My Church is going down hill.

What can I do from 200 miles away?

The church I grew up in, the church I would like to attend when I move back to my home town, is making some changes that several people don’t approve of. I’m getting all my info from my mother but now she doesn’t like talking to me about it because I ask to many questions that she doesn’t have answers for (plus a lot of related unpleasant history. The church is a hot button issue between us). I really don’t have much confidence in what she has to say anyway. So, who do I need to contact to get some answers? How do I go about digging for solutions without offending anyone?
First United Methodist Church

I don’t know as much about the Methodist church, having grown up Presbyterian, but are there deacons or elders or something that make decisions for the church and run the various committees and such? If you know one of them, you can call and voice your concerns.

However, and of course anybody else’s mileage may vary, the way I’ve seen people protest changes in churches is almost always to Leave or to Stay. It’s kinda like that unpleasant side of our message board.

The United Methodist church has a lot of hierarchy/ bureaucracy and you should be able to talk to people higher up in theorganization. Start with the chair of the church’s pastor-parish relations committee and/ or the pastor and a district superintendent.

The UMC does have some change naturally built into its system, with the itinerant rotation of pastors, and in general expects you to maintain your loyalty to the church as various pastors rotate through.

The Pastor-Parish Relations Committee evaluates pastors each year for “fit” within the congregation. I think that happens about this time of year, with changes usually made in June.

The Official Board (that’s its actual title) runs the local church, subject to the prerogatives of the Pastor, who is appointed by the Bishop. In general, while Bishops and their assistants, the District Superintendents, have the right to intervene in local acrimony, they exercise it about as often as the British monarch vetoes bills. The head of the Official Board is the man designated as the Lay Leader. You can find out his name from your mother or from the church itself, and get more information on the dispute and why it’s going on from him. Some DS’es will be ready, willing, and able to help you out with your concerns; others are King Log. (I am no longer Methodist chiefly due to the incompetence of a DS when my parents, my aunt, and myself were on the losing side of such a dispute, the pastor having an Edifice Complex.)


Pray tell, what’s an Edifice Complex?

But is there anything useful he can do?

Maybe he thought he was a building.

Or he fell in love with the building’s architect?