greater spirit of diversity

Last week there were gatherings of United Methodist delegates all around the U.S. for electing new bishops. While bishops are elected for life, they reach mandatory retirement age and no longer actively serve as bishops. So, there were 13 new bishops elected around the U.S.

 

While it was expected that this new class would be clearly progressive, the magnitude of the diversity, the firsts, and the progressive stances were more than expected. This group includes the first Native American bishop (from Oklahoma's OIMC), the first Filipino American bishop, and first Japanese American bishop. Also elected was the second openly gay, married bishop, this time an African-American man. Of the 13 elected, 8 are people of color and 7 are women, bringing to 44% the number of women bishops.

 

Each of the 5 Conferences passed resolutions calling for full inclusion of LGBTQ+ persons.

 

While much of the church is reeling over the exiting of 10-15 % of our churches, these gatherings showed a great spirit of unity. We move forward together with a greater spirit of diversity – and in that there is strength.

 

Jeannie

 

 

 

 

  

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