Communications affirming open hearts, open minds, open doors.
of The United Methodist Church
Communication Commission Affirms ?Open hearts, Open minds, Open doors?
The Commission on Communication is committed to lead in the struggle to embrace what we believe is God?s call to be a people with open hearts, open minds, and open doors.
From its inception, the Methodist movement has followed the axiom, ?Preach faith until you have it.? It is an aspiration. We believe a recent Judicial Council interpretation of church law allowing a pastor to deny membership to a man because of his sexual orientation is contrary to the spirit of the teachings of the church, our history, and most importantly, the teachings of Jesus, who rejected no one. We join our bishops in their unanimous statement that United Methodist congregations are open to all.
Since this decision, some persons have asked us to withdraw our denominational promise, ?Open hearts, Open minds, Open doors: The People of The United Methodist Church.?
While we understand those concerns, we believe that it would be a tragic mistake to walk away from a promise grounded in Christ?s love and his commandment to love our neighbors as ourselves. We believe it would be a tragic mistake to walk away from the thousands of congregations who have made the promise of ?Open hearts, Open minds, Open doors: The People of The United Methodist Church? a living reality. We believe it would be a tragic mistake to turn away from congregations who affirm it makes no difference where you come from, how much money you earn, what the color of your skin is, and even, whether you are gay or straight.
This church is about the people who live out what we say as reinforced in our Constitution and Social Principles. We call on the people of The United Methodist Church to keep before the world the fundamental principle that our hearts, our minds, and our doors are open to anyone seeking a new life in Jesus Christ. Christ rejected no one. Neither can we.
Bishop Thomas J. Bickerton
United Methodist Communications
Nov. 10, 2005