Petition 80105

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Eligibility for Membership (80105-LC-¶214)

Amend ¶214 as follows:
¶ 214. Eligibility-The United Methodist Church is a part of the holy catholic (universal) church, as we confess in the Apostles’ Creed. In the church, Jesus Christ is proclaimed and professed as Lord and Savior. All people may attend its worship services, participate in its programs, and receive the sacraments and become members in any local church in the connection (¶ 4). Anyone may become a member in any local church in the connection after participating in the local Church’s membership class.  Once completion of the membership class the candidate(s) may present themselves for Church membership by taking the Baptismal Covenant or by reaffirmation of the Baptismal vows of the United Methodist Church which states: “do you receive and profess the Christian faith as contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments?” If the pastor determines that a candidate(s) for membership, whether by profession of faith or by certificate of transfer, is not ready to accept the Christian faith as contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testament the pastor may delay the request for membership until the candidate can affirm the teachings of the Old and New Testaments as stated in the Baptismal Covenant of the United Methodist Church.  In the case of persons whose disabilities prevent them from reciting the vows, their legal guardian[s], themselves members in full covenant relationship with God and the Church, the community of faith, may recite the appropriate vows on their behalf.


Rationale

By requiring the attendance of a membership class before acceptance of a person into Church membership will clarify to the candidate what the United Methodist Church believes and what the local church expects of its members as outlined in the Book of Discipline.  This will also clarify the eligibility of...