Petition 81218

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Litigation (81218-LC-¶219)

   Amend ¶ 219:
   ¶ 219. Mutual Responsibility—Faithful discipleship includes...and celebrate the joys of fellow members. For this reason, with the possible exception of meeting the legal requirements for divorce (¶ 161D), members may not initiate litigation against other Christians; such lawsuits are forbidden by Scripture (1 Corinthians 6:1-8) and the General Rules. A Christian is called to speak the truth in love, always ready to confront conflict in a spirit of forgiveness and reconciliation.

Rationale

Scripture (referenced above), the General Rules (¶ 103, p. 73), and the Methodist and Evangelical United Brethren Disciplines prior to 1939 and 1968 all expressly prohibited Christians’ taking other Christians to court. Granting an exception for divorce is a regrettable alternative to enduring with adultery, abandonment, or abuse.