September 12, 2013
Bishop Mark Webb
324 University Ave. 3rd Floor
Syracuse, NY 13210
Dear Bishop Webb,
I am a fourth generation, life-long Methodist, having been baptized in Centenary United Methodist Church in 1937, and confirmed in 1949. In 1995 Centenary United Methodist Church, the mother church of Methodism in Binghamton, closed its doors and joined with sisters and brothers at Chenango Street United Methodist Church, a reconciling congregation.
I have, therefore, developed friendships with gay and lesbian couples, some of which have been blessed to be legally married and raising beautiful children.
Although I was unable to attend ChurchQuake in Chevy Chase Maryland, I have attended three other Reconciling Convocations. My many associations, near and far, have not harmed me or my family in any way. In fact these relationships have enriched my life.
Bishop Webb, I do understand your position requires that you uphold the Discipline of the United Methodist Church. However, I believe the portions of the Discipline dealing with homosexuality are wrong and need to be changed.
The church wants the world to believe “Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors”.
Where is the truth in that?
I commend The Rev. Stephen Heiss for his truthfulness and his commitment to gay and lesbians and I admire his courage. At the same time, I am concerned because the church has needlessly lost so many good, talented, committed people over this issue.
I don’t know the solution, but this needs to stop!
Thank you for your consideration.