Regional Body of Mennonite Church USA May Cut Ties With Denomination Over LGBT Issues

A regional body of Mennonite Church USA has entered into a period of discernment over possibly leaving the denomination in part over LGBT issues. 

The South Central Mennonite Conference opted to begin a process, known as “Discovery 20.21,” which began after the regional body held its July 25-26 online annual assembly.

In an overview of the process provided to congregations, South Central leadership explained that the third part of the three-year discernment came over LGBT issues.

“We are in a time of moral discernment, theological realignments and changing affiliations in Mennonite Church USA, with the result that MC USA has significantly changed in its composition of churches and its theological orientation,” explained the overview, as reported by Mennonite World Review on Wednesday.

“The advocacy for the sanctification of same-sex relations in Mennonite Church USA, some pastors conducting same-sex covenant services with the approval of their area conferences and a few pastors living in same-sex relationships has brought us to a tipping point.”

Howard Wagler, a former pastor and conference leader who will chair the Discovery Process, told MWR that it was not just the ideological direction of the church body that fueled the process.

“The pull of culture toward a progressive side of a continuum has been part of, but not all of, why we are doing this,” explained Wagler.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Michael Gryboski