United Methodism: It's Time to Multiply
October 6 2022
Dr. Jeff Greenway and Bishop Mike Lowry share their insights about an exciting time in the life of the Methodist movement. Those serving in the UMC have a short window to participate in the disaffiliation process. Greenway and Lowry discuss ideas surrounding this critical moment in the life of the UMC. Other denominations can learn lessons from them during this time.
Check out their book on this subject at - https://www.amazon.com/Multiplying-Methodism-Witness-Wesleyan-Methodist/dp/1737911256
Youtube - https://youtu.be/C4mreF6-9qs
Contender: Going Deeper in the Book of Jude - This all-inclusive small group study on the book of Jude is out now. Check it out on the course page: http://courses.andymilleriii.com
Five Steps to Deeper Teaching and Preaching - I’m excited to share some news with you. Recently, I updated this PDF document and added a 45-minute teaching video with slides, explaining this tool. It's like a mini-course. If you sign up for my list, I will send this free resource to you. Sign up here - www.AndyMillerIII.com or Five Steps to Deeper Teaching and Preaching.
Today’s episode is brought to you by these two sponsors:
Keith Waters and his team at WPO Development do an amazing job helping non-profits and churches through mission planning studies, strategic plans, feasibility studies, and capital campaigns. We are honored to have Keith and WPO on the More to the Story team. You can find out more about them at www.wpodevelopment.com or touch base directly with Keith at Keith.Waters@wpodevelopment.com.
Wesley Biblical Seminary - Interested in going deeper in your faith? Check out our certificate programs, B.A., M.A.s, M.Div., and D.Min degrees. You will study with world-class faculty and the most racially diverse student body in the country. www.wbs.edu
Thanks too to Phil Laeger for the new podcast music. You can find out about Phil's music at https://www.laeger.net
Welcome to the more to the story. Podcast. I'm: so glad you have come along. And one of the things that has happened as a result of the various pieces that we've put out lately is that people are very interested in what is happening with the emergence of the Global Methodist Church, and we have another conversation today that I think would be incredibly helpful to you with new leaders within that movement with a new book that's come out. But before we get there. I want to make sure. You know that this podcast is brought to you by West,
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Andy Miller III: the Biblical Seminary, where we are developing trusted leaders for faithful churches, and particularly as we're thinking about the context of this conversation. There are faithful churches all around the country, and we at West University are doing all that we can to ensure. There are bachelors, masters, doctoral students, who are making their way through a process where they are being trained in the faith once for all delivered to the saints, that they will be trusted leaders to go to these faithful churches that are serving,
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Andy Miller III: and they'll be ready to serve in those churches. So we're excited to make sure. You know about Wesley Biblical Seminary, a seminary that is regularly training people in the Evangelical Wesleyan tradition, you can check us out at Wbs Edu. Secondly, we are brought to you by Wpo. Development and Keith Waters as Ceo of that group, and they've done more than two hundred and fifty capital campaigns, feasibility studies, and strategic plans for nonprofits and churches all around the country.
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Andy Miller III: They help people develop a plan and know how to actualize that plan. So I recommend them to you. I've used them for two campaigns myself, so you can find out more about them at Wpo Development. And finally, the last thing I want to make sure you know about is that there is a new study that's come out from more to the story Ministries of the little book of June, these twenty five verses, where we have six videos for small groups. And what's been interesting is that This book, really, I think, is for this moment in the life of
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Andy Miller III: Church, as we are called, to content for the faith, once for all, the liberty of the saints, and there are several churches within the United Methodist tradition that are using this as they are going through a disaffiliation process. There are others, other churches, savish army churches, divisions that are using this. So you can find out more about this study called Contender at Andy Miller Iii dot Com. That's aiming on Iii. Okay. Now I'm excited to bring in my guest, and I have with me today
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Andy Miller III: Bishop Emeritus Mike Lowry and Dr. Jeff Greenway, who is the senior pastor at Reynoldsburg, United Methodist Church, and is prominently located in my office, because his signature is on my seminary degree. Ah, friends, welcome to Podcast. I'm so glad to have you both here.
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John Lowry: It's a delight to be with you.
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Jeff Greenway: It's great to see again, Andy glad to be here.
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Andy Miller III: It's really a treat for me to be with both of you, and particularly Jeff. You know. My God! There was this senior figure in my life as a going through the the seminary president when you graduate, is a significant figure, and I I I still have a few things, Jeff, that you would send out these nuggets to keep in mind as we enter Pastoral Ministry that I've kept close in my debt, I These were the days that have come out email, and I printed them just to keep them close by. So it's really an honor to be with you again.
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Jeff Greenway: Thanks, Andy. That means a lot to me.
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Andy Miller III: So you guys have a new book coming out, and we're going to get to that. But if you all could just highlight your roles in the emerging Methodism which I know, could take two hours in itself. But if you could give us a short version of that, that would help us kind of frame where we are, and then ah! In a few minutes we'll talk about your book. So Bishop Lowry, could you tell us? I mean, Obviously, i'm identifying you as Bishop? But how do you fit into this story?
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John Lowry: So I was a local church pastor for about thirty years. Ah, mostly in the Old Southwest. Well, all in the Old Southwest. Well, all but one little piece in the Old Southwest Texas Conference, which is now a part of the Rio Run Conference was elected the Desc. In two thousand and eight, and assigned to the Central Texas Conference, Fort Worth districtal area,
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John Lowry: where I served for thirteen and one over two years. In that tenure. I was on the Executive committee of the Council of Bishops from two hundred and twelve
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John Lowry: to two hundred and sixteen um served as the lead Bishop, along with Bishop James Swanson on the path. One initiative for new church development. I'd. Worked in that field previous upon retirement on January first of two thousand and twenty two.
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John Lowry: I was a retired bishop in the United Methodist Church, but I agreed to serve on the Transitional Leadership Council and the Executive Committee of the Council bishops made it very clear. I was no longer welcome
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John Lowry: in the United Methodist Church, or in the cons of bishops. I wrote a response to their letter to me, which got published in Firebrand.
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John Lowry: Ah, under crossing the Rubicon, so people can read it and firebrand the magazine if they want to go online to read it. Parts of that letter are also in our book at one game, and then may one. When the Global Methodist Church
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John Lowry: formally organized, I resigned my membership in the United Methodist Church's Council of Bishops, which is where Bishop's membership resides,
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John Lowry: and I was received into the into the Global Methodist church as a retired bishop with my credentials recognized. This is an important aside. But you, Don't, surrender your credentials. On leaving the Methodist Church they're recognized by the Global Methodist Church.
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John Lowry: Okay. So I I was ah received and and recognized as um as a ah Bishop Emeritus is the title for a retired Bishop of the Global Methodist Church on May one, And that's my honor of privilege.
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John Lowry: Along with Jeff. I serve now as a member of the Transitional Leadership Council.
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Andy Miller III: Wow! Well! And there's so much significance in some of the things you said. But as Bishop, you were kind of a part of this, the the facilitation of the discipline. So you know, all of these pieces have gone in place. Yet when when the
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Andy Miller III: global Methods Church emerged, you were the first bishop to stand up and be a part of it. So it's a remarkable thing.
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John Lowry: Yeah, I mean, as people know, I I I chaired a session of the General conference in in Portland in two thousand and sixteen. So
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John Lowry: yeah, I was in the middle of it. Now. There, there are others much more in the middle of it. I think Jeff's story frankly, is more interesting than mine. I was just a bishop trying to be faithful.
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John Lowry: Wow! You know I thought I took vows to God first and foremost. And I've said often
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John Lowry: that when a shovel dirt on my casket I want somebody standing by it, not to say Oh, he was a pastor. He was a bishop, or whatever, and like somebody standing by to say he was a submitted man. Wow! He gave his life to
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Andy Miller III: Okay, nine,
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Andy Miller III: Jeff. How do you fit into this this story of what's happening in Methodism?
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Jeff Greenway: Well, between the two of us we have seventy five years of experience at at just about every level of the church. Ah! Pastors district superintendent on my part. Seminary President. Ah, Board members of seminaries! Um, you know we I was a candidate, and you see, I think God delivered me by taking me to Asbury. When he did so I would I would be spared the heartache i'd be experiencing right now as a member of Council bishops.
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Jeff Greenway: But six years ago well, twelve years ago, after the two thousand and twelve general conference, I came home to my board,
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Jeff Greenway: and I told them that we something has shifted, and the civility that had existed, and the and the commitment of those who lead us and the Council of Bishops to abide by our common polity together is is unraveling,
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Jeff Greenway: and and I began to plan the seeds in our Church Board at that time that that we needed to be paying attention to this. Well, six years ago, in twenty and twenty, sixteen, after the before the general Conference. There were some provocative acts that happened here in West Ohio that I was involved in,
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Jeff Greenway: uh, in which I brought complaint against a clergy person which is still unresolved
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Jeff Greenway: six years later. This there's no questions about the matter of fact, it's just a question of a matter of well about whether we want to buy buyer quality, and in August of that year I was one of forty or fifty leaders that were invited to come to the woodlands in Texas to have a conversation around a formation, a group called the West Saint Covenant Association. Long story short. Out of that meeting we elected A. We began to elect and populate a council that was really charged with building. What I always called was an art
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Jeff Greenway: on which faithful, united methods could go and land as we, as the church began to splinter and come apart.
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Jeff Greenway: Um! I had the privilege of chairing the Council for the first four years. For four and a half years of this, this, this existence. Last year and a half I've been the vice chair, as Carolyn Moore has been the chair,
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Jeff Greenway: but in that process. I I shared the the committee, and which was uh developing the doctrine of disciplines which Uh has been, uh largely adopted by the transitional leadership Council of the Global Methodist Church, and about the two years ago I was invited to participate as one of the sixteen or seventeen members of the transitional Leadership Council.
