As The United Methodist Church approaches a major legislative gathering that will determine the future of the denomination, Bishop Christian Alsted of the Nordic and Baltic Episcopal Area tells his members that the only way to maintain relationships in the church is to continue talking to one another — even if they strongly disagree.
Alsted spoke with UM News as part of a video series featuring different perspectives of church leaders on the work of the Commission on a Way Forward.
‘It’s important for us to stay in dialogue.’
As United Methodists head into the 2019 special General Conference, Bishop Christian Alsted says it's important to remember others may have genuine faith even when we disagree with them.
Bishop urges congregants to face challenges together
There are concerns that the outcome of the 2019 special General Conference will be a split within the denomination. Bishop Christian Alsted maintains that Methodist churches have been together for hundreds of years, and one disagreement is not worth separating over.
‘I trust the General Conference’
The 2019 special General Conference will consider a number of plans regarding the future direction of The United Methodist Church. Bishop Christian Alsted said he isn’t publicly supporting a particular plan because he trusts that General Conference delegates will make the best decision for the church.
‘God’s mission is yet alive.’
Bishop Christian Alsted feels that no matter what the 2019 special General Conference decides about the future of the denomination, the church will continue to carry out God’s mission.