General Commission on UM Men will seek revisions to four resolutions
NASHVILLE, Tenn.––The General Commission on UM Men, meeting August 15-17, agreed to ask General Conference to revise four statements in the 2020 Book of Resolutions.
Support for clergywomen
The 20-member board of directors agreed to ask the 2020 gathering in Minneapolis to update a resolution supporting clergy women. The statement acknowledges that UM congregations “have not always welcomed the appointment of clergywomen and provided them with support following their appointment.” The proposed resolution urges UM Men organization to welcome women to the pulpit and to “share in the participation in the studies and activities of local chapters UM Men organizations.”
A resource to combat violence against women
The commission worked with the YWCA of Middle Tennessee to create Amending through Faith, an 8-week study designed to help men understand how their attitudes have created an environment that treats women as objects and tolerates abusive actions. Commission members asked General Conference to include this resource in a listing of actions designed to “engage men and boys as allies in the promotion of gender equality.”
Welcoming LDS Scouts
Noting that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will have ended its relationship with Boy Scouts of America on December 31, 2019, the commission is asking the assembly to encourage UM congregations to welcome LDS Scouts into their packs and troops.
A resolution titled “Expanding our outreach to men and youth” will expire and no longer be included in the 2020 Book of Resolutions if General Conference takes no action on the issue. Therefore, the commission updated the resolution with new research that finds “only 31 percent of American men attend church at least once a week compared to 40 percent of American women [and] only 10 percent of few U.S. churches maintain vibrant men’s ministry programs.” The commission encourages churches to offer Scout packs and troops, charter UM Men organizations, utilize training tools provided by the commission, invite people to serve as men’s ministry specialists or scouting ministry specialists, and to participate in Class Meetings.
One proposed change in the Book of Discipline
The commission agreed to seek one change in the Book of Discipline that reflects the fact that the Upper Room Living Prayer Center has discontinued its practice of receiving prayer requests through a toll-free telephone line. Prayers are now posted on a website and UM Men are encouraged to support those prayer requests. The proposed change indicates that UM Men will ensure there are prayer advocates at the conference, district and local church levels.