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.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

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, July 20, 2017

JCD 1340

Can a Jurisdiction prohibit church trials?

The Northeastern Jurisdictional Conference tried a creative way to draw attention to the conflict in the Church over homosexuality.  They passed a resolution that directed conference Councils on Finance and Administration to withhold funds for church trials that are for violations of church law about marrying homosexuals, being self-avowed practicing homosexuals, and related matters.

The same result as in many cases before the Council caused the resolution to fail muster as church law or policy.  It is not aspirational and resolves that people "negate, ignore, or contradict The Book of Discipline."  The bishop stated that in his ruling, adding that it also violated the constitution's requirements for trials.

The interesting thing to me was that the conference voted 2 to 1 in favor of the resolution.  That vote, even in the face of likely legal rejection by means of any appeal process, is amazing.  Those who brought the resolution knew all about past rulings on resolutions of the sort they were raising.  Their persistence matches that of the ones who brought about the anti-homosexual laws forty five years ago and who are still the majority at General Conference.  But, as in the Northeastern Jurisdiction, will the General Conference vote trend the way it has in the NEJ?

No comments: