Friday, March 13, 2020

Recommended Reading: Christmas Covenant Legislation

The legislation from the Christmas Covenant group is now publicly available online.

As the subtitle for the legislative package indicates, this legislation is intended to create "An Equitable Structure of Global Regionalism." The eight petitions draw upon but go beyond the Connectional Table's proposal to create a US Regional Conference. The Christmas Covenant legislation also converts central conferences into regional conferences, thereby establishing parity across the world.

The legislation was developed primarily by United Methodist leaders outside of the United States, especially from the Philippines. The principles of the Christmas Covenant have been endorsed by leaders from the Philippines, multiple African countries, and Norway. The Philippines Annual Conference - Cavite voted last month to endorse the legislation and send it to General Conference. In so doing, PAC - Cavite linked the Christmas Covenant and the Protocol of Reconciliation and Grace through Separation together.

The Christmas Covenant proposal has also received support from within the United States. General Conference delegates from Florida and the Western Jurisdiction have indicated their intention to support it, in conjunction with the Protocol. The Inter-Ethnic Strategy and Development Group has asked that the Christmas Covenant be the first item of business to be considered by General Conference, to be followed by the Protocol.

The Christmas Covenant regionalization plan is thus one of the central proposals that will come before General Conference, and this legislation deserves to be closely read and carefully considered by all General Conference delegates.

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