Panel: Racial and sexual parity linked

November 05, 2020 | by Jim Patterson

Panel: Racial and sexual parity linked

Real progress on racial issues in The United Methodist Church is impossible unless LGBTQ people are accepted as full participants in every aspect of the denomination, said both panelists during a sometimes emotional online discussion.

“You can’t begin to have a conversation about anti-racist work as long as there is this conversation about splitting the church over sexuality issues,” said Miguel A. De La Torre, professor of social ethics at Iliff School of Theology, during the Oct. 28 discussion. “If our queer brothers and sisters are not part of the liberationist movement, we cannot have any type of church that’s anti-racist.”

United Methodists have been torn over human sexuality issues for decades and are moving toward a spilt because of it. That possibility has been forestalled because the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the denomination’s General Conference meeting to be delayed until late summer of 2021.

The series of online forums about dismantling racism is being presented by the United Methodist Commission on Religion and Race, in partnership with the Council of Bishops, United Methodist Women, the United Methodist Board of Church and Society and United Methodist Communications.

Previous events have focused on topics including voter suppression and the roots of racism and colonialism. The latest episode was centered on intersectionality, or the ways in which systems of power operate in multiple ways at the same time.

Click here to read more and watch the panel discussion.


Patterson is a UM News reporter in Nashville, Tennessee. Contact him at 615-742-5470 or newsdesk@umcom.org. To read more United Methodist news, subscribe to the free Daily or Weekly Digests.
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