Central United Methodist Church of Decatur AL
Our Beliefs & Mission

OUR MISSION

Our Mission is simple and based on the Great commandment (Matthew 22: 37-39) and Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20) of Jesus.

Central United Methodist Church exists to:   Love God, Love others and Serve the world

We seek to fulfill our mission by meeting all where they are in order to make all fully committed disciples of Jesus Christ.

A fully committed disciple of Jesus Christ demonstrates an increasing love of God and others by: 

  •  Drawing others to Christ
    – Maintaining a list of unchurched friends with whom he or she relates in order to bring them to Christ and the church
  • Participating in community with other Disciples of Christ
    – worships God weekly
    – participates regularly in a small group
  • Living to Serve others
    – serves people in the church
    – serves people in the community
    – serves people in the world
  • Knowing and obeying Scripture
    – is involved in a disciplined and ongoing study of the Bible
    – can cite a recent change in thoughts, attitudes or behavior as a result of his or her Bible study
 

BELIEFS OVERVIEW

In his book Why I Am a United Methodist, our Bishop William Willimon writes:

I find that United Methodism has five great gifts to offer our troubled, but still blessed and beloved-by-God world:

(1) Stress on the need for a personal, experienced relationship with Christ.
(We can know Christ, not just know about him.)

(2) The need for structure, discipline, and form in meeting the challenges of living a Christian life today.
(Some things are too important to be left to chance.)

 

(3) The importance of lifelong journey and self-examination, assisted by others, in developing our lives in Christ.
(We can grow and be better people than we are right now.)

(4) The refusal to separate spiritual needs from human, material needs.
(God loves whole persons, not just detached "souls".)

(5) The stress upon the church, its proclamation, sacraments, and other "ordinary means of grace" against our rampant individualism and subjectivism.
(Religion — the Christian one, that is — is not a private affair.)
 
Here’s another summary of Methodist beliefs by our former pastor Mitchell Williams:

“THE WAY FORWARD”

  For the past 50 years (the whole life of the United Methodist Church) there have been discussions about human sexuality and how inclusive or exclusive we should be with regard to persons who are homosexual, bisexual or transgender. Every four years, when we have our quadrennial General Conference, there are proposals and counter-proposals for how the Book of Discipline should read with regard to this issue. The General Conference is the only body that can speak in the UMC that can determine policies and guidelines.

  The discussions have heated up in the past years. They came to a head in 2016 as the General Conference was paralyzed by disagreement. To help find a way forward, the General Conference and the Bishops established the Commission on The Way Forward. The commission’s task was to come up with a plan to move beyond this impasse. This Commission was made up of clergy and lay persons from all over the world, representing every facet of the UMC.

  In May, 2018, the Commission on the Way Forward presented a report to the Council of Bishops. This report will be submitted to the 2019 Special Called Session of the General Conference meeting in St. Louis, Feb. 23-26. Our Bishop, Deborah Wallace-Padgett, was a member of the Commission. She sent out a blog on May 4th with some of the points of the report. This blog is available at www.umcna.org under the heading of the Bishop’s blog post.

Here are a few excerpts of her blog:

“Motion: Having received and considered the extensive work of the Commission on a Way Forward, the Council of Bishops will submit a report to the special session of the General Conference in 2019 that includes:
  • All three plans (The Traditionalist Plan, The One Church Plan and The Connectional Conference Plan) for a way forward considered by the Commission and the Council.
  • The Council’s recommendation of The One Church Plan.”

“Full details of the plans and accompanying legislation will be forthcoming once they are edited and translated into the multiple languages of the General Conference. This will allow United Methodists from all around the globe to receive the information at the same time. As bishops we have covenanted to not discuss details or legislation of the three plans until they are available to everyone.”
 
  This is obviously a critical time for the UMC, and this report is something we need to prayerfully read and discuss. The report was finally made available July 18, 2018 and is available on line as a pdf document at http://www.umc.org/who-we-are/judicial-council-october-2018-docket. Choose docket no. 1018-12. We urge you to read the entire report, as it appears. Just reading a third party “synopsis” of the report will not give you the whole picture. We will schedule an open round table discussion here at Central UMC once everyone has had an opportunity to read the report.

Grace and Peace,

Pastors Dorothy Ann & Fred Webster
 
 

 


Making All Things New
Sunday, 19 May 2019

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