Let­ters to the ed­i­tor

The Covington News - - OPINION -

Gaither’s UMC on trans­gen­der is­sues

Dear Ed­i­tor: The United Methodist Church val­ues its con­nec­tional sys­tem of shar­ing the love of Je­sus Christ through­out the world. We, the mem­bers of Gaither’s United Methodist Church, also value our con­nec­tional sys­tem and find it nec­es­sary to ad­dress the ar­ti­cle ap­pear­ing in The Cov­ing­ton News Nov. 2.

The head­line reads, “UMC says trans­gen­der priest can stay” and refers to The United Methodist Church Ju­di­cial Coun­cil de­ci­sion No. 1074. This de­ci­sion al­lows Ann Gor­don, who had served as pas­tor for five years in Bal­ti­more, Md., to be re-ap­pointed af­ter re­ceiv­ing hor­mone ther­apy and trans­gen­der surgery. Ac­cord­ing to the rul­ing per the church’s of­fi­cial Web­site www.umc.org, the re-ap­point­ment was al­lowed as the cler­gyper­son was an or­dained elder in good stand­ing prior to the treat­ment and could not be ter­mi­nated un­less there had been ad­min­is­tra­tive or ju­di­cial ac­tion.

It is our po­si­tion that nei­ther the con­gre­ga­tion, the dis­trict su­per­in­ten­dent nor the bishop in author­ity over this cler­gyper­son ap­pro­pri­ately in­ter­vened in this sit­u­a­tion. Ti­tus 1:7-9 states, “For a bishop must be blame­less as a stew­ard of God … Hold­ing fast the faith­ful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doc­trine both to ex­hort and to con­vince the gain­say­ers.” Be­cause of our pre­vi­ously men­tioned con­nec­tion, we, as a United Methodist Church, want to make it known that we do not agree that this cler­gyper­son re­mains in good stand­ing and has bro­ken the hon­ored trust war­ranted an or­dained elder. Based on our be­lief in God’s word and be­ing mem­bers of The United Methodist Church con­nec­tion, the mem­bers of Gaither’s are de­vel­op­ing and plan to sub­mit a ju­di­cial com­plaint that we feel will re­sult in the proper ju­di­cial ac­tion.

We at Gaither’s be­lieve the en­tire word of God is true and with­out er­ror, that the word of God is in­spired by the Holy Spirit and the word of God is our ex­am­ple and in­struc­tion. God’s word states in Ro­mans 1:25, “Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and wor­shipped and served the crea­ture more than the Cre­ator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.” And in 1 Corinthi­ans 6:19-20, “What? know you not that your body is the tem­ple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: there­fore glo­rify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

The United Methodist Church television ads state, “We have open hearts, open minds and open doors.” Gaither’s hearts are open to truth Ro­mans, (10:10) “For with the heart man be­lieveth unto right­eous­ness; and the mouth con­fes­sion is made unto sal­va­tion”; our minds are open to re­newal, (Ro­mans 12:2) “And be not con­formed to this world; but be ye trans­formed by the re­new­ing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and ac­cept­able, and per­fect will of God.” Our doors are open to whoso­ever will, (John 10:7) “then said Je­sus unto them again, Ver­ily, ver­ily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.”

Visit our Web­site, www.gaither­sumc.org, for up­dates as we live out our ven­ture through the body of Christ, known as The United Methodist Church, a mem­ber of Christ’s uni­ver­sal church.

The mem­ber­ship of Gaither’s United Methodist Church

Where were you on elec­tion night?

Dear Ed­i­tor: I would like to ask the cit­i­zens of Cov­ing­ton where you were on Tues­day dur­ing the city elec­tions? We are given the right to vote as well as the free­dom of speech. I was shocked to see the low rate of vot­ers who cared enough to come out and vote. It was hard for me to go vote with arthri­tis, but I went to vote for my per­son of choice for mayor.

If the city does not more for­ward, we only have the vot­ers who did not vote to blame. They also have no right to com­plain.

Please do not give up the right to vote in the next elec­tion in Cov­ing­ton. Thanks so much to the pool vol­un­teers who spent hours as­sist­ing vot­ers. Thanks also to Mayor Ram­sey for the years he has spent as our ded­i­cated mayor. We will miss you but wish you good health and God’s bless­ing on you and your fam­ily. Diane Skin­ner


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