You are invited to gather in the birthplace of Methodism in America for an extraordinary event!
"Ecumenical Ordination in a Methodist Tradition Minus the Closet"
October 19, 2008 at historic Mount Vernon Place UMC in Baltimore, Maryland
For six years, The Church Within a Church Movement (CWAC) Coordinating Team has prayed for and planned the process of Extraordinary Ordination of qualified people denied ordination in the United Methodist denomination because of sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, or inclusive-progressive theology.
We are now ready to proceed with an "Ecumenical Ordination in a Methodist Tradition Minus the Closet." The Church Within A Church Movement will ordain two women who have been blocked from ordination in the United Methodist process. They completed the substantial Church Within A Church process and were approved in March 2008 at the CWAC Palm Springs meeting. United Methodist leaders and leaders in the Presbyterian, Lutheran, Catholic and United Church of Christ will participate in this ecumenical event.
Richard Peck, in the January/February 2008 edition of The Interpreter, noted:
"After Anglican clergy fled America during the Revolution, Wesley was faced with caring for some 15,000 followers there. The Bishop of London refused to ordain any clergy for him, so Wesley ordained ministers on his own authority, an important step in the creation of the Methodist church in America. The Methodist Episcopal Church in the United States was organized in Baltimore on December 24, 1784."
We know this now as the historic Christmas Conference when the Methodist Church in America was founded. At this conference, they edited the Articles of Religion from 39 to 24 and established their own Book of Discipline and prayer book.
Since 1972, injustice has prevailed in the name of biblical interpretation and tradition as gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender people and their supporters have been excluded and punished for their honesty and integrity whenever they have refused to participate in the "don't ask, don't tell" practices of the church. Members have been left to their own resources to find ministry within their own tradition. It's time for a second "Christmas Conference!"
The first Christmas Conference was at Lovely Lane Church in Baltimore, Maryland. This second "Christmas Conference" themed Living Tomorrow Today, will be hosted a few blocks away at Mount Vernon Place UMC in Baltimore. The burial plate of Francis Asbury (1745-1816), the first bishop of the Methodist Church in America, is located in the church's narthex, and each week the gospel lesson is read from the pulpit that Asbury used when he preached in Baltimore. The Mount Vernon Place Church was built in the 1870s with a large Gothic style sanctuary.
Check www.cwac. for details