Military Service Regardless of Sexual Orientation

The United Methodist Church has historically been opposed to discrimination in society including the military. Our anti-discrimination stance is supported primarily through Jesus’ teachings about radical love and the acceptance of those persons living on the margins of society. Throughout Jesus’ life, this radical love was shared when Jesus healed the sick, conversed with women, ate with the rejected and brought hope to the hopeless. We see visibly the call to embrace others and not make judgment: “Do not judge, so that you may not be judged.

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Pastoral Care and the AIDS Epidemic in Native American Communities

WHEREAS, the AIDS disease is of epidemic proportions; and

WHEREAS, pastoral care training does not take into consideration the unique cultural and spiritual healing methods of the Native American community; and

WHEREAS, a national consultation on pastoral care and AIDS for Native Americans would provide sound cultural insights for The United Methodist Church in the area of pastoral care for Native American pastors; and

WHEREAS, a program of this nature would provide nurture for Native American pastors and their continuing education,

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Healing of Post-Abortion Stress

WHEREAS, we recognize that there is a legal right to an abortion, we also recognize that some regret that event later in life,

WHEREAS, the church should be about offering healing ministries for all types of brokenness,

Therefore, be it resolved, that the 2004 General Conference of The United Methodist Church urge pastors to become informed about the symptoms and behaviors associated with post-abortion stress; and

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World AIDS Day Observance

Each year, World AIDS Day is observed on December 1. It is a time for special programs on HIV/AIDS education and religious worship services that focus on intercessory and healing prayer, hope in God, and love and compassion in the midst of the HIV/AIDS pandemic.

We recommend that United Methodists be encouraged to observe World AIDS Day on or around December 1. We further recommend that voluntary offerings be given to “Global HIV/AIDS Program Development” (UMCOR Advance #982345-7).

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Abolition of Sex Trafficking

“Again I looked and saw all the oppression that was taking place under the sun: I saw the tears of the oppressed—and they have no comforter; power was on the side of their oppressors—and they have no comforter.” Ecclesiastes 4:1

“But this is a people plundered and looted, all of them trapped in pits or hidden in prisons. They have become plunder, with no one to rescue them; they have been made loot, with no one to say, “Send them back.” Isaiah 42:22

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Regarding the General Council on Finance and Administration

[The General Council on Finance and Administration] shall be responsible for ensuring that no board, agency, committee, commission, or council shall give United Methodist funds to any gay caucus or group, or otherwise use such funds to promote the acceptance of homosexuality or violate the expressed commitment of The United Methodist Church “not to reject or condemn lesbian and gay members and friends” (¶ 161.F). The council shall have the right to stop such expenditures.19 This restriction shall not limit the Church’s ministry in response to the HIV epidemic.

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Regarding clergy

While persons set apart by the Church for ordained ministry are subject to all the frailties of the human condition and the pressures of society, they are required to maintain the highest standards of holy living in the world. The practice of homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching. Therefore self-avowed practicing homosexuals1 are not to be certified as candidates, ordained as ministers, or appointed to serve in The United Methodist Church.2

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Our Social Creed

166 We believe in God, Creator of the world; and in Jesus Christ, the Redeemer of creation. We believe in the Holy Spirit, through whom we acknowledge God’s gifts, and we repent of our sin in misusing these gifts to idolatrous ends.

We affirm the natural world as God’s handiwork and dedicate ourselves to its preservation, enhancement, and faithful use by humankind.

We joyfully receive for ourselves and others the blessings of community, sexuality, marriage, and the family.

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