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pressreleaseFrom time to time Kinship responds to issues affecting LGBTIQ Adventists. We believe that our voices should matter on issues affecting us.

Seventh-day Adventist Kinship welcomes the opportunity to share our perspective on issues affecting the LGBTIQ community, specifically related to the intersectionality between it and the Seventh-day Adventist community.

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ABOUT THE SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST CHURCH

The Seventh-day Adventist Church is a Protestant Christian denomination distinguished by its observance of Saturday, the seventh day of the week in Christian and Jewish calendars, as Sabbath (a day of rest), and by its emphasis on the imminent Second Coming (advent) of Jesus Christ.

The denomination grew out of the Millerite movement in the United States during the mid-19th century and was formally established in 1863. Among its founders was Ellen G. White, whose extensive writings are still held in high regard by the church.

Much of the theology of the Seventh-day Adventist Church corresponds to common Protestant Christian teachings, such as the Trinity and the infallibility of Scripture. The church is known for its emphasis on diet and health, "wholistic" understanding of the person, promotion of religious liberty, and conservative principles and lifestyle.

The world church is governed by a General Conference, with smaller regions administered by divisions, union conferences, and local conferences. It currently has a worldwide baptized membership of about 19.1 million people. It is ethnically and culturally diverse and maintains a missionary presence in over 200 countries and territories.

PRESS RELEASE ARCHIVES

 
FEBRUARY 2019 — RE: We understand. We share your frustration.

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On Tuesday, February 26, 2019, the United Methodist Church (UMC) voted in a special session of the General Conference (their top legislative body) to adopt the “Traditional Plan” which sought to strengthen enforcement of the denomination’s homosexuality prohibitions. It was passed by a vote of 438-384.  

This special session of the UMC, the second largest protestant denomination in the United States, was the resut of a 2018 report of a commission established by the Council of Bishops (COB) to review their Book of Discipline, a fundamental book that outlines the denomination's law, doctrine, and procedures.  

The result of that commission, endorsed by the COB, was called the “One Church Plan” which would have allowed accommodations for same-sex marriage and LGBTIQ clergy. Currently, only celibate LGBTIQ members are permitted to be ordained. 

Seventh-day Adventist Kinship International, an advocacy community for LGBTIQ individuals with a Seventh-day Adventist connection, has been paying close attention to proceedings of the UMC session. 

Our denominations share many similarities, including the presence of influential conservative groups that strongly oppose affirmation, opportunities, and treatment. This was reflected in the session that featured impassioned and emotionally charged speeches from both sides. 

We want to highlight the words of Rev. Byron Thomas who compared the issue to the church's earlier handling of racial segregation within the denomination. Thomas, in his impassioned speech, quoted the late Bishop Thomas of North Carolina: “In 1939 the UMC was trying to figure out what to do with black people. At that GC…the white folk stood up and clapped and the black folk sat down and cried.” This is another stand-up-and-clap, sit-down-and-cry moment, according to Rev. Thomas. We agree.

Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Let us realize the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” On this day, the 27th day of African-American History Month, we sit down and cry in solidarity with our LGBTIQ friends and allies in the United Methodist Church. Tomorrow, we stand up and continue our work in solidarity and unison to move that arc towards justice for LGBTIQ Christians. 

Justice will come.