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Jeff Greenway: So I've been. Ah, I've been. My fingerprints have been involved in Ah, both in the United Methods Church trying to work for us to write ourselves and be obedient to our historic standards, and renew ourselves to be an alignment with the big sea Church of Jesus at the same point. When I came to realize that that was no longer possible.
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Jeff Greenway: Yeah, it's no longer possible. I began to try to build a system that we could hold one another accountable in that would be move mental in nature and not hierarchical, institutional in nature, and try to reclaim some of the ah, the energy of our past. Ah! Into the future.
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Andy Miller III: Wonderful! Wow! And I I really admire the work that you all are doing, and I just look at my friends across the Methodist Church, and those who have been working really their whole ministries, and I even look to somebody like my um.
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Andy Miller III: My wife's grandfather, who is on attended General conferences. Billy Key, like, for you know, decades he participated in this and it's passed on to my in-laws who have done similar things, and and so I do that that's just like a small piece of what's going on. But the the reality of you all stepping into these positions and being able to create an or create an art where people can go is incredibly important, and and I see other things happening in other denominations within our tradition as well.
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Andy Miller III: So we we look to you as examples right? And then we appointed you like Don't. Let's not go down this same road. There are some of these anomalies like the one that I come from the Salvish Army might have a chance to take some steps to not go there. But unfortunately there's just movements similar to me and I met this church. Okay. One thing I want to. I want to start with, because I think some people will tune in for this, and there's There's some urgency to this moment, and we're recording this on September twenty second. This will like to come out sometime in October with
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Andy Miller III: There There are churches within the sphere of Wessex Biblical Seminary of Like the pastors who are training here, who maybe there's some who are just um lay members board members and say, Well, it's not such a big deal this isn't a time. Let's just see what happens. Let's see how it is a general conference in two thousand and twenty-four. It's uh let's just worry about being the local church. Let's not let's not think too much about this big picture stuff, after all. I've always been in I methods I don't want. It is. Maybe this is just somebody trying to agitate.
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Jeff Greenway: Well, let me just say I've been telling anybody who will listen. For six years I've been telling anybody who would listen for six years that that you need to be speaking about this in your local church
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Jeff Greenway: and and and to not do so is conflict avoidance, And it really is pastoral malpractice that said the reason there's an urgency. Now, the reason we wrote the book when we did and self-published it, rather than wait for another publisher to do It
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Jeff Greenway: is because the window to get out of the United Methods church closes at midnight on December the thirty first, two thousand and twenty three.
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Jeff Greenway: The provision, the only provision that the Council of Bishops is allowing people to use to leave is a paragraph that was added at the two thousand and nineteen special call General Conference. It was supposed to resolve forever on issues of homosexuality, and when it didn't go the way the Council of Bishops had perceived it should go
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Jeff Greenway: all of a sudden we're living in open rebellion, and nobody's listening to our by our agreed upon quality, except for when it comes to this particular matter, and that paragraph expires december the thirty, first two thousand and twenty-three.
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Jeff Greenway: I have no confidence that the General Conference in twenty twenty four will provide an exit ramp for faithful evangelical United Message Churches to be able to leave the denomination
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Jeff Greenway: no confidence. I was a part of I wasn't in the room to vote Adam Hamilton. I was outside of the room when the protocol was being negotiated, and united methods will be familiar with that language. But when the protocol of Ah, reconciliation and grace, your separation was being negotiated, we were pretty hopeful
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Jeff Greenway: that we be able to amicably separate. But you know
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Jeff Greenway: a global pandemic. Three delayed general conferences later.
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Jeff Greenway: The protocol has effectively been put into legislative oblivion, and it will never see the light of day
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Jeff Greenway: and the and the institution. Those those who are those who are charged with guarding and protecting the institution have are basically closing the circle and making it very difficult. And you know, and I get any institutions exist to protect themselves. And when an institution feels as if it's as if it's threatened. Those who are charged with protecting it will do just about anything, including violating their own ethos in order to protect that,
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Jeff Greenway: and so individuals can sacrifice. Losses are calculated. Ah, decisions are made, narratives are developed that you know that that counter the reason that the institution is threat. So I I think that in the two and a half years since the Protocol was approved
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Jeff Greenway: the institutionalist institutional preservation, Nature of the United States is kicked in, and they want to do everything that they can do to guard the assets that have been entrusted to them, rather than multiply the Church into different expressions. They want to. They want to start one and feed the other.
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Jeff Greenway: Wow! My opinion,
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Andy Miller III: this process, then, ah! Of trying to get get ahead of December Thirty first Bishop. All actually is is a something that's technical within this legislation. So tell us about what that is, and why why do people need to get out now, because it's not just like a a quick one. Vote piece right?
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John Lowry: Sure, it's a process. Um! And I think Ah! And I want to underline the kind of, if you will, warning that Jeff is saying the clock is ticking on this legislation, and and I think it is painfully true
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John Lowry: that the protocol is legislatively
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John Lowry: a dead issue. I'm. Just. I really think those who sit around and and I want to say this with some with some
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John Lowry: Angst. I am a bishop who, in the last year of my active Episcopacy in the United Methods Church in the Central Texas Conference, said to people, wait for the protocol. Just
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John Lowry: thank you.
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John Lowry: Be in prayer. Be in discussion, but wait for the protocol. Well, I think that day has passed so a couple of things that that take place in this, and and then, if I may, let me invite Jeff to add to this, because I think he has a bit of grasp on it than I do.
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John Lowry: But one is There's a process of discernment that needs to go on for a local congregation, so that when I travel around, I find many
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John Lowry: local churches have discovered that their pastors have not talked about this Jeff, alluding to that fact already, so that what we're facing is a lot of
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John Lowry: not just not not so much disinformation, but a lot of lack of information. People just don't know they haven't wrestled with it, and I think the phrase conflict. Avoidance is the right term for it, and I think trying to be conflict. Avoid
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John Lowry: in the middle of a church. Schism is one of the most dangerous, and I believe ultimately unfaithful things the
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John Lowry: one can do.
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John Lowry: Ah! And I I want to say that cautiously, because I I think the intent, I think the intent is is gracious. You know that they want to be kind, They, Calvin, and a phrase where he used to talk about a cruel mercy,
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John Lowry: and I think with pastors who are avoided as a pro mercy. Anyhow, let me go back to your question and and just nail it real quick. You've got to go through a process of discernment which takes a period of prayer, a period of study, a period of reflection typically in most conferences with your district Superintendent being advised, and and that sort of stuff before the Church votes. And then the Judicial Council and the United Managed Church has ruled that the annual conference must vote. So not only do you have a local deadline,
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John Lowry: you also have a conference-wide deadline for action on this. So when when we say, look, the clock is ticking, you can't sit around and wait for two thousand and twenty-four that that's simply a fact.
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Andy Miller III: So here's my Ah! Scenario, that even here in Mississippi, which a lot of people would think most of the churches are conservative, or the theologically orthodox, would affirm the the the discipline as it stands. There are several churches that I've talked to. They say things like this. Well, we know we're a conservative church like I. Well, there might be a couple of people who wouldn't be but probably ninety percent, but their passers, haven't said a word about it.
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Andy Miller III: They haven't entered into the into the process, and they don't know, like what's going to happen. So here are local church members and meet me the Salvation Army guy telling them. Look, you need to get started. What What do they do, Jeff? What should they do at this point like? They think that this is where their church is, but their pastor is not doing something. What advice do you give them?
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Jeff Greenway: Yeah. Well, that's one of the reasons we wrote the book multiplying Methodism. It's available on Amazon. The reason we wrote the book
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Jeff Greenway: was to help the average lay person Sunny's class board chair lay leader. Ah, pastor, to be able to pick this up and have a definitive guide. About the first half of the book is, Why is this necessary? And why is this the time and the second half of the book is why we believe that for most united methods not all, but for motion. I met this. The Global Methodist Church will be the best place for them to land, and the urgency of this is, I think, Mr. Lowry outlined that pretty well.
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Jeff Greenway: The thing I would add to what he said, is that each annual conference is developing their own process, because the protocol was not
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Jeff Greenway: considered two thousand and twenty-two or in two thousand and twenty or in two thousand and twenty or twenty twenty-two, and it will not be picked up in two thousand and twenty-four, but because of that we're living in a time, like the Book of Judges, where everybody does what twice in our own eyes, and every annual conference has a slightly different approach to taking on that paragraph in the books of discipline. I have to be serving in an annual conference. It's been very reasonable,
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Jeff Greenway: you know. We have to pay. Ah, Ah! Some apportionments on the way out. The door is either one or two years depending on. If your church is current, and we have to pay our fair share of the unfunded pension liability other than that we don't have; and if if a church received a new church start, grant in the last five years, they have to return that all that said that's reasonable compared to some other places across the connection.
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Jeff Greenway: And and once again, Yeah. And churches that are there. There's no time to wait until twenty, twenty, four, and I I hear this a lot, Andy, I hear Pastor say, Well, nothing's changed. The Book of Discipline Hasn't changed. Well, that's true. I tell people all the time
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Jeff Greenway: there's really nothing wrong with our present quality
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Jeff Greenway: at all,
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Jeff Greenway: except that it's not enforceable. We're not governable. We can't hold anybody accountable. And the thing, I would add is that especially for folks in Mississippi and places have been blessed to have more Evangelical bishops like Central Texas, have a bishop. Lowry
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Jeff Greenway: is that there's a bunch of bishops who either have retired or are retiring Now, in the United Methodist Church,
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Jeff Greenway: elected its last Evangelical Bishop. Wow!
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John Lowry: I would want to add,
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John Lowry: it will not happen again. And And so this this idea that you won't have to compromise your values you won't have to compromise your principles when the person in the chair. This has the actual authority to make. The appointment has a different agenda
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Jeff Greenway: that hurts churches.
