Thursday, August 20, 2009

Full communion with UMC

Despite the obvious divisive issues, the Assembly has managed to spend the bulk of this week on issues that the delegates could agree on and smile about. Following malaria and braille/audio editions of worship materials, today the vote for full communion with UMC passed overwhemlingly today.

Of course, our musical heritage has always acknowledged the influence of John and Charles Wesley. The ELW includes 10 hymns with text written or at least translated by Charles, including "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" and "Jesus Christ is Risen Today."

When I read verse 5 of "Oh, for a Thousand Tongues to Sing" I had to wonder what took us so long to reach full communion. What could be more Lutheran than this text?

Look unto him, your savior own,
O fallen human race!
Look and be saved through faith alone,
Be justified by grace!

It's fantastic to recognize shared aspects of faith. Let us hope that the delegates and the church at large can carry that attitude forward through the rest of the week and beyond.

1 comment:

  1. The various branches of Protestantism bring intriguing perspectives to our spiritual lives, ones we can sometimes forget or dismiss. Each side has to remember who they are, and from where they come, when these associations are made. Despite the cautions here, full communion should probably be a goal of all Christian churches.