Bishop Arichea (Pre-)Responds

Posted by Bernard Rosario On 8:25 PM 8 comments



Three minutes after 6PM was the time registered to a message electronically mailed from Bishop Daniel Arichea in response to the email that I sent to him last night, February 19.
 
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 My dear Pastor Rosario,

Thanks for your email. I am sorry I have no time right now to send you a reply. But I will do so in due time. Rest assured that I respect your position. Also rest assured that I do abide by the Book of Discipline even though I may not be in agreement with what it says. 

There are times when this happens, and when you make a distinction between the provisions of law and your personal convictions. It is a very difficult position to be in, I assure you.

While I cannot give you an extended answer right now, let me just say that I have believed all along that sexual orientation should not be used as a way of evaluating people even in ministry.  Also, I have studied the issue of homosexuality both scientifically and biblically, and my position has come from serious grappling of the biblical and theological issues connected with the problem of sexual orientation.  And finally, I have met so many people who I believe have genuine calls to the ministry and who cannot serve in the UMC because of our rules, and so have to find the fulfilment of their ministry elsewhere. There are others who have to deny who they are in order to be faithful to their call to ministry.  

I will give you a more substantial answer when I have more time.

Thanks again for your desire to engage in this kind of dialogue.

God bless you richly in your ministry.

Bishop Arichea

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Though I would love if he, instead, bombarded me with his scientific, biblical, and theological serious grappling about sexual orientation, I was still grateful that he (pre-)responded. All we can do for now is to further wait and pray that bishop honors his word. My reply:
Thanks for responding to a nobody. I do understand how scarce time is for you. However, may those who wait with eagerness for your painstaking response not be disappointed. Also, I, personally, would love to hear my ten inquiries addressed.

Pastor Bernard 
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8 Response for the "Bishop Arichea (Pre-)Responds"

  1. Anonymous says:

    Bishop A, what do you mean when you say "deny who they are?" Does someone's sexuality define who they are?

  2. This is a crappy response. When a person accepts Christ as his personal Lord and Savior, he is a NEW CREATION. The old self is gone. If this bishop believes that he will allow God to tolerate the homosexuality that should have been obliterated by becoming a new creation, then he is, sorry for the term, NUTS!

    If he thinks it's okay to minister to people as an open homosexual, then let us welcome in the ecclesiastic presence of Sodom and Gomorrah! I pray that this Bishop be enlightened. Allowing gay people to minister in a fundamentalist church such as UMC will totally destroy the foundations of the church's view on holiness. And when unholy people start to become ministers, it's time to look for a new church. Do not allow this.

    Thank you Bernard for your passion on this matter.

    Jonathan Jay Daoana
    Asian Director
    Masters Commission

  3. Anonymous says:

    Hate the sin. Love the sinner.

    But that doesn't mean that for the sake of love, one condones or allows the sin so as to not hurt the sinner. In fact, love hurts. It hurts so much that Jesus had to die a excruciating death for the atonement our sins.

    The thing is, that love is the same love He had when He said and stated clearly from Old Testament to New Testament that homosexuality is a sin. He loves to give us fulfilling life, and part of it is the sanctity of gender and marriage.

    Don't get it wrong. Homosexuality is no bigger a sin than murder, stealing, lying, cheating, and sexual offense, and all sin should equally be condemned and avoided.

    The good news is that no matter how much we deviate from God's loving plan, God's grace is there to change us for the good and for good. Everyone who is in Christ is a new creation, the old sin-filled guilt-ridden man has passed, the new one has come.

    I could only hope, pray, and have faith that we in the United Methodist Church and in the Universal Church would put God and His free-given salvation through Jesus Christ alone as the center of everything we do, both as individuals and as congregation.

    Together, let us obey God and love doing so.

    Eufemio Agbayani III
    an everyday church-goer

  4. Anonymous says:

    This saddens me greatly--the UMC is probably the only remaining mainline denomination whose stand on homosexuality is Biblically sound. If in the 2012 General Conference they will remove the clauses prohibiting homosexuality, then the UMC's moral high-ground will be lost. We might as well welcome adulterous clergy candidates or allow bigamists to be ordained.

    Ptr. Hope Jordan D. Guerrero
    An Arminian with an unsheathed sword (and who is willing to use it, too!)

  5. Pastor Hope, there is hope. ^_^

    The UMC in Africa is growing rapidly, one million new members every year, while the liberal west is losing 60,000 to 70,000 members a year. The wording in the Discipline is most likely to stay.

    The problem lies on the deliberate violations of others despite the church law.

    Bernard

  6. The Biblical laws supersede the UMC's Book of Discipline. I'm not convicted by the latter one but by the Bible. I don't see no good reason why the good bishop can't SAY no when in fact we have to stand firm on Biblical grounds as the sole authority of our faith & ecclesiology.

  7. Anonymous says:

    This bishop knew his gender. Yet as he was given authority and as he practiced this authority to mingle with citizens of the world, was he convinced through orientation that there are more than two genders? Is he still sure of his own gender at his age?

    He can never say with Paul, "And my speech and my preaching [was] not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God."

    But he is one of those "Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away."

  8. We can just hope that the bishop is still reading even the most recent comments. But as we can see, it seems that he already has forgotten (deliberately?) his promise to address our questions.

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