Petition 80028

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Human Sexuality (80028-C2-¶161.G)

Amend ¶161G, as follows:
    We recognize ...
Although all persons are sexual beings whether or not they are married, we believe sexual relations are only clearly affirmed in the marriage bond. We reject all sexual expressions that damage or destroy the humanity God has given us as birthright, and we affirm only that sexual expression that enhances that same humanity. We believe that sexual relations where one or both partners are exploitative, abusive, or promiscuous are beyond the parameters of acceptable Christian behavior and are ultimately destructive to individuals, families, and the social order.
We deplore all forms of the commercialization and exploitation of sex, with their consequent cheapening and degradation of human personality. We call for strict global enforcement of laws prohibiting the sexual exploitation or use of children by adults and encourage efforts to hold perpetrators legally and financially responsible. We call for the establishment of adequate protective services, guidance, and counseling opportunities for children thus abused. We insist that all persons, regardless of age, gender, marital status, or sexual orientation, are entitled to have their human and civil rights ensured.  We encourage civil authorities to enact laws that will ensure full civil and economic rights for persons in civil unions and marriages without regard to the gender of the partners.
We recognize ...
Homosexual persons no less than heterosexual persons are individuals of sacred worth. All persons need the ministry and guidance of the church in their struggles for human fulfillment, as well as the spiritual and emotional care of a fellowship that enables reconciling relationships
with God, with others, and with self. The United Methodist Church does not condone the practice of homosexuality and consider this practice incompatible with Christian teaching. We  While Christians of good faith differ on what Christian teaching reveals regarding homosexuality, we affirm that God's grace is available to all, and we will seek to live together in Christian community. We implore families and churches not to reject or condemn lesbian and gay members and friends. We commit ourselves to be in ministry for and with all persons.
  

Rationale

Christians of good faith (including theologians) are not of one mind regarding scripture and the practice of homosexuality. John Wesley in his sermon #39 on 2 Kings 10:15 said: “Though we cannot think alike, may we not love alike?  May we not be of one heart, though we are not...