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Thoughts on the Bard-Jones Plan

Sketch artist captures the plan of General Conference.

Rev. Chris Ritter says of the Bard-Jones Plan, “They want to end our impasse by providing a means of separation.”  

The Rev. Chris Ritter is the Directing Pastor of a multi-site ministry in The  Illinois Great Rivers Conference that includes Geneseo First and Cambridge United Methodist churches. He was a delegate to the 2016 and 2019 General Conferences of the UMC, and he is active in church vitality efforts.  Ritter helped write language that was included in the Connectional Conference Plan proposed by the Commission on A Way Forward. He sits on the Global Council of the Wesleyan Covenant Association. 

Chris Ritter blogs at, “People Need Jesus.” His July 11 post, “Thoughts on the Bard-Jones Plan,” addressed the “New Plan of Unity: a Way Forward Strategy,” proposed by Bishops David Bard and Scott Jones. He begins by naming the pair, “an odd couple.” Ritter then goes on to say, “What they share is realism and a strong motivation toward a comprehensive settlement of the divisions that bedevil the UMC.  Both have been willing to think outside the box of the current institution and this is something of a rarity for UM bishops.”

Ritter discusses the plan, the process, the problems, and the prospects. He concludes: “The Bard-Jones Plan seems an honest effort to provide a place for all United Methodists to find a connectionalism that fits.” 

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