Inclusion

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden,
and I will give you rest. 
Matthew 11:28

We invite everyone to share fully in the worship services, life, ministry, and leadership of Briensburg United Methodist Church inclusive of age, race, nationality, gender, LGBTQ, theology, politics, and legal status.
Unanimous Church Council Inclusiveness Statement vote on July 15, 2018.

We join the Reconciling Ministries Network as a Reconciling Congregation.  We welcome people of all sexual orientations and gender identities to participate fully in the worship, life, ministry, membership, and leadership of Briensburg United Methodist Church.
Unanimous Single Governance Board vote on March 3, 2019.

Briensburg UMC hopes to amplify the message that even the smaller rural churches like ours do not stand alone in our resolute affirmation that God loves everyone.  To the UMC, we point out that God continues to demonstrate the reconciling work of Jesus on the cross by manifesting the gifts of the Holy Spirit in the ministries and relationships of LGBTQ Christians. To all LGBTQ Christians, we absolutely welcome and need your full participation and leadership in our congregations.
Unanimous Leadership Bible Study response to being included by the Reconciling Ministries Network as the 1,000th Reconciling Congregation on March 29, 2019.

 

Inclusiveness means openness, acceptance, and support that enables all persons to participate in the life of the Church, the community, and the world; therefore, inclusiveness denies every semblance of discrimination.
¶ 140, Book of Discipline

 

We invite everyone to participate fully in the worship services, life, ministry, membership, and leadership of our congregation is because that is how we all grow together in the love and knowledge and grace of God.

Inclusive of Age

“Youth who are professing members of the church have all rights and responsibilities of church membership except voting on matters prohibited by state law.” (Can youth be members of the church council?)

“Clearly an infant can do nothing to save himself or herself, but is totally dependent on God’s grace, as we all are — whatever our age.”
(What’s the difference between infant baptism and believer’s baptism?)

Inclusive of Race

“We recognize racism as sin.”
(Social Principles: The Social Community)

– Book of Resolutions: A Charter for Racial Justice Policies in an Interdependent Global Community

What the Church Says: Racism

– The General Commission on Religion and Race (GCORR) focuses on bringing about full and equal participation of the racial and ethnic constituencies in The United Methodist Church. The commission carries out its work through advocacy of the issues and by reviewing and monitoring the practices of the denomination.

Inclusive of Nationality

“We recognize, embrace, and affirm all persons, regardless of country of origin, as members of the family of God.”
(Social Principles: The Social Community)

Inclusive of Gender

Women and men are invited and encouraged to participate equally in the leadership of our local church and at every level of our denomination including service as teachers, preachers, pastors, officers, deacons, elders, superintendents, and bishops.

“We affirm women and men to be equal in every aspect of their common life. We therefore urge that every effort be made to eliminate sex-role stereotypes in activity and portrayal of family life and in all aspects of voluntary and compensatory participation in the Church and society.”
(Social Principles: The Social Community)

Why does The United Methodist Church ordain women?

Inclusive of LGBTQ

See also: LGBTQ+ Inclusiveness References

“Certain basic human rights and civil liberties are due all persons. We are committed to supporting those rights and liberties for all persons, regardless of sexual orientation.”
(Social Principles: The Social Community)

We are asking everyone connected with the ministries of Briensburg UMC including online, study groups, Scouting, active and inactive membership, and any other programs to please join the RMN as a “Reconciling United Methodist” and notify us by text, phone call, or email to worship@briensburg.org when you have done so.  Cards are also available in the church vestibule.

 

“We join the Reconciling Ministries Network as a Reconciling Congregation.  We welcome people of all sexual orientations and gender identities to participate fully in the worship, life, ministry, membership, and leadership of Briensburg United Methodist Church.”  Unanimous Single Governance Board vote on March 3, 2019.

Inclusive of Theology

“Theology is thinking together about our faith and discipleship. It’s reflecting with others in the Christian community about the good news of God’s love in Christ.  …  In John Wesley’s balanced and rigorous ways for thinking through Christian doctrine, we find four major sources or criteria, each interrelated. These we often call our ‘theological guidelines’: Scripture, tradition, experience, and reason.”
(Theological Guidelines)

Inclusive of Politics

I met those of our society who had votes in the ensuing election,
and advised them
1. To vote, without fee or reward, for the person they judged most worthy
2. To speak no evil of the person they voted against, and
3. To take care their spirits were not sharpened against those
that voted on the other side.”
(The Journal of John Wesley, October 6, 1774)

– Social Principles: The Political Community

Inclusive of Legal Status

Restorative Justice

“In the love of Christ, who came to save those who are lost and vulnerable, we urge the creation of a genuinely new system for the care and restoration of victims, offenders, criminal justice officials, and the community as a whole. Restorative justice grows out of biblical authority, which emphasizes a right relationship with God, self, and community. When such relationships are violated or broken through crime, opportunities are created to make things right.”  (Social Principles: The Political Community)

Immigration

“Regardless of legal status or nationality, we are all connected through Christ to one another. ”
(Book of Resolutions: Welcoming the Migrant to the U.S.)

“Do not oppress a foreigner”
Our bishop, Bishop Bill McAlilly, has posted the article, “Do not oppress a foreigner,” a guest post by Morgan Stafford, Cross-Cultural Strategist and Ministry Intern for the Nashville Episcopal Area.


 

 

 

Other Resources

What Does It Mean to Be United Methodist?

Book of Discipline: Section 6: Called to Inclusiveness

Social Principles: The Social Community

General Conference Commission on Religion and Race

– By Water and the Spirit: A United Methodist Understanding of Baptism

– Book of Resolutions: Every Barrier Down: Toward Full Embrace of All Women in Church and Society

Briensburg UMC Emphasizes Inclusivity

 

The term [Inclusiveness] in United Methodism that means that every level of the denomination is to be open to all people in all settings on a fully equal basis. There is to be no distinction made because of racial or ethnic background, national origin, gender, age, handicapping condition, or any other criteria. It is the policy of The United Methodist Church to be fully inclusive of all persons in their participation in the life and work of the church. (A Dictionary for United Methodists)

 

 

We hope you will join us as we continue to live into our United Methodist motto,

Open hearts, open minds, open doors.