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More “The Methodist Divide” Rebuttals

Dear Editor: I feel compelled to respond to the article on the split of the United Methodist Church since most of the information in it is inaccurate. The writer uses numerous examples about progressive Christianity; however, the United Methodist Church is NOT becoming a progressive church. The United Methodist Church will keep the same doctrinal standards and articles of faith it has always had. These are listed in the Book of Discipline of the United Methodist Church and include statements affirming the authority of the Scriptures, the virgin birth, the Deity of Christ, salvation through the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross and his resurrection from the dead. The United Methodist Church has not changed its position on marriage, but this may happen in the future. I also include a summary of some statements in a letter issued recently by some pastors and laity in the Alabama-West Florida Conference which reflect the thoughts of those who are remaining in the United Methodist Church: The United Methodist Church has 12 million members in over 100 countries. United Methodism looks different in different parts of the US, not to mention in Africa or the Philippines. Our church is very diverse, and that is one of its strengths. The founder of Methodism, John Wesley, said that a Methodist has two marks: the love of God in his heart and love of his neighbor as himself. We have members who kneel together for Holy Communion, knowing that they disagree on how best to follow Jesus. They choose humility and loving service to God and neighbor over any issue that can divide them. The world does not need more denominations but more of Jesus Christ and those willing to follow him. United Methodists will love our fellow church members, and our neighbors of all kinds, despite our differences. (See to read the complete letter.) Carol Banks Lifelong United Methodist Dear Editor: It is ridiculous that the author of the recent article in the Vidalia Advance on the Methodist split implies that United Methodists are “Progressives.” Both Methodist groups believe strongly in the basic facts of Christianity and study from the Holy Bible. Irene C. Hodges

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