Petition and Resolutions results at the 2023 Upper New York Annual Conference
Discussions and voting for the petitions and resolutions brought to the 2023 Upper New York (UNY) Annual Conference session took place on June 3, 2023.
The Conference petitions can be found on pages 31-53 of the 2023 Pre-Conference Workbook except for UNYAC2023.11, which can be found in the updates to the Journal addendum page on the Conference website.
Of the 11 petitions, only four were voted on because time expired before the Conference body could vote on subsequent petitions. The results of the four peitions that were voted on are as follows.
UNYAC2023.1 - Supporting the Removal of Discriminatory Policies, supported with amendment
This petition asked that the Upper New York Annual Conference: 1. Supports and amplifies the queer delegates’ call to justice and empowerment for the LGBTQIA+ community throughout the Upper New York Annual Conference, within and beyond our local churches, districts, departments, centers, and committees. 2. Affirms the spirit of the abeyance or moratorium as proposed to the General Conference, as referenced above, until changes can be made in The United Methodist Book of Discipline. 3. Implores the Upper New York Annual Conference to not pursue, to hold in abeyance, or to resolve in a timely fashion through a process of just resolution any complaints against clergy regarding their sexual orientation, gender identity, or the officiating of weddings of LGBTQIA+ persons. 4. Aspires to become a United Methodist Church in which LGBTQIA+ people will be protected, affirmed, and empowered throughout our life, mission, and ministry together.
UNYAC2023.2 - In Support of Creating a U.S. Regional Conference, supported with editorial amendment
This petition requested that the Upper New York Annual Conference (UNY) supports the expressed intents of the Christmas Covenant and Connectional Table legislation, including the creation of Regional Conferences in Africa, Europe, the Philippines, and the U.S., respectively; and that the UNY recognizes and supports the leadership of our Central Conferences in the creation and furtherance of the Christmas Covenant as well the Connectional Table’s future visioning on behalf of our worldwide fellowship; and for the UNY Conference to urge the Council of 9 Bishops to expedite the process of voting on the constitutional amendments necessary to enact the Regional Conferences legislation, calling special sessions of Annual Conferences where necessary; and that in line with the intent of the non-disciplinary petition submitted by the Connectional Table, the Upper New York Annual Conference requests the Council of Bishops to immediately appoint a 20-25 member Interim Committee on Organization for a U.S. Regional Conference to develop and propose to the 2024 General Conference the structure and organization of a U.S. Regional Conference. In line with the Connectional Table’s legislation, this body would organize and plan for the establishment and functioning of a new United States Regional Conference comprising the five jurisdictions of the United States. Committee membership should have a minimum of three members of each U.S. jurisdiction, three Central Conference members and shall meet standards of racial and gender diversity. The Committee should recommend a structure for the U.S. Regional Conference including considerations such as its membership, committee structure, meeting time, agency, and function. Lastly, this petition called for the UNY Secretary to send copies of this resolution to all delegates to General and Jurisdictional Conferences, including alternates, to the Commission on the General Conference, and to the Council of Bishops.
UNYAC2023.3 - Supporting the Removal of Discriminatory Language, supported with editorial amendment
This petition called for the Upper New York Annual Conference to support the removal of all discriminatory policies and harmful language related to sexual orientation, and urges delegates to adopt the following petitions: petitions already submitted and that will be before the voting body of the next General Conference:
● Petition No: 20730-CB-¶161-G;
Entitled: Revised Social Principles-161 and 162
Summary: Removes the statement that affirms marriage as only between “one man and one woman.” Removes the statement that only affirms “heterosexual” marriage. Removes, “The UMC does not condone the practice of homosexuality and considers this practice incompatible with Christian teaching.”
● Petition No: 20177-FO-¶304.3
Entitled: A Simple Plan #3
Summary: Removes ¶304.3 which states, “self-avowed practicing homosexuals are not to be certified as candidates, ordained as ministers, or appointed to serve in The United Methodist Church.” Also removes the corresponding footnote stating that “self-avowed practicing homosexual is understood to mean that a person openly acknowledges to a bishop, district superintendent, district committee of ordained ministry, Board of Ordained Ministry, or clergy session that the person is a practicing homosexual; or is living in a same-sex marriage, domestic partnership or civil union, or is a person who publicly states she or he is a practicing homosexual.”
• Petition No: 20469-OM-¶341.6
Entitled: A Simple Plan #5
Summary: Removes ¶341.6, which states (under unauthorized conduct), “ceremonies that celebrate homosexual unions shall not be conducted by our ministers and shall not be conducted in our churches.”
● Petition No: 20181-FA-¶613-G
Entitled: A Fully Inclusive Way Forward-Part 6 of 8
Summary: Removes ¶613.19, which prohibits annual conferences from giving “United Methodist funds to any gay caucus or group, or otherwise use such funds to promote the acceptance of homosexuality... “
● Petition No: 20190-FA-¶806-G
Entitled: A Fully Inclusive Way Forward-Part 7 of 8 23
Summary: Removes ¶806.9, which tasks GCFA with “ensuring that no board, agency, committee, commission, or council gives United Methodist funds to any gay caucus or group ...”
● Petition No: 20304-HS-¶415.6-G
Entitled: Next Generation UMC #11—Amend Episcopal Responsibilities
Summary: Removes statements prohibiting bishops from commissioning, ordaining, or consecrating persons determined to be “self-avowed practicing homosexuals.”
● Petition No: 20387-JA-¶2711.3-G
Entitled: Next Generation UMC #22—Penalties
Summary: Removes predetermined, mandatory minimum penalties for clergy who officiate same sex weddings.
● Petition Number: 20365-JA-¶2702.1-G
Entitled: Next Generation UMC #21 - Chargeable Offenses
Summary: Removes chargeable offenses that target “self-avowed practicing homosexuals” and clergy who conduct same-sex weddings.
● Petition No: 20420-OM-¶310.2d-G
Entitled: A Simple Plan #4
Summary: Removes statements from Footnote 3 that repeat phrases being removed from other paragraphs in the BOD.
Lastly, this petition called for the Upper New York Annual Conference Secretary to send copies of this resolution to all General and Jurisdictional Conference delegates and alternates, the Commission on General Conference, and the Council of Bishops.
UNYAC2023.4 - Encouraging Leadership with Integrity, unsupported
This petition called for the Upper New York Annual Conference (UNY) to expresses respect and gratitude to those who have voluntarily stepped away from positions of leadership as they journey away from membership in The United Methodist Church. As we continue through this period of transition, It requested that the UNY call upon every United Methodist, as a disciple of Jesus the Christ, to move forward in fairness and with integrity. It called for UNY to ask all lay and clergy members who intend to disaffiliate from The United Methodist Church to recuse themselves from leadership roles in all areas of the church, including the local church, District, Conference, Jurisdictional, and General Church level committees, boards, agencies, delegations, and episcopal leaders. It encouraged the UNY Board of Trustees to develop codes of conduct to manage conflicts of interest that may arise around discussions of disaffiliation agreements.