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Jeff Greenway: It's not it doesn't. Take long for that to deteriorate in an annual conference. Culture Bishop. I'm sorry I'm stepped on you.
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John Lowry: No, that's quite all right now. And, boy folks, I hope you've heard what Jeff shared. I I want to put an explanation mark on it. The one other thing I would want to add, By the way, is that the way civil war lately mean that not only are you subject to
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John Lowry: to different conferences acting in different ways, I like Jeff's allusion to the Book of Judges. Everyone's doing what they think is right in their own kingdom, if you will,
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John Lowry: or in their own realm. But on top of that civil chords ruled that this is that trust clause. Issues are often a matter of State
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John Lowry: law and trusting.
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John Lowry: So, for instance, that gets ruled one way in the State of Texas in a very different way, in the state of Ohio
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John Lowry: and and and now I wouldn't begin to answer how it's going to be ruled in Florida, which is currently involved in a lawsuit with something like one Ah! Hundred and six churches, or some number over one. Ah, ah!
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John Lowry: Ah! Precisely on trust clause issues. So on top of the conference issue you have issues of civil law to be considered, and you can't assume that the law in one State is the same as in another.
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Andy Miller III: Correct me if i'm wrong about the trust clause, so the trust clause is essentially this piece of not discipline of legislation or organization or constitution. Go ahead, Jeff. You're going to.
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Jeff Greenway: Yeah, Yeah. The The trust clause actually goes all the way back to John Wesley.
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Jeff Greenway: Okay, when societies were purchasing property, had a trust clause put in the property that if they ever ceased being a Methodist
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Jeff Greenway: movement, the the property would revert to the nomination the reason for it, the historical reason for the trust clause was to assure doctrinal integrity. Well, the ship is sailed on that a long time ago. The purpose of the trust clause of the present setting is to hold people together to hold something together. And and so the the and and in Ohio the the courts would rule in favor of the annual Congress every time so churches would have to release their property, to be able to leave.
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Jeff Greenway: That's why, having the protocol, or having a protocol in place, would have been great. That's why twenty, five, fifty, three is the only paragraph we can use, because it gives away for
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Jeff Greenway: churches to fulfill the requirements to have a release of trust, so they take their property and assets with them, and it's not just such as real estate it's. It's all the accounts. It's, all the assets, it's all of the property, the real property that a church has accumulated over time. So most unite methods. Don't understand this, but the local church doesn't own their building.
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Jeff Greenway: They hold it in trust for the denomination for the annual Conference. Actually. So that's why the second vote has to take place for the annual conference to release the to release the the church denominationally. So the Conference trustees can then release the trust loss.
00:27:20.600 --> 00:27:33.189
Jeff Greenway: It doesn't matter how much your family, how many millions of dollars your family has raised for that church building. How many generations of clergy persons in your family came out of that church or out of the denomination doesn't matter.
00:27:33.200 --> 00:27:35.790
John Lowry: So let me put it this way. The Pew Bible.
00:27:35.800 --> 00:27:42.199
John Lowry: Okay, that exists in your local church belongs under the trust.
00:27:42.210 --> 00:28:02.959
John Lowry: Yeah, you know what I mean, and and if you flip those open, as in most cases, the the hymn, or the Bible, or whatever you know, is given by so-and-so and memory of you know a beloved grandmother, or something, you know one of the saints who's gone on to their reward, and
00:28:02.970 --> 00:28:16.000
John Lowry: you know we can't emphasize this enough, and and and I thought both of the God at the fact that this process is not a quick process. This is not falling together and voting. Next week
00:28:16.510 --> 00:28:29.590
Jeff Greenway: we will tell you. Our Church Conference is this: next Sunday, September the twenty fifth, and I've been preparing our church first, publicly for six years, privately for ten.
00:28:29.600 --> 00:28:30.640
Andy Miller III: Okay.
00:28:30.650 --> 00:28:34.470
Jeff Greenway: And you can't believe the volume of work,
00:28:34.970 --> 00:28:45.690
Jeff Greenway: the the hoops that have to be jumped through, that I have to jump through to document what we have, so that the conference knows what they're signing off on to release.
00:28:45.700 --> 00:28:46.640
Andy Miller III: Wow!
00:28:47.030 --> 00:28:58.489
Jeff Greenway: You know i'm grateful. I My board chair told me the other night, he said. I don't know how small churches that don't have people to help get this done right because it takes time. It's extensive.
00:28:58.500 --> 00:29:07.569
Jeff Greenway: Where do you rescue your people? Go? I mean, will your book help with some of that? Or is there some place they could go to for advice for how to functionally do this?
00:29:07.580 --> 00:29:09.019
Jeff Greenway: Yeah, the the the
00:29:09.030 --> 00:29:10.989
Jeff Greenway: the book. The first four chapters of the book
00:29:11.000 --> 00:29:27.089
Jeff Greenway: really make the case for why but the last, the last part of the book there's an addendum or an appendix where we have some recommended resources, and there's a list of those resources there. They can go to the Wesley Covenant Association website to get help on getting out
00:29:27.100 --> 00:29:55.580
Jeff Greenway: I go to the Global Methodist Church website to get clarity about what's coming. I think you go. There's a website called people Need Jesus Org, where Chris Ritter has done a compendium of all things that have happened in the United States Church. Around this issue for the last six years. He's got all in one location which can make you your head hurt, and your stomach ache at the same time as you read through those. But that gives you up. There's a whole host of information that's out there.
00:29:55.590 --> 00:29:58.340
Jeff Greenway: Um for people that need to be educated
00:29:58.650 --> 00:29:59.890
Andy Miller III: that's really helpful.
00:29:59.900 --> 00:30:27.829
Andy Miller III: You're talking about the ownership of the Church, and in my tradition it follows: Ah, William Booth adapted a version of Methodism, Methodist New connection in England, and then it took it to an extreme form, so that everything for all time was technically owned by the general, the Sally charm, so that kind of like as somebody who grew up in a savage, or a pastor's home or officers home. The the phrase to be said Don't jump on the general's couch right, because, like it all, was owned by the general,
00:30:27.840 --> 00:30:45.669
Andy Miller III: and and now it's kind of worked out in a corporate way to each each area and um. Unfortunately, everything that's within the system legally has that. But this is what you have as a kind of internal discipline or internal legislation that gives this one opportunity. I just want to
00:30:45.680 --> 00:30:59.849
Andy Miller III: highlight again, folks. If you've not done this. If this Hasn't happened to your church, you haven't heard about it. Go to your pastor and say we need to have this conversation. Maybe your church won't do it. Maybe there won't be the will from your congregation, but
00:30:59.860 --> 00:31:23.559
Andy Miller III: two thousand and twenty-two September two thousand and twenty-two Now is the time to get this moving. Anything else you want to add to the urgency before we get on to some of the the vision of what your book is. Say it's not just what we're gonna leave running, leaving. But it's what we're going to that I think I love. But I I I still think this moment of getting out is an important thing to highlight. So I want to make sure to give you guys space to say that whatever it needs to be said
00:31:23.570 --> 00:31:31.290
John Lowry: so. The only other thing I'd add is that is that we counsel reasonableness in terms of pension. Okay.
00:31:31.300 --> 00:31:52.230
John Lowry: So so we're in where you stand on pension obligations varies from conference to conference, depending on how they've had it. So um, no one's going to escape pension obligations and the Global Methodist Church getting ahead of ourselves a little bit, but is also going to work with West path,
00:31:52.240 --> 00:32:03.909
John Lowry: so that pastors ah in churches don't need to really worry about their pension that that is taken care of in ways that are fair and reasonable,
00:32:03.920 --> 00:32:30.829
Jeff Greenway: and and nor do retirees. Yeah, my dad was. He and I met this clergy person. He's been gone for thirteen years, but my mother lives on that pension, and I had people early in the process. Call my mother and say that I was gonna have pension taken away. But the fact of the matter is is the reason we're paying the pension obligations on the way out the door is to guarantee in perpetuity
00:32:30.980 --> 00:32:36.969
Jeff Greenway: the the fulfillment of all the pension obligations that have been established over the fifty two year history of the church the
00:32:37.220 --> 00:32:39.070
John Lowry: So when I secure it.
00:32:39.190 --> 00:33:02.359
John Lowry: Yeah. So what I Yeah. So I've stepped on Jeff and I don't want to his comment. Those are secure, and it needs to be carefully heard. What I like to tell people, because it's true, and they need to understand it is pension stuff is actually governed by United States law in the United States. That's not something a general conference can do,
00:33:02.370 --> 00:33:11.700
John Lowry: and so they can't take away your pension any more than General Motors can take away the pension of people that have worked for General Motors. I mean that
00:33:11.770 --> 00:33:27.089
John Lowry: you know there's civil law that covers that, And I also want to add, and I've already said it.
00:33:27.100 --> 00:33:46.050
John Lowry: It's a corporation. It's this like a Oh, i'm sorry. West Westpan is the general agency of the United Methodist Church. Ah! That used to be called the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits. So it's now called West Path and the pension part of that
00:33:46.180 --> 00:33:53.809
John Lowry: It is something that we're working in conjunction, and Jeff Jeff can add to it. I think he has a better grass.
00:33:53.820 --> 00:33:55.529
Jeff Greenway: Yeah, the um.
00:33:55.860 --> 00:34:00.719
Jeff Greenway: The short version of this is when the General Conference meets for the United Methods Church,
00:34:00.910 --> 00:34:11.460
Jeff Greenway: it will be closing out the latest of what is three different pension segments of the pension plan of the United States, all of which the previous ones have the fine benefit portions to them.
00:34:11.540 --> 00:34:17.249
Jeff Greenway: They'll be moving to a defiant contribution plan in two thousand and twenty four that is going to happen.
00:34:17.260 --> 00:34:46.429
Jeff Greenway: The ah! The plan that has been developed for the whole Methodist Church is a is a defined contribution plan that bureau's what is being offered in the United Methodist Church. So there are separate plans. West Path rebranded itself several years ago to prepare for this eventuality that could serve more than just united Methodist congregations. And the other thing that West Bath is an apartment with us on is the development of a denomination, wide health, health, health insurance system
00:34:46.440 --> 00:34:49.749
Jeff Greenway: be offered to all the clergy and lay employees of the church.
00:34:49.940 --> 00:35:14.059
Andy Miller III: This is that's a um a key question, because some people will chalk up the moving away at this point to say, Well, there's so many things that think about. We have pension. We have healthcare we've Well, there's your answer, folks, so I mean so, Jeff, if if all all likely, I don't want to assume that your church will vote to disaffiliate, but it seems like that groundwork has been laid by leadership in your church.
00:35:14.070 --> 00:35:19.890
Jeff Greenway: Tell them you still have years to serve. What will this mean for you personally.
00:35:19.900 --> 00:35:26.390
Jeff Greenway: So I will. I will retire as a United Methodist on December the thirty first.
00:35:26.400 --> 00:35:39.489
Jeff Greenway: Okay, I will withdraw phenomena in Methodist Church on January first, and i'll be an active elder in the Global Methodist Church, beginning at that time my pension and I Methodist Church will be sealed in my retirement.
00:35:39.500 --> 00:35:43.960
Jeff Greenway: I have. I'll have thirty, seven, and a half years of service in now
00:35:43.980 --> 00:35:55.889
Jeff Greenway: to those listening. If you have twenty years or under that's a different conversation. But you need to call West Path to see what those implications would be for you. There are different paragraphs less than twenty years of service,
00:35:55.900 --> 00:36:15.359
Jeff Greenway: twenty, thirty, thirty-five, and forty, and West Path will confidentially work with you. They will tell you exactly what the implications are, and they will tell you what would be best. The best advice for you at that particular time, and so I will. My church will just continue to pay, but they'll pay into a new fund,
00:36:15.370 --> 00:36:30.169
Jeff Greenway: starting in January of two thousand and twenty three. Now the health care, system, health care questions is a little bit more complicated, but every annual conference gives you the right to purchase up to a year after you withdraw. It's not cobra, but it's like cobra, and so
00:36:30.180 --> 00:36:44.349
Jeff Greenway: it's going to take a little bit of time for the grew of the the new denomination to fill out. So there's enough critical mass to be able to for for that insurance to be to be bid upon in prices to be set, but
00:36:44.360 --> 00:36:52.789
Jeff Greenway: that'll happen in January, one of two thousand and twenty-four so for the next year. I'm going to purchase the health care from the West Ohio Conference,
00:36:52.800 --> 00:37:04.020
Jeff Greenway: and have the same health care I've had, so that it's the as the denomination of population. There's enough people in the pool who will be able to price out the insurance premiums going on.
00:37:04.520 --> 00:37:06.890
Jeff Greenway: So that's all that's being cared for.
00:37:06.900 --> 00:37:33.679
John Lowry: This is so good to hear, and and like some people, might be saying, Oh, all these administrative details! I don't really want to think about this, but i'm telling you there's a reason to think about this, and it has to do with the fact that we believe that God create. I'm. Backed up here And, Bishop, I have a question coming for you at this my God grade the world out of nothing that He revealed Himself through the description of the Old New Testament. Jesus was raised from the dead that he has a place of. He's taking the world like we want to. And you know that means that we need to think about some of these details.
00:37:33.690 --> 00:37:43.420
Andy Miller III: But could you tell us a bit like, what is the picture of what makes this worth it for you to work through all of these administrative challenges.
00:37:43.920 --> 00:37:53.390
John Lowry: Well, I think that the first and most basic thing we need to talk about is faithfulness to God, whose common Christ to the presence and power of the Holy Spirit.
00:37:53.400 --> 00:37:55.480
John Lowry: And you know,
00:37:55.720 --> 00:38:01.079
John Lowry: I mean, think about. I think, about our faith. We're faith built on the blood of martyrs.
00:38:01.260 --> 00:38:08.009
John Lowry: We're built on those who gave it all, you know, to stand up for Christ
00:38:08.060 --> 00:38:14.089
John Lowry: and for the God who is, who is incarnate, who has come to us and is continuing with us
00:38:14.410 --> 00:38:33.320
John Lowry: the Holy Spirit present in our lives. And so, first and foremost, we actually need to go back to the basics. Our faithfulness is not to an institution that doesn't mean institutions don't matter. They do it doesn't mean they aren't important. They are important. But first and foremost
00:38:33.380 --> 00:38:45.289
John Lowry: we think and we believe that we are called into faithfulness to God, and part of faithfulness is to actually place our trust in God.
00:38:45.300 --> 00:39:01.559
John Lowry: So. And I like to quote the old camp, meeting him, trust and obey, trust, and obey, for there's no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey, and and a a way we can think of
00:39:01.570 --> 00:39:31.459
John Lowry: of of the Christian faith, of the Biblical concept of fide is is that in the old Roman Lexicon it actually came closer to a sense of fidelity or allegiance than it did to to just sort of intellectual belief or staying the magic words. And you're saved, or something like that. And so foundationally we think that's what's at stake. We have a chapter in the book that we talk about being on the right side of
00:39:31.470 --> 00:39:42.929
John Lowry: history and and and that's one of those chapters where both of us can point the paragraphs we wrote in that chapter. We did it very much together, if you will,
00:39:42.940 --> 00:39:52.099
John Lowry: and and in that we talk about the the foundational sense that we are called to be a people who actually
00:39:52.530 --> 00:39:53.890
John Lowry: lil
00:39:53.930 --> 00:39:55.430
John Lowry: trump sting on.
00:39:55.440 --> 00:39:56.540
00:39:56.570 --> 00:40:01.479
John Lowry: I think I think Christ is worthy. I mean, I think it's It's that basic.
00:40:01.670 --> 00:40:05.379
John Lowry: And we're not pretending it'll be easy. It won't be
00:40:05.420 --> 00:40:12.200
John Lowry: you know one of the things someone should hear by now is It's much more complex than people think,
00:40:13.420 --> 00:40:23.619
John Lowry: and and one needs to understand that. But in it all. There. There is a joy in walking with the Lord, and so let's get back to Let's get back to
00:40:23.630 --> 00:40:47.350
John Lowry: from the foundational issues of our faith. This is a and one of the challenges that come from this. Jeff is like. We have to make a clear statement that if we're walking with the Lord in consistent consistently with the orthodox witness from Scripture, and, like a Methodist movement, has met a means that we're There's a subtle way. We're suggesting that if you
00:40:47.360 --> 00:41:01.759
Jeff Greenway: move against that trist, you're you're not. This is like this is a hard thing to say, because then then, people oh, you're making a good and a bad sign, or this type of thing. Um, like Jeff are we? Is there? Is it in either or here?
00:41:03.250 --> 00:41:10.790
Jeff Greenway: Well, Andy, I loved the at the beginning of the of the podcast you were you were putting out there about your book about Jews?
00:41:10.800 --> 00:41:18.099
Jeff Greenway: Yeah, right? That's a key part of what we've been talking about about contending for the faith that's been once the trusted to the saints,
00:41:18.490 --> 00:41:20.389
Jeff Greenway: the language I've been
00:41:20.400 --> 00:41:45.639
Jeff Greenway: the image I use when I'm out speaking to churches about this is, I'll use a rubber band, and i'll say sometimes the way you change people as you kind of move a band. You can use a rubber band. Illustrate you, move it. They come along and move, and they come along. You're going to come along. What's happening in I Methods church is this faithful people put a stake in the ground in one thousand nine hundred and seventy two, and said, We are not moving from here. Meanwhile progresses have continued to move off the map,
00:41:45.650 --> 00:42:04.490
Jeff Greenway: so that this rubber band is stretched to its very seams or to its end, one of the images the in my Methodist Church was, it was established. We have big tent of Methodism, where we kind of all lived in this underneath the same ten. Well, the the ten is coming apart at the seams, because we use the same words.
00:42:04.700 --> 00:42:07.029
Jeff Greenway: We quote the same Scriptures.
00:42:07.350 --> 00:42:19.240
Jeff Greenway: We cite the same sermons of John Wesley. We pledge fidelity to the same book of discipline. But we're really talking about entirely different expressions of faith. And so
00:42:19.250 --> 00:42:30.089
Jeff Greenway: i'm not going to throw a rock at somebody who has a different expression of faith. I'm. Just saying, that is not the tradition out of into which I was ordained. That is not the best of the tradition of the Wesleyan movement,
00:42:30.100 --> 00:42:42.939
Jeff Greenway: and and we are trying to to reclaim the historic understanding of those words. For example, when you and I talk about Jesus. We talk about the incarnate living Son of God, born of the Virgin Mary
00:42:42.950 --> 00:43:02.509
Jeff Greenway: with a perfect life, died of sacrificial death, physically died, was placed in a tune. Three days later physically rose again, walked on the earth for forty days before he ascended into heaven and said The Holy Spirit ten days later. We believe that that's a historical fact that has changed the face of the human family.
00:43:02.520 --> 00:43:28.829
Jeff Greenway: But I have friends that cross their fingers behind their back when they're not being asked that question during our nation, and they think it's just an allegory of the kind of a metaphor of what God does when he intersects in people's lives. And And so what I would say is, either Jesus is, he said He is, and did everything he promised he would do, or we have absolutely nothing like changing life giving to offer the world about part of that for us
00:43:28.840 --> 00:43:45.939
Jeff Greenway: is balancing grace and truth. Right? See grace without truth, which, by the way, there's a whole segment of the Church that wants to talk about grace all the time, and i'm. I'm. There. I want to talk about grace. But grace without truth is licensed to do whatever you want, and it doesn't change anybody's life
00:43:46.000 --> 00:43:50.689
Jeff Greenway: but truth without grace is legalism,
00:43:50.700 --> 00:44:06.299
Jeff Greenway: and that's repugnant to me, but grace and truth together, and the right balance is Jesus full of grace and truth. And and when when we meet Jesus life change, and he invites us to walk with him from this life into the next.
00:44:06.310 --> 00:44:25.970
Jeff Greenway: And so you know, for the folks who think that you know orthodox having a job, for United Methodists are just a bunch of hand-fisted Luddites. Um, I would just tell you that I I I understand that the trends of Scripture is like guard. Rails are put in place to keep our lives out of the ditch,
00:44:26.010 --> 00:44:39.359
Jeff Greenway: and when we jump the garden rails and our life ends up in the dish. Guess what Jesus is there with us, and He pulls us right back on the path. We don't have to go back, start all over again. He pulls us back on the path, faces us in the right direction, and we keep walking,
00:44:39.370 --> 00:44:58.590
Jeff Greenway: and that's the kind of faith that we want to be. I think that's what Wesley offered. I think that's the best of our traditions, and that's what we're trying to reclaim, not license to do, whatever you want, and not ah, not a a ham Fisted legalism that hurts people, but rather a life-giving balance of race and truth. That's what we're after.
00:44:58.600 --> 00:45:20.699
Andy Miller III: Amen. Oh, What a beautiful picture! A few weeks ago I had on my podcast Dr. Roger Olson, who doesn't come from the you know Methodist tradition, Maybe the more evangelical broad like tradition back that, and he's an Armenian. But yeah, he suggested that what we have in theological Liberalism again, not thinking about the and and i'm at this church. But just theological liberalism in general is
00:45:20.710 --> 00:45:28.639
Andy Miller III: a different religion, he said. We might as well call it Unitarianism like. We might as well say that that's what this is,
00:45:28.650 --> 00:45:35.790
John Lowry: and I like to say we have a version of Methodism that is Unitarian United methods.
00:45:35.800 --> 00:45:37.790
John Lowry: Okay, there you go,
00:45:37.800 --> 00:45:50.970
John Lowry: and and and for us the issue is not. Do we love people? Ah, who are homosexual answers? Yes, Is grace for them? Yes.
00:45:51.170 --> 00:46:03.940
John Lowry: Do we want to walk with with folks that have a different sexual attraction. Absolutely. Our care does not stop.
00:46:04.040 --> 00:46:17.779
John Lowry: This is that's why for us. We believe so deeply. This is about orthodoxy, and if you, if you look at the opening thing, we list five deeply theological reasons. Jeff's lined them out
00:46:17.790 --> 00:46:38.489
John Lowry: for you real real quickly that that are part of why we think it's time to make a change, and then we add the six to it, which which is a which is used. Church language is ecclesiological, that is to say, it's about organization, and that is, that the United Methods Church, as it is, has become ungovernable,
00:46:38.520 --> 00:46:47.530
John Lowry: so so that part of the issue is. But I like to say to people, Hey, I I I was a bishop who was being faithful to the discipline as it was written.
00:46:47.930 --> 00:47:02.669
John Lowry: I upheld it. You know that. Anyhow, I get ahead of myself. So what we want to point to is is the orthodox faith, and you know I made a note on my pad about your book on Jude. I I do think
00:47:02.680 --> 00:47:14.509
John Lowry: that that's really good, and I can remember Jeff and I served together on the on the board of United Theological Seminary, which I I do a quick advertisement, for I think is a wonderful summary,
00:47:14.520 --> 00:47:28.210
John Lowry: and I remember Jeff and I got together for coffee after a board meeting one day over near the airport, I was getting ready to catch a flight. Jeff, drive back to Reynolds, and and we sat there, and and one of the things we ended up
00:47:28.220 --> 00:47:40.289
John Lowry: into is looking at the Book of Jude, and looking at the the faith once delivered. And so what's at stake here Is not loving people
00:47:40.300 --> 00:47:43.639
John Lowry: right? What's it? So it is orthodoxy.
00:47:43.650 --> 00:47:54.989
Jeff Greenway: Yeah, Bishop alluded to these five things here. There are five fundamental theological differences that have stretched that reprimand out. We don't agree on the natural and authority of Scripture.
00:47:55.000 --> 00:48:07.390
Jeff Greenway: Our hermeneutics are entirely different. We don't agree on the nature of all the divinity of Jesus. Our understanding of Christology is different. We don't agree on the nature of atonement for sin.
00:48:07.400 --> 00:48:12.579
Jeff Greenway: Right? We don't agree on that one. What justification is? Hmm.
00:48:12.600 --> 00:48:25.950
Jeff Greenway: And we don't agree on sanctification, because if we agreed on sanctification, we wouldn't want to be acknowledging different pet sins to say that they're okay. We would want people to be saved to the uttermost to go Wesley,
00:48:25.960 --> 00:48:35.450
Jeff Greenway: and so part of part of what we're involved in part of the reason we're hopeful about what we're trying to build. Is it's really about a theological renewal?
00:48:35.460 --> 00:49:05.419
Jeff Greenway: It's a theological renewal of of the theology and the and the fundamental practice of a movement that changed our world a couple hundred years ago, and was the primary shape or the spiritual development of a nation. Ah! Into the middle of the one thousand eight hundred and fifty, until the middle of the eighteen hundreds, and ever since then we've been living on the fumes of what that was, as we've kind of lost the class meeting, and we lost all these different pieces and part of what we have the opportunity to do is to
00:49:05.430 --> 00:49:34.599
Jeff Greenway: and some of those back end of the Dna of the church, and see it flourish again. It's what's interesting is in June. It's somewhat submerged because Jude uses these strange sources. After you get in verses five to twenty, four, we know the end now. To him. He was able to keep you from some way. We don't contend to the But then all this interesting stuff about Moses's body and angels, and then different things. But i'm telling behind all of that, and it takes
00:49:34.610 --> 00:49:49.489
Andy Miller III: it's a while to unpack. It is our clear words, even about human sexuality that need to be expressed in our time. Interesting enough of William Barkley said that it's during periods of revival throughout church history that the book of Jude has been recovered
00:49:49.500 --> 00:50:03.480
Andy Miller III: like it's an it's an interesting moment. And in my study what's been interesting, I wrote. I had it in mind. It's A. It's a actually video study for small groups, and it's going to become a book. But, like you, I wanted to get out there. I was thinking of my denomination, which is struggling like with
00:50:03.490 --> 00:50:18.599
Jeff Greenway: the early signs of these same things, like where there are regions of the Salvation Army that are moving against our shared beliefs, and we have that Podcast, where you and Matt Friedman were doing that together
00:50:18.620 --> 00:50:33.040
Jeff Greenway: because I I saw the news, I said, I bet you Andy's going to say something about this. Well, thank you for watching. I appreciate it. It's exactly what we're dealing with. So I did this study that. But then, to my surprise,
00:50:33.050 --> 00:50:42.069
Andy Miller III: those people in the Sabbath charm are using it, but it's Oh, I had Rob Renfro on to talk about some of the things that were happening probably two months ago,
00:50:42.250 --> 00:50:45.859
Andy Miller III: and I offered it the Discount code. Well,
00:50:45.870 --> 00:51:09.789
John Lowry: I have all kinds of churches that are using it in the disaffiliation process. You know. I was thinking United Methodism when I wrote it in the emerging gold method. So I I told Rock for this just this week that all of the codes were taken, so I doubled the code. So if you use the code, Rob Rob, you can get fifty percent off this thing. Okay, So
00:51:09.800 --> 00:51:10.490
Andy Miller III: yeah,
00:51:10.500 --> 00:51:17.290
Andy Miller III: thank you so much. And you had advertisement. I let out advertisement for United Wbs throw that one back in there. So
00:51:17.300 --> 00:51:17.790
Andy Miller III: okay,
00:51:17.800 --> 00:51:26.540
Andy Miller III: now, Jeff, this is interesting to think of where we're going. What describe this? See a picture of what
00:51:26.840 --> 00:51:32.020
Andy Miller III: church that's faithful to its shared beliefs can be.
00:51:33.240 --> 00:51:43.570
Jeff Greenway: I'm i'm actually serving one because I've had a front row seat to see what's coming. Let me just give you two or three examples. One of the things that
00:51:43.580 --> 00:51:58.809
Jeff Greenway: what we've done in the last three years is, we've launched twenty, five to thirty. What? We're calling Wesley groups which are really class meetings and um, and those class meetings. Ah, we we we launched new ones every every four months.
00:51:58.820 --> 00:52:15.780
Jeff Greenway: So it gives people the opportunity to dive in and and and and it's not about information. It's about transformation. The material we developed to help them along is based upon the sermon of that week. So we're reinforcing what's been spoken in the week, but also building the accountability pieces into it.
00:52:15.790 --> 00:52:32.179
Jeff Greenway: But here's Here's what's happening here. I um! There are two hundred and fifty or so. The nine methods, churches and a fifty mile radius of Columbus, Ohio, and only twenty or twenty five of us are going to go to the Global Methodist Church, and the word is out
00:52:32.220 --> 00:52:37.290
Jeff Greenway: every Sunday. We have people coming from other churches
00:52:37.300 --> 00:52:59.720
Jeff Greenway: that are looking for what we're having to offer. We've received, you know, there so probably one hundred and fifty new people in the last three months have started coming here. And now here's what I know. Some of them are driving forty miles, and thank you, that's not sustainable. And so what we're doing is we are planning to see that at least five of those Wesley groups
00:52:59.730 --> 00:53:24.189
Jeff Greenway: are going to become micro house churches strategically located around the Columbus area so that people can gather together, maybe worship online with us and then have their class meeting and then be in ministry together. And over time that can develop into its own congregation in that kind of a setting.
