Day: June 24, 2016
The decision of Committee 11 to substitute the original overture (passed by the Presbytery of New York City and concurred with by Hudson River, Genesee Valley and Chicago) with a softer version supported by Covenant Network and others is a step forward and the continuation of an important discussion. (See Covenant Network’s statement here.)
However, That All May Freely Serve and others continue to pray for a final overture on the floor of plenary later today that returns more closely to the original overture and bravely acknowledges the harms done to the LGBTQ/Q community over the last four decades. There is a substantial difference between an admission of harms done and regrets for how some might feel harmed, which is one of the vast discrepancies between the original overture and what is on the docket for tonight’s plenary session.
What produced the changes? Primarily, the attempt to balance concerns for others who might be offended or feel “set aside” by a stronger statement – has produced what That All May Freely Serve sees as an uneven and diminished revised overture, much like those that are often written when it comes to queer folk in the church.
Throughout this assembly as with those before, we have witnessed just how frustratingly slow and cautious life can sometimes be – especially when we have the chance to truly change things with just a bit more trust and courage.
By this evening, Thursday, we will know just how much of a step forward the GA222 will choose to take, when Item 11-05 reaches the floor of the General Assembly, sometime around 7:30 PM Pacific Time
So, we ask for your continued prayers, with enormous gratitude to all who have worked so hard in this journey for the church to acknowledge how wrong it has been, apologize and promise to do better in bringing the Love of God to all with the greatest possible witness and voice. It may be that such a message has not been as important to be heard – as it is today, continuing to reel from the horror of Orlando in our community and for those who love us.