April 28, 2017
Earlier today the Judicial Council of The United Methodist Church released its decision on the declaratory ruling that the South Central Jurisdiction when Bishop Karen Oliveto was nominated, elected, consecrated and assigned as a bishop of the church last July. The Judicial Council determined that it did not have jurisdiction over her nomination, election, or assignment, but did have jurisdiction over the matter of her consecration to the office of bishop of the church.
While Bishop Oliveto remains a bishop, her ministerial office by ruling of the Judicial Council now comes under review through processes defined by our United Methodist Book of Discipline. The Judicial Council was not of one mind on its decision. I encourage you to prayerfully read the entire Judicial Council Decision No. 1341. (CLICK HERE TO READ DECISION No. 1341)
The Judicial Council Decision has brought further pain and grief to some while others claim it as a decision of clarity. I would ask that we pray for Bishop Oliveto and her family in this difficult moment, and that we continue to pray for our United Methodist Church. We know that we serve Christ Jesus who loves all of us and calls us to live in love for one another.
Take time in your congregation to study scripture, consider our Wesleyan theology, and our commitment to being a connectional church in light of the Judicial Council’s decision. Ask what this moment means to you, to your congregation, your community and our United Methodist Church. More importantly, ask the Holy Spirit to help us discern the will of God. Then, let us be faithful to God, faithful to the One who is Lord of our lives, and to the leading of the Holy Spirit.
Your Sister in Christ,
Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño