Judicial Council Meets; A Pastoral Response

Bishop Karen Oliveto, Mountain Sky AreaThe Judicial Council of the UMC met in Newark, New Jersey, April 25-28, 2017, and has issued its rulings. Here are links about the meeting:

UMNS Story about the hearing held Tuesday, April 25. Key Briefs are linked.

Affirmation was present! A statement about the hearing and subsequent ruling will be in the upcoming newsletter, due out soon.

UMNS Story about the ruling on the Western Jurisdiction consecration of Bishop Karen Oliveto: Consecration of gay bishop against church law

The ruling, Decision 1341.

Note that Bishop Oliveto was lawfully consecrated because she met the qualifications ("in good standing") and remains an active bishop in her assignment to the Mountain Sky Area. But the Council said that the WJ College of Bishops needs to review her status because of her public-record same-sex marriage to her spouse Robin Ridenour, a UM deaconness. Note also that the Council expanded the meaning of "self-avowed practicing homosexual" to mean someone in a public, civil marriage between partners of the same gender.

Other rulings: Decision 1343 and 1344; UMNS story: Review all clergy qualifications, court says

Both of these rulings mandate that Boards of Ordained Ministry ask about sexual practices (OK, they didn't say it like that, but that's what they meant!). Read them carefully if you're a candidate or a BoOM member.

If after reading all of this you're discouraged, read or watch this pastoral letter from Western Jurisdiction Bishops:

Western Jurisdiction Bishops Issue Pastoral Letter
Western Jurisdiction Bishops Issue Pastoral Letter


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