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Update on Asbury’s Discernment Process

I’m writing to give you all an update on the work from our discernment team regarding our next steps as a congregation following our disaffiliation process. I’m grateful for the prayerful work and dedication from the people on that team as we evaluated the different options for our church to take.

Discernment Team Recommendation:
After researching different Wesleyan denominations as well as the option of becoming an independent church, our discernment team unanimously agreed that joining the recently formed Global Methodist Church (GMC) is the best decision for our congregation going forward. The team arrived at this decision through prayer, conversation, and research on the doctrine and structure of all the various options we looked at.

There are several informational documents that go over the basic information about the Global Methodist Church, and I encourage you to read them by clicking on the links at the top of this page. For many reasons, our discernment team felt that the GMC is the best way for us to have a sense of continuity with our Methodist and Wesleyan heritage, while also being a wonderful opportunity to be a part of something new that God is doing.

On Monday (4-17-23), the discernment team presented our recommendation to Asbury’s Administrative Council. After presenting our research and our recommendation, the council unanimously agreed to accept this work from the discernment team and to recommend that our congregation move toward joining the Global Methodist Church.

Informational Sessions for Congregation:
In order to make sure that you are able to hear this information and ask any questions that you might have, we are going to have three informational sessions where members from our discernment team and myself will present this material and be available to answer any questions. We are going to go over the same material at each session, so you only need to come to one to hear what our team will present. I hope everyone who wants to is able to come out to one of these sessions.

Information Sessions:

Wed May 3 at 6pm
Wed May 10 at 6pm
Wed May 17 at 6pm

Process Going Forward: Church Conference on Wed. May 24 at 6PM
To join the Global Methodist Church, we will have a church conference to formally approve to join it. The vote requires a simple majority of our members present to pass. Our plan is to hold this church conference on May 24 at 6PM to formally approve our church to join the GMC in a service of prayer, praise, and looking forward to where God is leading us.

Encouragement about the Future:
I know that the past several months have been challenging for our congregation. Taking up these difficult decisions about who we are and where we are going has been a heavy burden to carry. My hope is that all of us, myself included, can begin to transition from a season of decision to a season of healing, where we allow God to remind us of who we are and of what we are called to do. In many ways, facing this denominational division has distracted us from our core mission: to make disciples of Jesus. I’m excited to dive back into that all-important work, and I hope you are too. The harvest is plentiful, my friends.

Also, know that I am very encouraged by the direction of our discernment team and our administrative council. As your pastor, I want you to know that I believe whole-heartedly that joining the Global Methodist Church is the best way forward for us as a congregation. In my mind, to cease to be connectional (connected with other churches) and to become independent is to cease to be Methodist or Wesleyan. That shared accountability and encouragement in Christ, that sense that we are a part of the Church with a big C and not just a lone congregation, has always been essential to who we are as the people called Methodists. That connection is not something we want to lose, and I believe the Global Methodist Church is a wonderful way for us to re-discover the power of a group of churches connected together in the name of Jesus. The GMC gives us this sense of connection, while also giving us the opportunity to have newfound local control over our congregation’s ministry and property. It to me is an exciting combination.

My hope as your pastor is to give you reassurance about taking this step into the GMC. I also want to make sure that there is space for you to ask questions and be a part of this conversation. Please email me (pastorcambron@gmail.com) and I would love to set up a time to talk with you about any of this. I have been and will continue to pray for all of us during this process, that God will lead us, guide us, and make us together more like Jesus.

Peace in Christ,
Pastor Cambron