience of life in the world and in the Spirit; and
- God’s gift of the ability to reason and to determine what makes sense.
We believe in the ever-expanding diversity of God’s Creation - from that initial “Let there be light” (Genesis 1:1-3) through to the present and on into the future - that makes up the world’s bright tapestry of cultures, races, nations, languages, theologies, generations, differing physical and mental abilities, sexual orientations, and gender identities.
We believe that all persons seeking Christian community should find in the church a place to which they are invited and in which they are welcomed, accepted, affirmed, confirmed, and empowered for service in the church and the world.
We believe that God calls Christians identifying as (and those supportive of) LGBTQIA+ persons to all dimensions of ministry - including ordained ministry.
We believe that congregations should be free to witness the marriage vows of all consenting adult couples and that pastors should be free to officiate at services where persons, regardless of their sexual identity, commit their lives to one another and “bear witness to the love of God in this world so that those to whom love is a stranger will find in [them] generous friends” (from “A Service of Christian Marriage” found in The United Methodist Hymnal and The United Methodist Book of Worship).
We believe that language makes a difference and that masculine language, when used exclusively with respect to God or in reference to humanity, limits our understanding of God and humanity and needs to be expanded by a church committed to true inclusion.
April 29, 2019