Open Letter to the Pastors and Churches of the
of The United Methodist Church
Concerning Glide Memorial United Methodist Church
The California-Nevada Conference of The United Methodist Church has a long-standing commitment of support for Glide Memorial United Methodist Church’s work with the poor and vulnerable of the Tenderloin District and the greater San Francisco community. The Conference’s commitment of support for this work stands today. The concerns that I and the leadership of the California-Nevada Conference have are related to the church life of this congregation.
While there is a remnant of those who claim to be United Methodist and thus Christian, the great majority of the participants at Glide’s Sunday Celebrations claim other faiths such as Jewish, Buddhist, Muslim and Wiccan. Atheists and Agnostics, comprise another segment of the Glide community. Leaders from these constituencies are quick to publicly state that they do not want the Celebrations, or the church, to be United Methodist or Christian in any form. Sunday Celebrations are uplifting concerts, but lack the fundamentals of Christian worship. Baptisms are conducted periodically but in the name of the people rather than from a Christian understanding of Baptism. Holy Communion was done away with some time ago and only introduced back into the life of the congregation this past Spring, but outside of the Celebration gatherings and with much resistance. We seek to be in good and loving relationship with persons of other faiths and beliefs, and those who claim no faith. However, this should never cause us to lose our own faith.