For Immediate Release
April 22, 2021
Connectional Table approves proposal for a conversation about identity, vision, connectionalism and mission
At its April 22nd on-line meeting, the Connectional Table approved a proposal to use the next year to host conversations about the future United Methodist Church, including how articulating identity and vision might impact issues of connectionalism and mission.
The Connectional Table approaches such work grounded in its purpose and essential functions. As noted in the Book of Discipline, The Connectional Table’s purpose is “…for the discernment and articulation of the vision for the church and the stewardship of the mission, ministries, and resources of The United Methodist Church as determined by the actions of the General Conference and in consultation with the Council of Bishops, ¶904.
In line with its essential functions, the Connectional Table would be a connecting point to bring together for conversation various groups and others who are committed to staying within the UMC. The focus of such conversations would not be not the development of legislation. Instead, it would be to engage United Methodists across the global connection in clarifying identity and shaping vision for the future of The United Methodist Church.
Noted Bishop Christian Alsted, Chair of the Connectional Table, “While we are in the midst of a global pandemic and anticipate the postponed General Conference, we have a window to pray and to think deeply about the future of United Methodism and the many missional challenges and opportunities we are facing in our multi-facetted global denomination. I am excited that the Connectional Table has decided to facilitate such discerning conversations – this is exactly how we are supposed to serve the church.
The CT engaged in-depth conversation about the implications of the proposal with invited guests, including bishops, delegates and others from around the global connection. Noted CCMO, Bigham-Tsai, “I am praying that United Methodists around the connection who are already having these conversations and those who are not yet having them will join us around this table. It is vitally important that we begin to clarify who we are and envision the future of our church together.”
The proposal is available on the CT website and has been translated into Portuguese and French.
About the Connectional Table:
The Connectional Table works to steward the mission, vision and ministries of The United Methodist Church. For more information, please visit umcct.org