of North Georgia
It is with a heavy heart that we inform our North Georgia community that, faced with our conference leaders’ unwillingness to negotiate a disaffiliation agreement, 186 churches have filed suit today against the leadership of the North Georgia Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church.
The suit requests the North Georgia Bishop, Trustees, and Cabinet to restore the process that was in place last year which allowed 70 churches in our Annual Conference to disaffiliate using a provision (par. 2553) found within the denomination’s Book of Discipline. We have repeatedly made this request to Conference leaders since receiving notice of “the pause” on December 28th. Regrettably there appears to be no willingness by leaders to resume that process or to even negotiate. We deeply regret the actions of Annual Conference leaders and the untenable situation in which it places hundreds of churches in our Conference.
We recognize that taking legal action against the UMC is a drastic step. Be assured that every possible option has been explored to avoid this moment. We trust that this present course will restore the process so we all can continue on this journey toward disaffiliation.
We encourage you to share this news with your community this weekend, so that you as a church can then turn your attention to Holy Week and focus on all our glorious God has done for us through the cross of Jesus Christ. The cross is the very grace of God at work in the world. It is our hope, our joy, our one option for peace.
Thank you, Jesus, for the grace of the cross and the promise of resurrection. In this season especially, we can lean on that promise with a fresh appreciation for all the ways resurrection happens in the world. God has got this, friends, and he will see us through.
Let’s worship God on Sunday with joy and expectancy. As they say at Eastertime, “Its Friday, but Sunday’s comin’!”