By Bishop Tracy S. Malone
May 8, 2018
I am disappointed and dismayed that neither Constitutional Amendment I: Gender Equality nor Constitutional Amendment II: Equal Membership in the Local Church received the necessary 2/3 majority vote.
Call to Action: I challenge us to be unequivocally committed to the equality of women and their full inclusion in the total life of our church. We have much work to do!
Our work for justice and inclusion is never finished!! And it’s all of our work to do … individually, in our homes, in our workplaces, and especially in the CHURCH!
I invite you to read this press release and to click on the links therein to see the following:
Constitutional Amendment I: Gender Equality would have added a new paragraph to ¶6 declaring that, “men and women are of equal value in the eyes of God.” It would have gone on to say that maleness and femaleness are characteristics of human bodies, not the divine. It would have also asserted that The United Methodist Church will “seek to eliminate discrimination against women and girls, whether in organizations or in individuals, in every facet of its life and in society at large.”
In the East Ohio Conference, there were 442 votes for and 391 against the proposed Constitutional Amendment I, 53%.
Constitutional Amendment II: Equal Membership in the Local Church would have added gender, ability, age and marital status to the list of characteristics that do not bar people from membership in the church. Specifically, the amended ¶4 would have said that no member shall be “denied access to an equal place in the life, worship and governance of the Church because of race, color, gender, national origin, ability, age, marital status or economic condition.”
In the East Ohio Conference, there were 445 votes for and 391 against the proposed Constitutional Amendment II, 53%.
Let us continue to pray for our beloved, The United Methodist Church! These amendments may not have passed constitutionally but let our commitment and work be the law of our hearts and ministry.
Executive Secretary to the Bishop’s Office
Board of Ministry
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