00:53:24.200 --> 00:53:32.349
Jeff Greenway: This church started as a class meeting and a blacksmith shop about a half mile from our present location. One hundred and ninety years ago
00:53:32.360 --> 00:53:35.950
Jeff Greenway: it was one of thirty preaching points on a circuit,
00:53:35.960 --> 00:54:05.850
Jeff Greenway: and one hundred and ninety years later twenty of those thirty preaching points are now stand-alone congregations. And so we're we're just trying to reclaim some of our Dna. But that's that's part of what it. Yeah, it. It looks like lifting the value of accountable discipleship. It looks like the missionally engaged in your community. It looks like it looks like, So we're asking each one of those Wesley groups to find their place of mission to pray about what God is needing them to do in our community.
00:54:05.860 --> 00:54:20.830
Jeff Greenway: So instead of just the church having large serving opportunities, we're we're empowering twenty, five to thirty small groups of people, Little the Ecclesiola within the Ecclesi. Ah, to actually be church in thirty different unique ways.
00:54:20.840 --> 00:54:36.249
Jeff Greenway: And we're actually that initiative is starting this month this month to do that. And it's amazing to see the kind of things they're gonna. They're They're doing so. It looks like a a a modernized version of an old
00:54:36.260 --> 00:54:49.299
Jeff Greenway: process of class meetings which we call Wesley groups that are on mission in their community because we want to see the lost saved. We want to see the saved discipled,
00:54:49.310 --> 00:54:58.140
Jeff Greenway: and when we want to see the disciples making and sending disciples. See, we're called to be disciples who make disciples who make disciples. That's what it looks like.
00:54:58.920 --> 00:55:01.509
Andy Miller III: Gotcha beautiful. Bishop, you want to add to. That
00:55:01.620 --> 00:55:05.910
John Lowry: is sort of an emphatic Amen.
00:55:05.920 --> 00:55:31.090
John Lowry: So if if one looks at this, it it involves um taking seriously commitments that are embedded at the heart of the Christian faith. Ah, ah! Reclaiming, if you will, at the heart of the Christian faith. So when Jeff talks, we're talking about human thriving with a conversion that is real, not simply a minor improvement
00:55:31.650 --> 00:56:00.979
John Lowry: on the human condition, but a genuine conversion to Christ as Lord and Saber We're talking about initial engagement in a way that has a hands-on component with real people in real human situations we're talking about being global for day one because we will find some of these local groups that that will engage across the street, and we're going to find some that are going to engage across the world,
00:56:01.340 --> 00:56:09.229
John Lowry: and we're we're talking about here, I think a genuine recovery of an evangelistic impulse
00:56:09.310 --> 00:56:24.689
John Lowry: that's not taking step scalps, but rather about life transformation about. I like to say, human thriving at its very best comes under the lordship of Jesus, and that's what we're after, not settling
00:56:25.670 --> 00:56:28.069
John Lowry: for a cultural image
00:56:28.710 --> 00:56:38.790
John Lowry: that is ultimately idolatrous, but rather, but rather living under the lordship. Christ. Will we do that perfectly in the Gmc. Absolutely not.
00:56:38.800 --> 00:56:52.630
John Lowry: You know. I I think it's. I think I got it from Jeff, but I may have gotten it from somebody else before him that you know. If you want a perfect church, whatever you do don't join it, because once you join it, it won't be perfect,
00:56:52.800 --> 00:57:09.140
John Lowry: and you know my wife will be glad to tell you that about me. But At the same time we want a church where it's real, where people are submitted to Christ, where they actually love their neighbors, whether their neighbors agree with them or not,
00:57:09.150 --> 00:57:13.430
John Lowry: where they're actually reaching out to the
00:57:13.440 --> 00:57:30.090
John Lowry: hurting and hungry, whether it's at home or across the world. So we do, by the way, talk in those five things we have a closing chapter on Reasons to join the Gmc. And one of the things we talk about, we're going to be global.
00:57:30.100 --> 00:57:31.109
Andy Miller III: Hmm.
00:57:31.120 --> 00:57:53.130
John Lowry: This isn't going to be, an this isn't going to be a retreat from the world but an embrace of it in the early Christian way in which we say we're in, but not of the world. And I I think fundamentally what we're about in this book is the issue of lordship is to say is, Is the culture going to be your Lord, which means It's an idle,
00:57:53.670 --> 00:57:56.740
John Lowry: or or is Jesus Christ your Lord?
00:57:56.750 --> 00:58:14.409
John Lowry: And that to be on the right side of history is to have him as your lord. And then the altar. Dean, in his famous quote is one I really like here. He and I got a slightly paraphrasing. He or she who marries the present age will be a widow in the next, or a widow,
00:58:14.550 --> 00:58:24.570
Andy Miller III: and the book is multiplying. Methodism, a bold witness of Wesley and Faith at the dawn of a Global Methodist church, Jeff, you wanted to add something there.
00:58:25.060 --> 00:58:43.200
Jeff Greenway: Well, a Bishop Lorry and one of the chapters really did a good job of laying a foundational framework for this church that I think captures four pillars that is going to stand on it's genuine and the orthodox. It's truly Westland. It's unashamedly, evangelistic, and it's passionately missionable.
00:58:43.530 --> 00:58:49.560
Jeff Greenway: Those are four corners of a foundation upon which we built what's coming. The
00:58:49.570 --> 00:59:18.930
Andy Miller III: Yeah. I'm: curious as somebody working in theological education, one of the key ways that the unfortunately the global method of the United Methodist Church began to slip, was losing theological orthodoxy at most of the seminaries I like particularly particularly the denominationally affiliated ones. Nevertheless, like this is an interest to me. And you guys are both on the board at United Seminary at Westerly Biblical Seminary. We're interested in making sure we're available to serve, particularly those
00:59:18.940 --> 00:59:38.789
Andy Miller III: in our region. But also we have a a global reach as well, obviously as we're talking about what you think I know it's. I know it's not just up to you to. But but I know you've been in the the Pope Hamilton the room where it's happened. Um, so what What's theological education going to be like in the Gmc.
00:59:40.070 --> 00:59:43.500
John Lowry: If you want to answer first, you want me to answer first,
00:59:44.170 --> 00:59:47.449
John Lowry: so so, so. So let me
00:59:47.460 --> 00:59:48.570
John Lowry: let me give up
00:59:48.580 --> 00:59:52.390
John Lowry: quick frame. I
00:59:52.400 --> 01:00:02.759
John Lowry: Well, we want to be careful Here we're You're getting our opinions and and the Gmc. In its own general conference could changes. But I but I don't imagine
01:00:02.770 --> 01:00:06.630
John Lowry: I don't imagine us endorsing certain seminaries,
01:00:07.330 --> 01:00:10.989
John Lowry: but rather buying into a process of faithfulness.
01:00:11.000 --> 01:00:15.319
John Lowry: And I and I think that's a distinctly different way to look at it.
01:00:16.240 --> 01:00:26.710
John Lowry: The issue is an issue of orthodoxy, and we believe ultimately orthodox seminaries are going to thrive in places that are won't
01:00:26.720 --> 01:00:44.379
John Lowry: right. And I mean, In fact, we write in that we write in the book. Ah, about different seminaries, where, if you go in and look ah, you have a hard time even finding the word Christ. It's there, but it's, you know, three pages deep in their introduction.
01:00:44.390 --> 01:00:46.390
John Lowry: Go ahead, Jeff. I gave you
01:00:46.400 --> 01:01:05.390
Jeff Greenway: well, Ah, Andy, as long as I can remember. Um, that I've had conversations with people Wesley Biblical, but I was at Asbury President I from Wesley, but when I had regular conversations and the the politics of the United Message Church prevented Wesley Biblical from ever being considered by University Senate.
01:01:05.400 --> 01:01:08.459
Jeff Greenway: Um! We are not going to have
01:01:08.730 --> 01:01:11.189
Jeff Greenway: denominational seminaries.
01:01:11.200 --> 01:01:27.219
Jeff Greenway: We are going to encourage our money that's going to so support. Ah, students to follow the student to the seminary, and here's a word for you. I encourage you to reach out to Angela Pleasant. You can find her information on the Gmc. Website,
01:01:27.230 --> 01:01:39.060
Jeff Greenway: and there's an application process for for seminar to be considered for a broad endorsement by the transitional Leadership Council. There It's interesting to hear some of the seminaries that are
01:01:39.140 --> 01:02:07.679
Jeff Greenway: are applying, which I would say over my dead body. Okay, I know some of them. Um. But that'll be a conversation that the transitional Leadership Council will have, so that we can begin to to to kind of uh signal to the rest of the church that fidelity we're after. Um, you know, Bishop and I will serve on the Board of United. It's a miracle. What's happened in that seminar in the last fifteen years? It's really kind of shifted back into a There's a strongly orthodox center there.
01:02:07.690 --> 01:02:08.689
Jeff Greenway: Um
01:02:08.700 --> 01:02:37.229
Jeff Greenway: but I also know that's one Dean or one president away from from fragility, right? And so that's the same way it would be for aspirator for Wesley. I mean it's who you have in place matters. And so my encouragement is to is to go ahead and do what's necessary to get in that queue, because we there will be seminaries that we we will be sending students to that would never have been able to receive,
01:02:37.240 --> 01:02:40.700
Jeff Greenway: because the University Senate would never have approved them,
01:02:41.590 --> 01:02:52.799
Jeff Greenway: and there are a student there. And but at the end of the day we're going to be looking at the fruit of the seminary or not in the product of the product that it produces.
