[Release] UM Queer Collective Collaborates in Pursuit of Progress


[Release] UM Queer Collective Collaborates in Pursuit of Progress

Thursday, May 2, 2024

United Methodist Church Reverses Anti-LGBTQ+ Discrimination in Historic Votes

UM Queer Collective Collaborates in Pursuit of Progress

CHARLOTTE – The General Conference of The United Methodist Church (UMC) has eliminated anti-LGBTQ+ legislation from its Book of Discipline, effectively ending 52 years of institutionally sanctioned discrimination. The global body of 862 voting delegates (about 740 seated) has spent almost two weeks in unusual civility removing prohibitions against same-sex marriages; ordination of LGBTQ+ clergy; bans against funding education about LGBTQ+ affirmation; and the belief that “the practice of homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching.”

The advocacy of the new Queer Delegates Caucus (QDC) has been instrumental to these historic advances in the world’s third-largest mainline denomination. The QDC contains 58 delegates, 26 of whom are General Conference voting delegates. 

At this General Conference, the efforts of the QDC have been augmented by longer-time caucus groups including Affirmation, Reconciling Ministries Network (RMN), and the United Methodist Queer Clergy Caucus (UMQCC). The organizations refer to their collaboration in this General Conference as the UM Queer Collective.

The UM Queer Collective acknowledges the labor of organizers, caucus staff, and allies throughout the Church, as well as past advocates whose work contributed to this progress. Says Rev. Austin Adkinson, co-convener of UMQCC: “Whether LGBTQIA+ people even have a place in our Church was the sole topic of debate the last time United Methodists met as a General Conference. Five years ago, the UMQCC proposed A Simple Plan to the General Conference. It seemed preposterous to most of the church then, but its essence is Church law now. A new era for our Church is emerging, and we look with awe at where God is leading the UMC.”

QDC delegate Rev. Effie McAvoy affirms the importance of these legislative victories: “This means that those who are LGBTQIA+ and called into the ministry of the ordained will be able to do so. This will empower the called to do the good work of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world!”

RMN Executive Director Jan Lawrence urges the Church to continue advocating for change. “It’s not over until every place of worship, every community, affirms the sacred worth of every queer and trans child of God. We should celebrate today. And then, next week, let’s walk in the sunlight and get back to work.”

The UM Queer Collective is holding a brief news conference at the Press Room in the Charlotte Convention Center at the first plenary break, estimated to be at about 9:45 AM ET.

For more information, contact:

Ophelia Hu Kinney, Director of Communications
Reconciling Ministries Network
(207) 899-6956