Love Is Love Is Love
Bible Text: John 15:12-17 The Message (MSG) | Speaker: Rev. Dr. Carolyn Scanlan-Holmes, Rev. Dr. Linda McCoy | Series: Bring A Buddy to The Garden | This weekend the United Methodist Church General Conference is meeting in St. Louis. The primary agenda item will be a vote on ”The Way Forward” report and determine the official stance of the church on issues of human sexuality. Serving in ministry for more than twenty years human sexuality is a topic that has historically been a source of pain, conflict, and division in the in the United Methodist Church. After being raised a United Methodist and serving a United Methodist church in seminary, I was in great conflict when it came time to be ordained as I was opposed to the United Methodist Churches discriminatory stance as it related to our LGBTQ brothers and sisters. It was this specific reason I choose to be ordained in another denomination. It was, for this reason, I was truly surprised to be called back to the United Methodist Church. I was happily serving in The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) when the Bishop called me to serve The Garden. It was one of those times in life when I experienced God’s call, I never dreamed of returning to the United Methodist Church. It was only after I found documentation that the Garden clearly welcomed all people that I considered and eventually accepted the call to serve as your Pastor.
No matter what the vote holds this weekend the Garden is very clear that we are a community where all people are welcomed. I would encourage anyone who has in the past felt discriminated against and welcomed at The Garden to attend service on Sunday (in person or online). We will celebrate God’s work in the past and recommit The Garden to the only way forward, a place where all people are welcome.