LISTENING SESSION: March 29
6:15 p.m. | Fellowship Hall
Purpose: The purpose of the Listening Session is to provide an opportunity for members of First United Methodist Church Montgomery to share thoughts and opinions related to denominational matters with the discernment sub-committee and others in attendance. The discernment sub-committee is there to listen, but there will be no feedback during this meeting. This is not a question and answer session.
Format: Attendees desiring the opportunity to speak may fill out a slip of paper beginning at 5:45. Names will be drawn out of a bowl at random. Due to time constraints, each speaker will only be allowed 3 minutes to speak. We expect to begin promptly at 6:15 and will move through as many speakers as time allows.
- When your name is called, step to the microphone and your 3 minutes to speak will begin.
- Please be respectful of others when speaking. This is a time to share your thought and opinions, but name calling and hateful speech will not be tolerated. If your comments are deemed inappropriate by the committee, the microphone will be turned off and you will be asked to return to your seat regardless of time remaining.
- When your 3 minutes are up, the microphone will be turned off. Return to your seat.
- Members of the audience should all listen with an open mind – listening for understanding rather than listening to make a response. The person at the microphone has the floor and is the only voice allowed at that time. Members of the audience may not cheer, boo, speak out from their seats, etc. Disorderly attendees will be asked to leave.
- The discernment committee will listen to each speaker and may take notes. There will be no feedback from the committee during this meeting.
BIBLICAL INTERPRETATION OF SEXUALITY: April 12
6:15 p.m. | Fellowship Hall
Dr. Jay Cooper and Dr. Jason Borders will lead this discussion. By nature of the topic, this session is pastoral in nature and sensitive for many members within our flock. It is asked that we maintain sensitivity in this conversation and that we commit to civility. This session will be framed, at the beginning, as a matter of interpretation around United Methodism. We all hold Scripture as the authoritative voice in our lives, and yet, as United Methodists in the Wesleyan tradition, we also utilize interpretative skills to guide our theology. From that framework, Dr. Borders will share a cross-section of interpretations related to the 6-7 verses of Scripture about human sexuality. For a denomination that is beginning to splinter around a few short verses on this topic, we feel it is important for us to know what those verses say, how they have been interpreted historically, how they are currently being interpreted, and why.