Associates in Advocacy now has two sites on the internet. Our primary help site is at http://www.aiateam.org/. There AIA seeks to offer aid to troubled pastors, mainly those who face complaints and whose careers are on the line.

Help is also available to their advocates, their caregivers, Cabinets, and others trying to work in that context.

This site will be a blog. On it we will address issues and events that come up.

We have a point of view about ministry, personnel work, and authority. We intend to take the following very seriously:


Some of our denomination's personnel practices have real merit. Some are deeply flawed. To tell the difference, we go to these criteria to help us know the difference.

We also have a vision of what constitutes healthy leadership and authority. We believe it is in line with Scripture, up-to-date managerial practice, and law.

To our great sadness, some pastors who become part of the hierarchy of the church, particularly the Cabinet, have a vision based on their being in control as "kings of the hill," not accountable to anyone and not responsible to follow the Discipline or our faith and practice. They do not see that THE GOLDEN RULE applies to what they do.

If you are reading this, the chances are you are not that way. We hope what we say and do exemplify our own best vision and will help you fulfill yours. But we cannot just leave arrogance, incompetence, and ignorance to flourish. All of us have the responsibility to minimize those in our system.

We join you in fulfilling our individual vow of expecting to be perfect in love in this life and applying that vow to our corporate life in the United Methodist Church.

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If you have any questions or suggestions, direct them to Rev. Jerry Eckert. His e-mail address is aj_eckert@hotmail.com. His phone number is 941 743 0518. His address is 20487 Albury Drive, Port Charlotte, FL 33952.

Thank you.


Thursday, May 28, 2009

Re: JCM 1111


If there was any concern about the United Methodist’s two positions on homosexuality and related issues among Judicial Council members, that was not reflected in the decision. The Council took a strict interpretation as did its predecessor Council that what is said in Paragraphs (PP) 2702 and 341.6 make any reference to supporting marriage or union services for same gender couples illegal under the Discipline.

This case was held over from the 2008 Fall session in order for all the documents to be sent in by the Conference from which the matter came.

A resolution was passed by the California-Nevada Conference to commend retired Elders who would be willing to conduct same gender ceremonies. A question of law was raised about it and the bishop ruled that while commendable, the resolution encouraged violating church law and was null and void.

Her ruling ended the resolution’s life in that conference until the Council reviewed the decision.

Judicial Council Decision 1111 supports the bishop.

The only dissent indicated an interpretation of the resolution which did not “prescribe or recommend violation” of the Discipline but it had only one signer.

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