In June 2011, The Wisconsin Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church tried Rev. Amy DeLong for being what the church calls a “self-avowed practicing homosexual” and for doing a Holy Union for two loving women. In preparation for the trial, Rev. Amy called together a support team and trial team under the banner Love On Trial (see Love on Trial website here).
After a trial that advanced the cause of LGBTQI clergy and brought forth a remarkable restorative justice decision, there was a discernment retreat to determine what was next. Some within the support team decided to move on to other ministries. Some decided to continue to walk with Amy through her sentence and to be present at the Wisconsin Annual Conference when she presented her proposal to deal with adversarial relationships among the clergy (see link to the covenant document presented at the 2013 Wisconsin Annual Conference here). Those continuing on shifted their focus by renaming themselves — Love Prevails.
On March 7, 2012, with General Conference coming at the end of April, Amy invited additional people from around the country to think together on how to make a strong and visible impact at General Conference. This planning arose because The Love Your Neighbor Coalition that was going to advocate for repeal of discriminatory legislation against LGBTQI were not clear about the strategies or tactics to meet this goal. Love Prevails began weekly conference calls to discuss their own witness. Within a few weeks, seven people committed to continue on to General Conference in Tampa, Florida as Love Prevails. Read an account of the witness of this core team and other activist volunteers made in Tampa here.
Early in 2013, core members of Love Prevails met to begin talking about an ongoing witness and campaign that would move boldly towards the protest and repeal of anti-gay language and practice in the denomination and the United Methodist Book of Discipline . Soon after, Love Prevails began regular conference calls, began to recruit new members of the core team, and defined the contours of our current campaign: Disclose, Divest, Disrupt.
Love Prevails is a ministry of Kairos CoMotion (see website here).The Kairos Board of Directors provides program oversight and activist support for Love Prevails. Kairos CoMotion is Love Prevails’ fiscal agent.
Current members of Love Prevails:
Dr. Julie Todd
Rev. Sue Laurie
Rev. Will Green
Laci Lee Adams
Dr. Mary Lou Taylor
Brenda Smith White
Rev. Wesley White
David E. Braden