WHAT & WHO is “Methodist Laity of Mississippi”?
We are a group of Methodist Laity:
• We are from various and different churches within The Mississippi United Methodist Conference.
• We are dedicated active members in our local churches.
• We are the person sitting on your pew or, right next to you.
• We are your family and friends.
• We are your brothers and sisters in Christ.
• We are your Sunday School Teachers.
• We are members and leaders of the various boards and committees within your local church.
• We serve on statewide boards and are delegates to both Annual and General Conference.
• Many of us have relatives who are, or were, in the ministry.
• Some of us have a strong Methodist Heritage, which goes back generations, while others are new members.
• We ALL believe The Bible is THE foundation on which to build our lives.
WHY was “Methodist Laity of Mississippi” formed?
For several years, we have been aware of changing stances, on social and political issues, within the United Methodist Church’s leadership.
• We had begun educating ourselves as to how the Boards and Agencies, of the larger church, are funded and how they receive and spend our offerings.
• There was an event that happened at the 2009 Annual Conference worship service that contradicts clear Biblical teaching.
• Although the United Methodist Church has had troubling events throughout the denomination, it was now up close and personal.
• The Bishop conducted four meetings statewide in an attempt to resolve the issue brewing within The Conference.
• During a meeting at Parkway Heights UMC in Hattiesburg we witnessed a majority of Laity and Clergy speaking in support of the Authority of Scripture.
• A minority of the speakers defended the worship service at Annual Conference mainly on social issues.
• The Bishop was gracious and allowed everyone a chance to speak, but gave no response to questions directed to her.
• As the meeting adjourned we came to a realization that: there are Clergy that do not believe the inerrant Word of God.
• We knew we must take a stand and act upon it. We are “Called” to do so!
• Mississippi Fellowship of United Methodist Evangelicals, a Clergy led organization, conducted statewide meetings for Clergy and Laity.
• Several of our members attended the meeting in Brandon, while others attended the meeting in Pascagoula.
• There were laity from various areas of the state who, though strangers at the time, found many common areas of concern about the future of our church.
• Along the way we discovered there are some very “different” views of The Scripture.
• We also learned that our offerings sent to the UMC National Headquarters by way of apportionments are not being spent in ways in which we agree.
“The Wesleyan revival in eighteenth-century England was in great part John Wesley’s inspired attempt to reform the established Church of England through a reformation of the Laity. Wesley knew enough about the theological and practical implications of the doctrine of the church to know that the Laity are the Church. Any revitalization of the church must proceed from the bottom up. Wesley knew enough about church history to know that any time the church becomes dominated by the self-interest and aspirations of the clergy, the church declines.” ~ Taken from “Rekindling the Flame – Strategies for a Vital United Methodism”
HOW did “Methodist Laity of Mississippi” form?
A small, dedicated group gathered to pray that God would:
• Lead and direct our paths in His service
• Restore the United Methodist Church.
After several prayer meetings asking for God’s guidance, the decision was made to form “Methodist Laity of Mississippi”.
WHAT are the Goals of “Methodist Laity of Mississippi”?
Our ultimate goal:
• When facing our Lord on Judgment Day we will know that while on our watch, we did NOT allow our Church to become guilty of apostasy.
Our immediate goal is to educate our Laity on:
• The great spiritual truths of our Church and its Doctrine.
• How our Church is to function organizationally.
• How the Churches finances are to be used at all levels.
• How can we hold OUR Church accountable for being good Stewards.
• How we can assist our local Churches with re-alignment in true Wesleyan traditions.
HOW does “Methodist Laity of MS” plan on achieving their goals?
• Education - of the Laity of the Mississippi Conference.
• Prayer – pray that our UMC will once again become a strong influence for saving souls and transforming this nation’s social culture.
• Information - keep the Laity informed of the recommended educational resources.
• Speakers - Contact us if you desire a speaker at your church or group.
• Join us! Become active and informed in our movement!
I’M INTERESTED, but what can I do?
• Pray - for your local Church and its leaders.
• Pray - for our Conference and its leaders.
• Pray - for our Methodist brothers and sisters in other lands who are enduring persecution for their faith.
• We urge your church to order several copies of “The Book of Discipline” from Cokesbury, an official Methodist Publishing Co. (Educational Resources)
• ENCOURAGE your Church Council to order the suggested “Guidelines” for each committee/board. Cokesbury has condensed “committee booklets” named “Guidelines”. They clarify the function of each committee & board and are “Discipline” compliant. These booklets will educate board/committee members as to what their duties are. (Educational Resources)
• Become INFORMED by visiting the recommended websites.
• Read some of the recommended books on our “Educational Resources” page, so that you can begin to understand what the challenges facing our Church and Christianity are.
• Our Church is fragmented. We have become involved in so many programs, have formed so many alliances with a variety of religious and secular groups, and have championed so many contradictory causes that we no longer know what is our unique task. To recover the real purpose of the Church will not be easy because many of the activities in which we have been involved are socially useful, if not necessarily Christian, and all have their champions within our bureaucracy.
• REQUEST each Sunday School Class in the Children’s Department to study the Methodist Catechism (Available March 1). In a very simple format of questions and answers it teaches Basic Christian beliefs, from a protestant point of view, but on a child’s level. Order directly from the printer. (Educational Resources)
• Verify - that your children, and youth, are being taught the values and beliefs of Christianity.
• SUGGEST – that your Local Church offer courses in historic Methodism and the Wesleyan spirit. Our recommendations will soon follow.
• This is important for all church members because - it cannot be assumed that even people who have grown up in our Church have an adequate knowledge of their heritage.
“Give me one hundred men who fear nothing but sin and desire nothing but God, and I care not whether they be clergymen or laymen, they alone will shake the gates of hell and set up the kingdom of Heaven upon the earth.”
WHERE is “Methodist Laity of Mississippi” based?
Send Us Mail:
Methodist Laity of Mississippi
P. O. Box 15415
Hattiesburg, MS 39404
E-mail Us: firstname.lastname@example.org