Many Voices

The task force for Many Voices invites everyone to attend the first workshop entitled “LGBT 101” on Monday, July 15 from 7 - 8:30 pm in the Great Hall. This introductory workshop will take participants through a general, but complete, understanding of human sexuality from a scientific, biological, and sociological perspectives. Presenters are staff from Cleveland’s LGBT Community Center.

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The Administrative Board has commissioned the Many Voices Task Force to develop a response to the recent decisions which came forth from the February 2019 UMC General Conference. At the General Conference, the UMC affirmed a policy which bans the ordaining of LGBTQ clergy and prohibits Methodist pastors from officiating at or hosting same-sex marriage ceremonies. 


Numerous members at Church of the Saviour have expressed concerns about what this means for our congregation, and what we might do in response. Our job is to educate the congregation on the issue and ongoing developments within the UMC, promote structured discussions on this topic within the congregation, and report back to the Administrative Board with recommendations.


In an attempt to understand what the congregation of Church of the Saviour is thinking and feeling about this issue, we have initiated a 3-step process which will take place over the next several weeks. The 3 steps are 1) Learning, 2) Listening, and 3) Sharing. This literature board is one of 4 ways that we are distributing relevant information to support our Learning. Feel free to take the literature found at church or visit www.cotsumc.org


Our goals are 1) to give everyone the opportunity to become more informed on the issues at hand; 2) to give everyone the opportunity to be heard; and 3) to capture and share what the body of Church of the Saviour is thinking and feeling about this issue in a factual and unbiased way. Please participate fully in this critical work, at this critical time in the life of our church.


Task Force Members: Rolf Bergman, Melinda Carter, Bok Chew, Diana Merriam, Shirley Moore, Mike Smith.  Jim Hickey is facilitating the task force work. Anita Culbertson and Brad Withers are facilitating the listening and sharing programs. If you have any questions about this work, please contact any of us.


LEARNING: We are sharing information on human sexuality, Scriptural points of view on human sexuality, the Traditional Plan as adopted at General Conference, and the Wesleyan quadrilateral. Information will be shared via panel discussions, the church website, literature bulletin boards, and in small group discussions.


Panel discussions and listening sessions open to the whole church are scheduled from 7 - 8:30 pm in the Great Hall, as follows:

July 15 Human Sexuality

July 22 Scriptural points of view on human sexuality

July 31 The Traditional Plan adopted at 2018 General Conference


August 6 Listening session #1

August 11 Listening session #2


Additional listening will be accomplished via a survey (to be distributed in mid August), and small groups (will take place between August 11 and August 30, details TBA).


The sharing phase will happen in mid-September. After all of this information is gathered, the task force will analyze it and provide a report to the church leadership and the congregation.


Click here for general information about the controversy as well as helpful links to a variety of sacred and secular resources related to this topic.


Click here for scriptural resources.