01:02:52.810 --> 01:03:09.489
Jeff Greenway: So i'm looking forward to that kind of conversation I've had, you know, C. Blake for, and I were in seminary together. Oh, yeah, Matt and I were a seminary together, you know. I know all this. I know those folks, and that's that'll be a risk conversation. We're here there now, too. So we we look forward to the future as far as that goes.
01:03:09.500 --> 01:03:26.869
Andy Miller III: Yeah. And we we Ah, we have our application in. We got that in almost as soon as we knew it was there like. We want to be like this. This is the point, I think for like on our side, I think what you're gonna find is as a Global Methodist church emerges. There are people in the Evangelical Wesleyan tradition
01:03:26.880 --> 01:03:40.730
Andy Miller III: who now, I think, can come to united a global Methodism and say, Hey, you're a brother, or you are us like, even even for me personally, that might be. It's it's hard for me to imagine, like, let's say I was looking for a church right now.
01:03:40.740 --> 01:03:51.090
Andy Miller III: I couldn't quite join the United Methodist Church in light of the things that are happening. I just read an article, Jeff, from your area. I know you're originally from Western Pennsylvania.
01:03:51.100 --> 01:04:05.029
Andy Miller III: I think this this ah Guy puts up the Yaya methods, Pastor. It puts out things to talk about how he's polyamorous, how he longs for a day of being able to introduce not only his wife, but his girlfriend, and hopefully his future Same-sex partners
01:04:05.040 --> 01:04:22.090
Jeff Greenway: right, and it this is so many tight Yes, from western Pennsylvania. Let me just tell you the back story about that. The progress in Western Pennsylvania said, Oh, this is a something that the Evangelicals made up. It's not true. Well, it is true, the pastor has been suspended and is under complaint.
01:04:22.100 --> 01:04:23.520
Andy Miller III: Oh, there you go
01:04:23.640 --> 01:04:31.940
Jeff Greenway: so. But but interestingly enough, it's It's a yeah, that that's what's coming.
01:04:31.950 --> 01:04:33.189
Jeff Greenway: That's what's coming.
01:04:33.200 --> 01:04:34.019
Jeff Greenway: So
01:04:34.030 --> 01:04:36.290
John Lowry: did you find a scared judgment about?
01:04:36.300 --> 01:04:36.990
John Lowry: Go ahead?
01:04:37.000 --> 01:04:58.180
Andy Miller III: Oh, so i'm sorry, Bishop, I want to ask you like, cause you are a part of this, and you had to deal with on a regular basis. One of the things that I highlight is like. Well, you have a church that has an ordained practicing Lesbian bishop, and that was a colleague of yours. Never. I mean, this is this is not a scare tact, this this is the truth. What But where are you gonna? What were you going to say? The Bishop? I'm sorry by jumping prior to you.
01:04:58.190 --> 01:05:05.290
John Lowry: Oh, no, no, that's all right. I I think. Go ahead. I was. I was just going to add something about seminaries. And
01:05:05.300 --> 01:05:06.790
John Lowry: oh, please, yeah, I
01:05:06.800 --> 01:05:22.970
John Lowry: your progress to comment. We're going to judge them by the fruit, and and we're in a day and in America, in which, as we move into a post-christened of world in the United States, we have more seminaries than we have have need of,
01:05:22.980 --> 01:05:29.160
John Lowry: and already there is a fight, if you will, for students to admit
01:05:29.240 --> 01:05:39.959
John Lowry: and and and we're, I think one of the things i'm going to I'm going to predict is, you're going to see Evangelical seminaries, and by that I don't mean the
01:05:39.970 --> 01:06:09.490
John Lowry: standard standard ah use of that term? I mean seminar is that that are genuinely orthodox. Let me use that instead of you and Jello, they're they're they're going to grow, and they're going to grow because the pastors they produce are more capable. I I keep going back to this theme. This really is about human thriving folks, Jesus said, I've come that you might have life and have it yet more abundantly. And then that's real. That's That's not Jesus God
01:06:09.770 --> 01:06:11.589
John Lowry: spinning something.
01:06:11.600 --> 01:06:38.850
Jeff Greenway: Yeah, Well, I can confirm that that that's true. I don't know the statistics for the other seminaries, but for us we have the largest enrollment in our history. You might not believe it. I mean, if you've been to our campus, we have more than four hundred students right now, I mean, and this is this is at a time where theological education in in, not just in the I Methodism, but is retracting. You look at Gordon Conwell, Trinity
01:06:38.860 --> 01:07:08.729
Andy Miller III: Fuller. Each have taken Major, step back, and I hope that them taking those steps back administratively, hopefully, will help them continue to grow. But part of it, like Wesley, here we are like claiming our inheritance as the authority of Scripture in using the word inherently, because we want to make sure that we're we're connected to this truth that the Bible does not air. At the same time we're also like promoting every class that we have at west of Biblical Seminary at some point in the class. The Professor testifies the gods sanctifying work
01:07:08.740 --> 01:07:33.929
Andy Miller III: in their life, and calls upon others Guys Thomas, who says, seek it. Now I mean, this is, people would say that. That. Oh, you're so backwards. People that's actually bringing people to the Methodist tradition So i'm excited about what's going to happen in this broader pan-weslame movement. So it's encouraging, too, that you're not trying to that. The goldmet the church isn't trying to start the global Methanist seminary instead use these symptoms
01:07:33.940 --> 01:08:00.310
John Lowry: you see, one of the things Andy we're committed to is being as lean as possible when it comes to the institutional structure. One of the things that happened in the United States Church is the power structure, the Church being populated by people who are not representative of the average person in the pew, and and it doesn't take long to take a ship a different direction, if it's so dependent upon the structure and systems to do so, so it's. It's a lean mean,
01:08:00.320 --> 01:08:20.040
Jeff Greenway: you know, process we're involved in right now. It's amazing what we've been able to do in the last six years with about a thousand people giving their time. You know. The Wc. Only had three three employees for the longest time, and everything else was done by volunteers, so we know it can be done.
01:08:20.050 --> 01:08:32.970
Jeff Greenway: And so, as we move into the future, the the goal is not to be united Methods two. It's system, structure of theology or approach, but rather the Global Methodist Church which reclaims our historic Westland tradition.
01:08:32.979 --> 01:08:52.819
John Lowry: In fact, in fact, in our book we're very clear about that. This is not just a slightly cleaned up, culturally right version of the Umc: Wow! Really, this really is a church that reclaims foundational orthodox doctrine that that reinvests
01:08:57.670 --> 01:09:09.590
John Lowry: across that front. This is not a place to to retrench away from the world. This is a and this is a a place to embrace the world in a transforming way under the lordship of Christ.
01:09:09.600 --> 01:09:17.269
John Lowry: It it is, it is at at stake, a theological and faith issue.
01:09:17.380 --> 01:09:27.389
Andy Miller III: I have two more questions: one I like for you both to think about your Wesleyan sibling denominations,
01:09:27.399 --> 01:09:49.580
Andy Miller III: Savage Army, Nazarene Church, Pre Methodist, Westland, and and the like. All all of us who are a little bit and are definitely smaller, but are experiencing these same challenges. I'm. Not. Everyone's equal. I've already alluded to the challenges in the Established Army, and I think the Nazarene Church has similar things happening in there, particularly in their educational institutions.
01:09:49.590 --> 01:10:08.209
Andy Miller III: What is your advice to the Yeah. Other denominations who are are going through? What maybe what you was. That method of church was doing me and I Methods Church twenty thirty years ago. So Ah, Bishop, could you answer that first like? What's your advice to these other? And ah, Jeff, i'd love to get your take on that, too.
01:10:10.440 --> 01:10:11.889
John Lowry: Very additional
01:10:11.900 --> 01:10:13.669
John Lowry: boy. I you know
01:10:13.680 --> 01:10:29.459
John Lowry: that's a that's a big subject, but I but I think I think it. This starts with with just foundational kind of stuff. And for starters there is a battle that is going on for the mind and heart.
01:10:29.840 --> 01:10:33.869
John Lowry: Various church groups, denominations, if you will,
01:10:33.880 --> 01:10:52.389
John Lowry: and that a return, a return to what I call poor orthodoxy is, or genuine orthodoxy is is absolutely central. I think a part of that, and one of the very good trends that we are seeing today is a return to spiritual formation and a foundation built on the Holy Trinity.
01:10:52.400 --> 01:11:05.349
John Lowry: Yeah. So that one of my one of my cautions to other denominations that are a part of the Wesleyan family is, beware! Be aware of following
01:11:06.960 --> 01:11:10.579
John Lowry: a cultural accommodationist trend the
01:11:10.590 --> 01:11:19.160
John Lowry: yeah That that, however however kind that may seem, that is in the long run cruel.
01:11:21.430 --> 01:11:24.370
Andy Miller III: Thank you for that cautious word,
01:11:24.400 --> 01:11:27.690
Andy Miller III: Jeff. What do you say? The other Wetland denominations?
01:11:27.700 --> 01:11:31.590
Jeff Greenway: Well, first of all, i'm not nearly as well versed in that struggle
01:11:31.600 --> 01:11:53.250
Jeff Greenway: as ah as they are from the outside, looking at, I think the Westland Church has done the best job of all of them to try and and and and clearly definitively state this is who we are. I think I think the Mandatory Church is about ten to fifteen years behind where the United Methodist Church is honestly, and part of that is because the seminary issues.
01:11:53.460 --> 01:12:06.469
Jeff Greenway: Yeah, um. But um, I I Bishop Lowry's given a good word here. I you know the narrative out there is that if we don't learn how to accommodate, we're going to be on the wrong side of history, we're going to lose a generation.
