A Just Resolution has been reached
Prior to his retirement, Bishop Goodpaster, Rev. Dr. Val Rosenquist, and the Counsel for the Church that had been appointed by Bishop Goodpaster reached a Just Resolution in response to formal complaints filed against Rev. Dr. Valerie Rosenquist that date back to a same-sex wedding performed at First United Methodist Church in Charlotte on April 23, 2016.
Once the complaints were received, Bishop Goodpaster responded following the process outlined in paragraph 363 of The 2012 Book of Discipline. According to The Discipline, those proceedings were confidential. After initial an impasse, Bishop Goodpaster appointed Counsel for the Church to prepare a complaint for referral to the Committee on Investigations and possible church trial.
However, subsequently, on August 30, 2016, a Just Resolution was reached. The Discipline defines a just resolution as “one that focuses on repairing any harm to people and communities, achieving real accountability by making things right in so far as possible and bringing healing to all the parties.” (¶2701.5). Such a resolution is the goal anytime a pastor violates the sacred trust of ordination and membership in an annual conference “in the hope that God’s work of justice, reconciliation and healing may be realized in the body of Christ.” (¶363.1). A just resolution may be reached at anytime during the disciplinary process, and due to the procedural posture of this particular matter, the Bishop and appointed Counsel for the Church and not the original complainants had the sole authority on behalf of the Conference to reach a just resolution with Rev. Dr. Rosenquist.
As part of the just resolution, the parties have agreed that the terms and conditions shall remain confidential as allowed by the Discipline (¶2701.5).
For clarity, for purposes of judicial process, the provisions of the Discipline in effect at the time a matter is referred to Counsel for the Church shall govern the process. In this particular matter, the provisions of the 2012 Discipline (as interpreted by the Judicial Counsel) governed process.
Resources for Vital Congregations
Lewis Center for Church Leadership
Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Books
Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Serve Your Neighbor
GBHEM Leadership Resources
Living Faithfully: Human Sexuality and the United Methodist Church
Englewood Book Review
Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations
Ted Talks: The Golden Circle
Ted Talks: The Power of Vulnerability
Ted Talks: The Price of Invulnerability
Meditations on the Ministry of All Christians
Be A Disciple
A Disciple’s Path; A Guide for United Methodist
Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Adult Christian Studies from the Wesley Ministry Network
Traveling Together: A Guide for Disciple Forming Congregations
Living As United Methodist Christians
Methodist Doctrine: The Essentials
Reclaiming our Wesleyan Tradition: John Wesley’s Sermons for Today
John Wesley Sermons: Anthology
Get Their Name
Evangelism & Theology in the Wesleyan Spirit
Canoeing the Mountains
Fresh Expressions: Dinner Church
Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Reach New Disciples
Lewis Center for Church Leadership: 50 Ways to Reach People
Community: The Structure of Belonging
RESOURCES TO CONNECT WITH THE COMMUNITY:
Institute for Emerging Issues
Congregations 4 Children
The Royce and Jane Reynolds Ministry Fund Grants
The Duke Endowment
The Appalachian District Church Vitality Team has been prayerfully seeking ways to help support you and the ministries of your local congregation during this COVID-19 pandemic. Together they have diligently researched and connected with others throughout the conference and our denomination to identify resources and offer them to you. We hope they will be helpful to you and bless you greatly in leading your churches and communities through this unprecedented time. We are very grateful to the District Vitality Team and other contributors for their great work on this resource.
This faithful team has created three documents, two of which you are receiving today. They include:
- Family Home Worship – designed to help families establish a regular worship space within their homes as well as a time where they can worship together.
- Tech Strategies – to help guide you in selecting effective tools and resources within your budget to best communicate in the digital world.
We believe these resources will be of great benefit to you. Also know that the District Vitality Team is available to answer any questions you might have in regards to the documents attached. If you have questions, you may email Rev. Howard Fleming at firstname.lastname@example.org.