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Postures & Statements

University Carillon Diversity Posture

University Carillon acknowledges…

  • Our rich orthodox Wesleyan Tradition that serves as a historical foundation to embrace the social implications of our personal and communal transformation by the power of the Gospel. We depend on the Holy Spirit to empower us to cultivate Christian love and demonstrate mutual care in word and deed to our neighbors inside and outside of the church.

 

  • God’s creation as expressed in the term Imago Dei, the Image of God, which began when He breathed life into humanity. This foundational truth holds us firmly to the conviction that every human being is immeasurably loved by God and therefore has inherent dignity and sacred worth.

 

  • That God has deliberately included a diversity of people in His creative work and redemptive plan to deliver humanity and restore all of creation marred by sin. By grace through faith in Jesus Christ all are welcomed into His family. Therefore, we affirm the image of this family that is cast in Scripture: a broad inclusion of people in heaven from every nation, tribe, people, and tongue. We also celebrate our similarities and differences, recognizing that unity without diversity is merely uniformity. Diversity serves as an essential element of the church’s faithful witness to a watching world and a foretaste of God’s coming kingdom.

 

  • That we are committed to being “a community sent to help anyone and everyone become a follower of Jesus.” We believe this vision bears proactive implications for how we live and how we care for our community and the world. This care intentionally and mindfully seeks to include and walk alongside people from all cultures, ethnicities, nationalities, ages, abilities, and socioeconomic statuses. Where injustice may exist, we will raise our consciences and voices for understanding, while prayerfully seeking the discernment and wisdom needed to pursue justice, demonstrate acts of mercy, and advocate for our fellow image bearers. When we fall short, we will pursue restored relationships with our neighbors, characterized by accountability, repentance, forgiveness, and grace for the glory of God and the sake of the world.

University Carillon Sexuality Statement

This statement is a response to one of the most common questions received by the pastors and leadership of the Church. To continue this conversation, we offer our shared theological understanding, so that there will be both clarity as to the position of University Carillon and, just as importantly, clarity as to posture we strive for in carrying our belief.

One of the great challenges in the conversation about how following Jesus ought to shape our sexual ethic is the deep, personal, and real pain that so many people carry into the conversation. The church has often erred in its posture as it engages the topic of sexuality, which has led to a spirit of shame and hostility. The great tragedy is that people have been turned off from the Church, not by Jesus, but by his followers. Because of the complexity and sensitivity of the conversation, we will briefly define our position, posture, and practice, as we believe all three to be of equal and vital importance.

Our position:

• We believe the historic Christian understanding of marriage. Specifically, that marriage was created by God to be a life-long covenant between two, sexually different persons (male and female), creating a sacred one-flesh union.
• We believe marriage to be the only appropriate setting for sexual conduct, and all sexual conduct outside of this covenant to be sin.
• We believe sexual brokenness affects us all. Therefore, we are committed to being a safe place of hospitality and healing that all may experience the redemptive grace of Jesus.

Our posture:

We look to Jesus as the perfect model of the posture of how we ought to hold our belief. While Jesus shared most of the theological beliefs of the Pharisees (zealous religious authorities), His problem was with their posture . Alternatively, throughout the Gospels, we see that those who lived lives in disagreement with Jesus’s ethical teachings were regularly drawn to him—accepting an invitation to His table, breaking bread with Him . As we learn from Jesus, agreement is not a prerequisite for acceptance. We strive to be the sort of church family where those living in ways contrary to the Way of Jesus —including, but certainly not limited to, sexuality—are seen, loved, accepted, and welcomed in our community.

Our practice:

University Carillon welcomes all into worship and community regardless of sexual practice or orientation . Because the Church is called the Body of Christ , we hold to all of His teaching and, like Jesus, open our arms to all regardless of belief—that anyone and everyone could become a follower of Jesus.

Our focus is to be the kind of church family that models a distinct counterculture : that, together, we would “walk in the way that leads to life. ” And as we continue to follow Jesus, we will pursue ways to walk alongside our wider culture; not offering unwanted critique, but an invitation into His family. Our mission is to be a church made up of people whose lives are so shaped by Jesus that it serves as an open invitation to all to follow Him .