God in love unites us -- Marriage and Relationships 2019
Relationships, sex and marriage are important issues for everyone. To speak on these topics is both a challenge and an opportunity. As part of its calling and mission, the Methodist Church must engage with the reality of how people are living today. Looking at these relationships raises questions about the nature of marriage, cohabitation, living in relationships and living with different sexualities. These questions cut right to the very identity of who we are, and who those we love are and can be.
The Methodist Church has not fully reflected on the theology of marriage and relationships since 1992 although work has been carried out by several Task Groups since then. The Marriage and Relationships Task Group set up in 2014 identified the need for an update and to revisit the 'definition' of marriage and the current Task Group (set up in 2016) have been looking at this. The 2018 Conference directed that, instead of a statement, the Task Group should bring a report on these matters which could include any proposed changes to Standing Orders, were the definition of marriage to change.
The Marriage and Relationships Task Group will present a report to the 2019 Conference with recommendations about various issues to do with relationships in general and marriage in particular. If accepted by Conference, those recommendations will be submitted to the wider Church for consultation during 2019-2020, with a final decision being made at the July 2020 Conference.
The group looked at how we can best live faithfully as Christians in these relationships today. As Methodist people, we differ in how we answer this question. Yet, we are called to be in loving communion with one another. What we share in loving God and in knowing we are loved by God, is much greater than anything that divides us.
Please click on the pdf icon to access the report