APPROVED CONNEXIONAL STATEMENT ON: HOMOSEXUALITY
The Methodist Church in the Caribbean and the Americas (MCCA), with other Christian denominations acknowledge that human sexuality is a God’s gift for intimacy and procreation. We affirm that in the marriage bond, intimacy and procreation find their highest fulfilment. a deviation from Christian principles (Romans 1: 26-27), and is neither condoned nor accepted by the MCCA.
The MCCA affirms the claims of equality between the sexes, freedom of choice, and the protection of the right of persons to express their identity. The MCCA declares that homosexuality can never be a viable alternative for human relationships without perverting the divine intention for male and female relationships (Genesis 1 – 3). Based on God’s intention for the created order (Genesis 1: 27-28), homosexuality is a deviation, and its influence is disruptive to the cohesiveness of the family unit, which is the cornerstone of life in society.
The MCCA recognises that homosexuality is a contentious issue which raises other contentious issues as to whether it is a condition of birth, or a learned behaviour; and that there is a necessity for continuing medical, psychological and sociological research on this issue.
Furthermore, the MCCA also respects the rights of every individual to live a life free of discrimination and therefore condemns intolerance, homophobic violence and exclusionary practices against persons of a different sexual orientation.
The MCCA upholds that all persons can enter into reconciling and transforming relationships with God and others through Jesus Christ, and participate in the life of the Church Community (2 Corinthians 5: 17 -19). The MCCA therefore commits itself to ministering to all areas of human brokenness by offering pastoral care and counselling and establishing through teaching the Biblical and theological precepts.
1. The study of human sexuality, in all its forms and expressions shall be given high priority in the curriculum for the Ministry of the Church; seminars for clergy and lay leadership on human sexuality and, in particular homosexuality, shall be carefully planned and conducted in all our Districts. The assistance of professionals and experts in the field should be obtained.
2. All aspects of human sexuality should be a part of the Church’s teaching and must be conducted under the guidance of a Presbyter or Deacon.
3. Same-sex contractual covenants shall neither be solemnised nor blessed on Methodist Properties. Ministers, Probationers and Marriage Officers who are members of the Methodist Church shall neither solemnise nor bless same sex covenants.
Source: Jamaica Methodist District Conference Minutes, Appendix 2 CAP B 2015