Where’s the Money in the split of the United Methodist Church?

Tom Lambrecht at Good News wrote probably the best article I’ve read on the money trail in the United Methodist Church ahead of the May 2020 split of the denomination. The newly proposed Protocol for Reconciliation and Grace Through Separation left many on both sides of the gay clergy and same sex marriage issue wondering if they would get their fair share of money from the UMC.

The United Methodist Church has assets over 1 billion dollars, but the recently proposed plan would have traditionalist walk away with only 25 million over 4 years. The reality is over a half of billion of the UMC’s assets are debts owed to others. So after you break it all down, 25 million isn’t such a bad deal for traditionalist.

My only concern is that the 25 million is spread out over 4 years instead of a lump sum payout. As the article details, the financial picture for progressives who will keep the UMC name and all of its debt is not a bright one. I fear that over the four year payout out period, the money could dry up before traditionalist ever see all of it.

In my estimation the Wesleyan Covenant Association which represents traditionalist, needs to go back to the table and insist on a one time payment of 25 million in a lump sum. At the end of the day this is not about greed or gluttony, this is about seed money for a new denomination that is focused on making disciples of Jesus Christ.

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