Anything Goes: Part III

Posted on May 6, 2013

What started out as a marketing campaign morphed into something else, which could be part of the reason why the stereotype that United Methodists “believe anything” is still going strong (read Part I and Part II). “Open Hearts. Open Minds. Open Doors.” is not a faith statement but was intended to be a “strategy” to get people into our churches, and yet for many it was taken as something more. There were some who viewed this statement on “openness” as the confirmation of this stereotype. While the effectiveness of this campaign is debatable, I think it worth unpacking a little more.

| Open Hearts |

As Wesleyan Christians we are open to the presence of God’s prevenient grace in every individual’s heart…

…our hearts are open to the activity of the Holy Spirit

…our hearts are open to being perfected in love

…our hearts are open to connecting with others so that we might “give thine hand”

| Open Minds |

As Wesleyan Christians we are open to being in conversation with individuals from all backgrounds, beliefs, and perspectives…

…our minds are open to differing opinions while at the same time holding fast to Christianity’s foundational beliefs

…our minds are open to the truths that can be found in tradition, reason, and experience while at the same time holding scripture as authoritative

…our minds are open to being used as part of the faith journey, not disregarded, ignored, or “turned off”

| Open Doors |

As Wesleyan Christians we are open to God’s saving grace made freely available to all through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus…

…our doors are open to anyone and everyone

…our doors are open because of the grace that has been freely given which we, in turn, strive to freely give

…our doors are open to those seeking justice for the downtrodden, disenfranchised, and disregarded

…our doors are open to those seeking to spread a practical, scriptural holiness throughout our local communities and the world

Perhaps this is too long for a marketing campaign but it might help deal with a stereotype.