Recently Read: Maxie Dunnam takes on Bishop Carcaño|

MaxieDunnam_300The Rev. Maxie Dunnam has been around the UMC for a long time, having served as a pastor, a UM agency employee, and that Dean of Asbury Theological Seminary. He was also a pastor in Mississippi during the battle over civil rights in the South, and thus has an interesting response to Bishop Minerva Carcaño’s comparison to her offering Frank Schaefer an appointment with that of Bishop Gerald Kennedy, who invited clergy under attack for supporting racial equality to move to California:

The differences seem clear. None of the 28 who signed the Born of Conviction statement were charged with violating the Discipline of our Church. In fact, in light of Bishop Carcaño’s comparison, it is somewhat ironic that we were trying desperately to support the Discipline, not disregard it. The witness against racism in our Discipline was as clear then as the Church’s present witness against same sex marriage and the ordination of professed practicing homosexual persons. We Mississippi 28 were not violating the covenant of our ordination; we were upholding it.

via Maxie Dunnam ~ In Honor of Bishop Gerald Kennedy |.

Click on the link above to read Maxie’s story and his perspective on Carcaño’s statement.

Recently Read

Recently Read

Recently Read posts are stories the editors of The United Methodist Reporter have found interesting from other sites and wanted to share with our readers. The editors do not necessarily endorse the opinions shared in these stories, and referral here should not imply endorsement of that content.

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13 Comments on "Recently Read: Maxie Dunnam takes on Bishop Carcaño|"

The United Methodist Reporter wants to encourage lively conversation about The United Methodist Church and our articles in the belief that Christian conversation (what Wesley would call conferencing) is a means of grace. While we support passionate debate, we cannot allow language that demeans or demonizes others, and we reserve the right to delete any comment we believe to be harmful or inappropriate. We encourage all to remember that we are all broken and in need of Christ's grace, and that we all see through the glass darkly until that time we when reach full perfection in love. May your speech here be tempered with love, and reflection of the fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. After all, "There is no law against things like this." (Galatians 5:22-23)
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Rev. Paul Dreher-Wiberg, retired UMC
About the only thing Maxie Dunnam has said lately with which I can agree is that it is time to talk about dissolving the United Methodist, and creating two new denominations, so that we can all put this unGodly four decade old civil war to rest, and each pursue our ministries as we believe the Spirit calls us to do. I am long past tired of the Book of Discipline being used as a hateful weapon against those who will not submit to the tyranny of the conservative majority. The UMC has become a travesty of the Gospel of love… Read more »
Winfried Ritter
To Maxie Dunnam: (1) Whatever the qualifications or needs of the recipients, the generous hospitality of the Los Angeles area bishops and their conference has remained the same. There are no two ways about it. (2) Read the story of Judah and Tamar in Gen. 38 to discover that there are situations when the moral code (or Book of Discipline) has to be disobeyed in order to fulfill the righteousness (Zedakah) that is an obligation within the covenant of family and community. (God’s righteousness is nothing else but his faithfulness to the covenant between God and Israel, and in Jesus… Read more »
Tom Griffith
Maxie, my old friend of now pushing half a century (how did we get that old?), you are right that the Mississippi 28 were trying to uphold the Discipline against the sin of racism. I fully believe that. However, in being right, I believe you are also being wrong. The 5 verses in the entire Bible that may even obliquely refer to homosexuality (Report to the 1992 General Conference on Homosexuality) are all unquestionably negative. When a) the vast majority of people from the JE days of Leviticus through the third century C.E. were, as we are now, “straight.” For… Read more »
Wes Andrews
It’s sad, that the transcendent unchanging truth of Scripture doesn’t matter to some people who identify themselves as Christians. If we prefer that the truth of Scripture is transient, then a whole world of possibilities are available to us! Tom, we don’t hate heterosexual couples who live together, yet we believe that sexual experience and celebration is best shared within marriage between a man and a woman, made one by God. We don’t hate men to lust over women through watching pornography, yet, we understand from Jesus and the witness of the Old and New Testament that God prefers that… Read more »
Wes, I was going to respond to Tom, but I don’t think I could have done better than you. Once we engage in mental gymnastics to reimagine and redefine what has been pretty clear up to this point then the sky is the limit. Why monogamy? Why not anything as long as the people involved are consenting adults of legal age? Tom suggests that those of us who accept historic Christian teachings (and what appear to be the clear mandates of biology and natural law) are somehow singling out homosexual behavior for special condemnation, but, in reality, we are being… Read more »
Wes Andrews
It’s pretty pathetic, Thomas, to attack Maxie Dunnam and use a narrow bigoted label of him as “being a white male…” The only label that fits Maxie Dunnam is as a devoted Jesus follower who has effectively proclaimed the Gospel, who has helped many come to a deeper place in their faith, and who has also fought the battle of justice. It is distasteful for anyone to attack others, to marginalize a person’s race, or sexuality, or theology. It is distasteful to call people names like liar, homophobe, heterosexist. It is certainly distasteful when conservatives do it, and it is… Read more »

with age comes wisdom, but not in this case.

Jon Altman

I’m going to believe Coretta Scott King, John Lewis and Andrew Young over Maxie Dunnam over whether the struggle for racial equality and LGBT equality are the same.


FYI, just for accuracy, Dunnam was “President” of Asbury, not just the dean. For what it’s worth.

Thomas Coates

ecclesiastical disobedience? civil disobedience… both can be just — Martin Luther and John Wesley would certainly agree. Dunnam forgets his privilege of being a white male and forgets that there are LGBTQ African-Americans within the UMC, and allies as well (such as Bishop Talbert). Both are issues of justice, overlapping and intersecting, if also different. Both involve basic, civil rights for large groups of people.

DL Herring
@Thomas Coates – Martin Luther and John Wesley would agree that “homosexual practice is inconsistent with Christian teaching”. This is not a civil rights issue, it’s a moral issue, a Biblical imperative to turn away from sexual immorality. You are forgetting that his “white privilege” gave him unfettered access to the poor and downtrodden during a very dangerous time in Mississippi; white pastors such as Rev Dunnam were crucial to the successes of the early civil rights movement with the Rev Dr King. Permitting and advocating sin is not “justice”; the Bible is clear that there is good and evil… Read more »

MLK’s best friend was a gay man, Baynard Rustin, who organized most of MLK’s work including the march on Washington.

We have no idea what JW would do.


I suppose if John Wesley himself spoke from the grave, with a message the progressives didn’t like, they’d cry WHITE MALE PRIVILEGE! What nonsense.

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