Dear sisters and brothers of the Iowa United Methodist community,
The Appointive Cabinet of the Iowa Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church has issued a statement in response to the Special Called General Conference of the denomination.
In it they share their concerns and share their “commitment to lead the Iowa Annual Conference, even as “we recognize our own diversity when it comes to theological and biblical interpretation.” They express the hope that, “as we all navigate these coming days, we hold each and all of you in prayer, asking that you do the same for us.”
In the powerful name and unifying spirit of Jesus Christ, the Appointive Cabinet greets the people of the Iowa United Methodist churches and ministry partners:
We confess and grieve that great harm has been done and continues to be done to the LGBTQIA community, families, friends, and our communities of faith. Even as we continue in our own struggles around human sexuality, we aspire to operate in a manner committed to Christ’s call to love God with our whole heart, soul, mind and strength and to love our neighbor as God loves us. Here in Iowa, our reality is that most of our churches are diverse in many aspects, as are our families, workplaces, schools and communities. By God’s grace, we live together, love one another, and grow as disciples of Jesus Christ across these differences.
In regard to our most recent General Conference, we all await along with you for a clearer picture of the future direction of The United Methodist Church. As soon as it is available, we will share information from the upcoming Judicial Council as they rule on the constitutionality of decisions made at the Special Called General Conference, held in St. Louis this past February. We will also share ongoing updates as they are made available. Even as we wait, we will continue to lead the mission and ministry of Iowa United Methodists to be “God’s hope for the world, made real through faithful leaders, fruitful communities, and fire-filled people.”
As your Appointive Cabinet, we are committed to observing the governance of the Book of Discipline. Within the spirit of connection and our Wesleyan heritage, and responding to how we understand God’s radical love for the most marginalized of people, we are also committed to eradicating any further harm to the LGTBQIA community and individuals.
As the Appointive Cabinet, we reflect the diversity of the clergy and laity of the Iowa Annual Conference. Together, we speak with one heart and voice in our commitment to lead the Iowa Annual Conference, even as we recognize our own diversity when it comes to theological and biblical interpretation. As we all navigate these coming days, we hold each other and all of you in prayer, asking that you do the same for us.