The 2019GC is being held in the same arena where I saw North Carolina defeat Illinois in the 2005 NCAA basketball championship game. (For you Jayhawk fans, Coach Roy got his ring that night.) For me, basketball tends to be a difficult game to watch. My father coached the sport for 30 some years at Lincoln (NE) High School. Rarely, did I make it through one of his games without voicing an opinion or sitting in the same seat. Sometimes, I even had to leave the gym.
For me, watching the proceedings of this day unfold is like watching one of my dad’s games. I cared greatly about my dad, and my high school, and wanted the best. I have similar care for The United Methodist Church. As I listen to the speeches, I twist and turn, smile and moan. It is impossible for me to sit in a basketball arena and be sans opinion. Trust me, the people sitting nearby now know this.
So, what’s the score? Well, it’s that close. The last vote just taken was 409 to 409. But, earlier today the The Traditional Plan (which strengthens the church's punishment of homosexuality) passed with 56% of the vote. It moves on to a final vote tomorrow.
This afternoon, The One Church Plan is being discussed and will be voted upon. If it receives more than 50% of the vote, it too will move on to tomorrow. In a preliminary vote yesterday, the plan received slightly less than 49% of the vote. So, the plan, which will lessen the church's restrictions on homosexuality, may or may not move on. It’s that close. I may have to leave the arena.
Stepping outside during one of my dad’s games had its benefit. It gave me a new perspective. Especially, when I remembered my dad’s observation, “the sun always rises.” During his games, my dad always knew where I was sitting. (So, did everyone else in the gym.) He also knew when I left, it made him laugh. He knew my coming and going.
That someone knew my coming and going over what I deeply care about, I am thankful. Remembering so on this day, is good.
(PS….The vote was just taken: The One Church Plan was defeated. Tomorrow is another day, “the sun always rises.”)