01:12:06.480 --> 01:12:28.339
Jeff Greenway: Honestly, Andy, that's not what I'm experiencing. I'm experiencing God moving among a younger generation of people who really yearn for a holy life, who really yearn for the kind of transformation that God offers us in Christ. And I think a Wesley and construct is, is is a reasoning is a much more
01:12:28.350 --> 01:12:32.689
Jeff Greenway: a much more gracious expression than a neo-calvanus Construct the
01:12:32.700 --> 01:12:47.439
Jeff Greenway: and and I think ah! The so I I would really encourage them to ah carefully put their stakes in the ground be very clear about who they are without apology.
01:12:47.450 --> 01:12:54.990
Jeff Greenway: And when persons are not able to abide by that, use their polity to bring correction.
01:12:55.000 --> 01:12:55.980
01:12:56.060 --> 01:13:14.609
Jeff Greenway: yeah, You know, you use your polity and um and I and i'm watching, you know. I I I hope that some of the other smaller holiness denominations will take a cue from what the Westland Church clearly did at their last general Conference. I mean that
01:13:14.620 --> 01:13:21.290
Jeff Greenway: that was I don't know if you followed that or not. But they they! There were clear statements coming out of that this last spring.
01:13:21.300 --> 01:13:22.670
Jeff Greenway: They were helpful,
01:13:23.220 --> 01:13:34.090
Andy Miller III: I the polities there it is expression of art. It's. Yeah, it's a part of our theology. Let's make sure that we're incorporating, using it, I think, like, if the the functions are there, and that's what didn't happen.
01:13:34.100 --> 01:13:51.920
Jeff Greenway: What's terminal with terminal in many of our cases is what I call dysfunctional politeness, and several years ago I was I had a leadership. Consult that I was involved with that, and I had a board I was on, who came in and dramatically changed the culture of that place for good in in about a two hour
01:13:51.930 --> 01:14:02.310
Jeff Greenway: conversation, and I was amazed by what I saw, so I took him out for a piece of pie. I said, Hey, I need you to tell me what you just did, and i'll never forget this, he said.
01:14:02.400 --> 01:14:04.890
Jeff Greenway: Do you know what the problem is with you church people,
01:14:06.060 --> 01:14:16.379
Jeff Greenway: I said, Well, I can think of several. But why don't you tell me what you think? It is because i'm plundering the Egyptians here right? And and he said, Well, you're nice.
01:14:17.310 --> 01:14:19.150
Jeff Greenway: You're so nice
01:14:19.410 --> 01:14:26.989
Jeff Greenway: that you will put up with behaviors that are detrimental, and will cause the death of the thing you say you love the most,
01:14:27.000 --> 01:14:31.419
Jeff Greenway: when in really reality what you need to be is kind and honest,
01:14:31.430 --> 01:14:38.960
Jeff Greenway: and if you're kind and honest, and you be who you say, and you you are who you say you are, and you do what you say you will do.
01:14:39.170 --> 01:14:42.290
Jeff Greenway: That will be better for everybody in the long run,
01:14:42.300 --> 01:14:51.790
Jeff Greenway: and I I think dysfunctional politeness is the bane of the existence and the Evangelical Methodist movement, because we want to be light.
01:14:51.800 --> 01:14:53.290
Jeff Greenway: Yeah, sure. And
01:14:53.300 --> 01:14:58.360
Jeff Greenway: and I don't think Wesley was dysfunctioning polite one day in his life.
01:14:58.910 --> 01:15:02.910
Jeff Greenway: Not from what I've read now that didn't mean he was
01:15:02.920 --> 01:15:20.880
Jeff Greenway: rude or anything like that. But he was kind and honest. He this is the way it is, and I think I and one last piece is I would go back if they, if they have not done so in a long time. I did this. I've done this in the last two summers. I'll do it again next summer we preach through Wesley's standard sermons in the summer.
01:15:20.890 --> 01:15:26.840
Jeff Greenway: Okay, we refit them for today. But let me just tell you what they are powerful
01:15:27.290 --> 01:15:28.790
Jeff Greenway: and forgotten.
01:15:28.800 --> 01:15:29.670
01:15:29.820 --> 01:15:32.079
Andy Miller III: beautiful. What a great idea!
01:15:32.460 --> 01:16:01.459
Andy Miller III: I want to transition Now, just by my final question I ask people The name of my podcast is more to the story, because I want to get deeper into just like the talking points that people have about the Gmc. Of the Umc. And that that's exactly what they've done. And there's also theological side that there's more of the story than just being saved that we have the opportunity to experience god'ssectifying race in our life. But also I like to ask the question. Is there more to this story of Youtube of a bishop like? Is there something you like to do that you don't
01:16:01.470 --> 01:16:20.230
Andy Miller III: you wouldn't normally say like, Do you like the scuba dime, or something like that? What? What is I, Jeff? I know you're a big steelers, fan, but beyond that i'd love to love, to see. And look. You have my old quarterback, which I was glad to give them to you, Mitch Trabitsky so. But but, Bishop, is there more than a story of of you than what you normally get to say?
01:16:20.460 --> 01:16:30.589
John Lowry: Well, yeah, obviously, you can't see. I'll stand up here. Okay, this is I'm wearing my shirt that celebrates Chicago.
01:16:30.600 --> 01:16:39.190
John Lowry: Okay. So I grew up actually in northern Illinois, near Chicago. I had relatives in the city and that kind of stuff.
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John Lowry: Okay, the our Chicago Cup fan. But I think part of my own life one of the things that's very important to me in my life is Jolen and I have been blessed with two
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John Lowry: great kids, two great kids in law and four absolutely fabulous grandchildren. And so part of what part of what is going on in our life right now as a couple we just celebrated our forty sixth wedding anniversary is, we're ah trying to spend more time with grandchildren, the youngest of whom just turned five as I shared earlier, and the oldest is a wonderful granddaughter,
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John Lowry: started fourth grade. She's nine, so that that's part of the story for us.
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John Lowry: Ah, Jolen, kind of pushes on me because i'm failing retirement. I am a bishop emeritus united, which means I work with with, with the administration, and I work with a demon program.
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John Lowry: We have a cohort called Living the Historic Faith that that I find absolutely fascinating and wonderful.
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John Lowry: I think there is a recovery going on in the Christian movement
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John Lowry: of what it means to reclaim the insights of the early Christian church pre-constantine,
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John Lowry: and I think that's actually a work of God. I mean that
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John Lowry: that excites me. But but the other part of life is is just getting to spend more time with my wife and and Jason. Grandkids.
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John Lowry: Yeah, you know, Candidly wear me out,
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John Lowry: and then, of course, cheering for the Chicago cub.
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John Lowry: There you go. It's been a pretty grim year this year. Oh, I know it's not been an easy one, but i'm um on the My My parents were appointed somebody. Show me the North side to say, Oh, yeah, okay, I'm a big yeah, but I can. I'm still living off the fumes of two thousand and sixteen for sure, just
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Jeff Greenway: it only took a hundred years. So welcome to the party
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John Lowry: one hundred and eight, to be exact, whether I Oh, yeah, but who's counting?
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John Lowry: You know, Jeff, how about you?
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Jeff Greenway: I was you already alluded to? I'm. Ah, i'm an all-ing Pittsburgh sports fan, except for i'm not a not necessarily a panther fan. My dad was a pit fan. My mother was a West Virginia fan. My uncle played for Bobby about for Wvu. So when I was growing up and just starting to pay attention to that Penn state, was,
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Jeff Greenway: was it? And so I've been a Penn state, fan all my life. Um, you know. I'm. Uh I'm happily married to Beth. We've been married for uh for forty, one years. We have three adult kids, all of them love God. They're all engaged in church. We've got three in loves that we love
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Jeff Greenway: to death, and we've got eight grand kids under twelve,
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Jeff Greenway: and we spend as much time with them as we can. Last summer we had a cousin's camp at our house, and we had recovered from that for three weeks.
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Jeff Greenway: We didn't
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Jeff Greenway: um. I um. You know what, Andy I've had. I've I've had the privilege of doing a lot of things in my life and uh, but I've never really wanted to be anything other than a pastor of a local church that tribes and um i'm i'm grateful for the privilege of doing that. And uh, and probably the thing that you don't know about me when well you might. Social media is that whenever I get a chance I head to a trout stream with a fly ride. Um! Because people ask me why i'd fly fish.
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Jeff Greenway: The reason I fly fish is is, there are no ugly places to fly fish,
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Jeff Greenway: and the other reason I fly fish is because you can't think about anything else when you're doing it, or else you don't catch anything.
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Jeff Greenway: And so it it's a way for me to kind of disengage, so I spend usually two weeks in the Rockies, and I try to make a couple of trips to the North Georgia, a year to fish in a a stream that I have limited access to, and and that's enough. That that doesn't for me. But that's Ah, that's a lot of fun for me
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Jeff Greenway: so
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Andy Miller III: well, no of our prayers for you from us in Biblical Seminary, even my family just ah thankful for the work that so many of you are doing in pioneering this effort, which you know might go without a lot of recognition in your life. But now I believe, like this beautiful picture of multiplying Methodism, this, this image that exists of this
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Andy Miller III: version of the Christian faith.
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John Lowry: I have an opportunity to expand and grow, and to be bold is a simple for you, and there the bishop is holding it up. So thank you so much for checking this out. Those are you are listening to this? If you could like share a link to this, make a comment on Apple Podcast. That would be a big help to me. It makes us go further, and I hope this will be a good reason for people in the Church. God bless you all, thank you,
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John Lowry: Andy. Thank you so much. You've been so gracious. We really appreciate it.
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Jeff Greenway: Thanks, Andy. God bless you,