The UMCNext Proposal
We envision a United Methodist Church that welcomes everyone, nurtures devoted disciples of Jesus Christ, and equips our members to live as salt and light in the world. Reclaiming the spiritual zeal and creativity of our Wesleyan heritage, we imagine a United Methodist Church moving forward with renewed vision, missional alignment, and self-determination.
We understand that different segments of The United Methodist Church hold divergent views about how the resources of our faith guide us to live the Christian life. While most have learned to live with these differences in our congregations and annual conferences, there are some who seek the opportunity to form new expressions of Methodism. The UMCNext Proposal is offered as a comprehensive way forward for the United Methodist Church.
The UMCNext Proposal…
- Keeps intact the United Methodist Church as a denomination while allowing for greater regional autonomy across the entire connection.
- Retains the current doctrinal standards of The Book of Discipline, including our commitment to the historic essentials of the Christian faith.
- Removes language and policies from The Book of Discipline that are harmful to and exclusive of LGBTQ persons.
- Retains the ability of pastors to determine if a couple is ready for marriage and of annual conferences to determine if a candidate meets the criteria for ordination.
- Provides a method for groups of churches to form new expressions of Methodism.
- Creates a Commission on the 21st Century Church to prepare a comprehensive structure and governance plan that addresses historic inequities and injustice and includes clarification related to the adaptability of The Book of Discipline.
In this season of reformation, the proposal calls for a Special Session of the General Conference in 2022 to sustain momentum, receive the work of the Commission on the 21st Century Church, and take the next faithful step toward a gracious, just and Spirit-fueled new life for The United Methodist Church.