NOT. ONE. Not one person representing moderate or conservative perspectives on the inclusion and exclusion of LGBTQ persons in the UMC chose to attend the meeting in Chicago to which we were all invited today. Here are our reflections after the meeting.
I do agree that more talk/conversation/dialog/holy conferencing …. are probably not going to bring resolution to an issue that has spawned countless such talks. Bagging on a group for missing just the latest one in a very long string is a cheap shot, too. Resolving the impasse calls for divine intervention, but I suspect both sides could not agree on what kind of intervention was actually divine. For what it’s worth, if I DID have the answers to this I would expect to be elected Bishop without even campaigning for the office.
A part of the frustration of this meeting was that the hosts knew days beforehand that more than half the participants were not going to make it and did not either cancel the meeting or let those coming know of the changed makeup. Love Prevails will continue to engage and attend a next meeting of the original invitees in September. We await a next movement of a Spirit of Pentecost entering a fearful room to bring us out and talk about the Love of God across the usual boundaries. This is not scriptable by any religious technique and so we wait expectantly, faithfully witness to real lives being lost through the false-witness of “incompatibility”, and proceed hopefully.
“Being stood up” should be an incredible event (is that no longer rude behavior?), except that, as you say, it happens again and again. Yes, to ongoing “trickle up courage.”