PEMA Kenya’s ENGAGEMENT WITH THE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH

 

PEMA KENYA TO ENGAGE WITH THE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH

PEMA KENYA TRUST in partnership  with St Paul’s University and with the support from  FRI and Palladium will be carrying out training for the  top leadership of the United Methodist Church in Kenya. This is a Global church founded in the United States of America that is on the verge of making a decision that would drastically influence the religious scene in the world and particularly in Kenya.

The United Methodist Church International is set up to discuss three proposals in a special sitting next year in ST. Louis Missouri on February 2019. The three proposals are set out in a report that sums up the finding of a commission that was set to address emergent volatile social issues in the global church. In other words, the report seeks to address the deficiency of the Book of Discipline in addressing emerging Gender and Sexual Diversity Issues.

The Way Forward Commission, which came up with the findings of the report, has proposed the following stances for debate and decision;

  • Firstly, to change the church’s official teaching on marriage and sexuality to affirm monogamous same-sex relationships. This will be a progressive approach to also allow the ordained ministers to conduct same sex marriages and ordain queer persons.
  • Secondly, to limit and delegate the amendments to the churches official teachings to the respective regions: As such the regions can respond according to needs of its faithful. This position is however limited in the sense that the ordained ministers are left to act according to their conscience. As such, an ordained minister can choose to respectfully refuse to ordain or marry same sex partners.
  • Finally, the last proposal is a conservative and traditional position. This means that the United Methodist Church will preserve the current stance of the official teachings prohibiting same-sex marriage and the ordination of practicing homosexuals.

In light of this development, PEMA Kenya, in conjunction with its partners, has developed a 5 day training curriculum to address the needs of the UMC religious leaders in Kenya. Some of these leaders are voting delegates and had engaged PEMA KENYA TRUST to empower them to understand the issues surrounding the special session in St Louis Missouri next year. The curriculum sets to deliver the following objectives:-

  • Define and understand Gender and Sexual Diversity in all its varied forms.
  • Conduct a scripture analysis of bible passages that are commonly used in same sex relations debates.
  • Be empowered to understand the intention of the Conference in St Louis and how it will impact both the UMC church in the World and its faithful in Kenya.
  • Understand that they have a responsibility and a platform more so as religious leaders and as the conscience of the society. They ought to speak peace, acceptance, inclusivity and love.

The training of the UMC Leadership under this curriculum is currently ongoing at St Paul University from the 24th to the 28th of September. It will be  exciting opportunity and another big win for the LGBTIQ movement if the Global Church moves to change the official teaching of the Church to accept and include LGBTIQ.

 

For more information contact:

Louis Sidigu

Program Officer,

Social and Economic Empowerment,

PEMA Kenya.

Sidigu@pemakenya.org

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