Thank you to everyone who attended the Special Church Conference at Buncombe Street on Sunday,…
|The Apostle Paul is warning Timothy to be aware of the false teaching of those who don’t preach sound doctrine. Paul’s warning was prophetic, given what is occurring in the UMC. We are witnessing many in the UMC who are “turning their ears away from the truth” just as Paul said. Here are some reasons Buncombe Street needs to leave the UMC:|
|-The UMC is leaving traditional churches behind as they transition to a more progressive and less Bible-centric denomination. |
-The UMC is a large, cumbersome and expensive bureaucracy. The UMC collects more than $54 million per year in apportionments. Some of these funds, including those that go to our 13 seminaries, are being spent to accelerate the transition of the UMC to a more progressive denomination.
-Buncombe Street spends over $400,000 a year on UMC apportionments. This money, in many cases, would be better used to support local ministries and missions valued by the members of Buncombe Street. Many of the spending decisions currently being made by the UMC (on our behalf) should be made by our lay leaders and clergy. Regarding the various UMC charities, leaving the UMC does not prevent Buncombe Street from continuing to fund any of the UMC charities that we currently support.
-The UMC has interpreted and enforced the Book of Discipline for its own benefit. This policy is financially and spiritually detrimental to the traditional churches and their members.
-The UMC is currently making it very difficult for Buncombe Street and other UMC churches to leave the denomination. Bishops are not consistent in their rulings, and SC is one of only two conferences in the UMC in which the Bishop has not defined an exit path for its churches.
-At the 2024 General Conference, the UMC will likely vote to abolish all language in the Book of Discipline that governs the exclusion of practicing LBGTQ clergy and the exclusion of gay marriage. Additionally, changes to the Book of Discipline in 2024 regarding disaffiliation will likely make it very difficult, if not impossible, for churches to leave the denomination at all.
What Can Remain
|As the Israelites trusted God in their journey to the promised land, we must also trust God in our journey to disaffiliate so Buncombe Street can continue to be the church we all joined. To that end, a vote to disaffiliate will allow Buncombe Street to remain:|
|-A church that believes that Jesus is the true Son of God, was crucified on a cross, was dead and buried, and rose from the dead on the third day. |
-A church that believes Jesus is the light, the truth and the only way to eternal life.
-A church that believes in the words of the Apostle’s Creed.
-A church that believes that the scriptures are the inspired word of God.
-A church where ALL are welcomed to join as we seek God’s forgiveness and His grace through our savior, Jesus Christ.
What Will Be
|We believe that Buncombe Street will be blessed by leaving the UMC. After separation we envision that Buncombe Street will be:|
|-A church whose direction and mission are not determined by the UMC, but are determined by God and discerned and executed by the clergy and laity of Buncombe Street. |
-A church that is sheltered from the imposition of a progressive theology that is counter to the beliefs of the majority of the congregation.
-A church that remains focused on God and not on social and political issues.
-A church significantly less encumbered by bureaucracy.
-A church that has control over the appointments and the tenure of our clergy.
-A church that is not financially encumbered by more than $400,000 in annual apportionment costs.
-A church that enjoys the freedom and flexibility of owning our church’s property.
-A church more unified in purpose and direction.
|We believe God has sent us on this journey to free Buncombe Street from the UMC so that we can maintain our proud Methodist heritage and continue to bring others to Christ. God has great plans for us that require affiliating with a Methodist denomination that remains steadfast in its traditional views of the Bible. |
We observe that many local, traditional churches including First Presbyterian Church, St. Paul’s Anglican Church, Downtown Presbyterian Church, and Grace Church are thriving, and we believe that God is leading us to a place that will enable us to thrive as well.
It is imperative for the future of Buncombe Street that we vote on October 30th to free our church from the UMC.