Recently Read: Bishop Palmer discusses future of the UMC

Palmer Preaching

Bishop Gregory Palmer of the Ohio West Episcopal Area recently gave an extensive interview to the Columbus Dispatch talking about his perceptions of the General Conference, the David Meredith wedding, and the future of the UMC:

Q: Is a schism inevitable?

A: I don’t think it’s inevitable. We’ve been able to keep more churches in than not. How possible that will continue to be in West Ohio and in our denomination, particularly in the United States, I think that the proverbial jury is out. I think there is both hope, some air and light into the room, and there is some elevated anxiety.

Palmer was selected to offer the Episcopal Address to the 2016 General Conference in Portland.

Click here to read the full interview, including a video interview with Bishop Palmer.

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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6 Comments on "Recently Read: Bishop Palmer discusses future of the UMC"

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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Wes Andrews

I read the interview, and it clearly appears this Bishop isn’t really interested in upholding the BOD and isn’t really interested in what Scripture says about sexuality. He is wishy washy. He needs to step down, but of course he won’t. All the more reason to allow the pastors and churches that don’t agree with our BOD or Scripture to freely leave the denomination.


Wes Andrews

jimmie shelby

One wonders if there is even 1–one–single bishop that is firmly planted on the conservative side of the umc. Is the entire council so effected by the station they hold–the salary they are paid–the trappings and trimmings that are theirs–the accolades they receive–that the Good News is but a shadow. What a sad day for the umc.

Thanks Phil and Wes for your great comments.

Wes Andrews
I really think the folks at Jurisdictional Conferences should really pay attention to the Candidates for Bishop. Our current Council doesn’t agree with our BOD, won’t vigorously uphold it (Bishop Palmer being a perfect example of this), and therefore, fail at leading. We should require clergy every year to restate their vows to uphold the doctrine and we should challenge any who cannot uphold our doctrine to honor it or leave with our blessing… If they want to make the change, then continue to honor it and work with the very fair due process that is found at General Conference.… Read more »

I now know to view Bishops as politicians. It seems like they answer questions, but they really don’t.


Let me see if I can summarize Bishop Palmer’s statement.
The restrictions on gay marriage should not be there. If a clergy member violates the rules he will find a way to keep that person in ministry. Do not force him to make hard decisions. We should all just get along.

I read the bishop’s interview. What an example of wishy-washy talk that means nothing. Plainly, this bishop has no problem with UMC ministers being sexually active homosexuals and no problem with UMC ministers performing same-sex marriages. I vote with “Local Pastor” above — faithful UMC churches should stop paying conference apportionments when their conference — and bishop — refuse to uphold the Discipline. The UMC is in a said state. Until those who follow Biblical teachings are free of being yoked with those who won’t follow Biblical teachings, the UMC will simply linger along as a modern day church of… Read more »
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