I’ve a couple concerns with when this surgery was scheduled. The most important is missing two Sundays of worship and the beginning of the season before Easter we call Lent on Ash Wednesday, March 6. Rev. Susan Weaver will be preaching both Sundays. Susan is known to many of us who are involved at PROP, and she will have great perspective on our theme, “Living in God’s Kind of Time.”
On Ash Wednesday Don Prestly and Deb Soderholm will lead our service of the Imposition of Ashes. Although this is a sacramental kind of event, it is not a sacrament of our church. And so it’s appropriate for Don and Deb to place the crosses of ash on your foreheads. I mean, who else would you want to do it?
The other concern I have is not being with you as news breaks from the Special General Conference of the United Methodist Church on sexuality and church unity (or better put, lack of church unity.) The conference ended today (Feb. 26) and I’m finding it difficult as I try to keep my blood pressure at an acceptable level for surgery. For me it is heartbreaking to report that the Special General Conference passed a plan that is more restrictive in language and practice concerning those of us who are LGBTQI.
Regardless of what has been decided at the General Conference, our focus at Eden Prairie UMC of being “Big Enough to Make a Difference, Small Enough to Care” …to everyone… has not changed! This mission we believe has come to us through the Holy Spirit, and no decision of any legislative body has the power to change this direction. Our task in these coming weeks and months is to continue to be a safe and nurturing place, now more than ever, especially for LGBTQI persons.
This Sunday at the end of worship Andrea Mardock of our Rainbow Team will offer a brief updated statement about this Special General Conference. Regardless of what was decided or not decided, this is not time for reactionary behavior. This is a God’s kind of time moment, a time to have a sense of clarity about who we are at EPUMC so that we can continue to focus on our mission even more faithfully.
Keep the Faith,