Petition 81180

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General Secretary Support (81180-GA-¶714)

Amend ¶714 by adding the following section as a new ¶714.9 and renumbering the rest of the paragraph sections accordingly:
9.    No individuals who have through a public article or statement made known their disagreement with the historic, biblical Christian understanding that homosexual practice, like any other form of extramarital sex, is incompatible with Christian teaching can be eligible for election as general secretary of a United Methodist general agency.  This provision shall not apply to persons employed prior to the 2008 General Conference, or to individuals who have sincerely recanted such past opposition to Christian teaching on marriage and sexuality.
This legislation shall take effect immediately upon the adjournment of the 2008 General Conference.

Rationale

Our general agencies play a key role in conveying our church’s teachings to our members and the wider public.  Amidst wider societal debates on sexual morality, it has been demoralizing when general secretaries have used the prestige of their position to publicly oppose our church’s official teaching on the matter.