November 15, 2012
31,000 United Methodist Clergy Won't Lose Tenure After All
UMC's highest court invalidates plan approved by denomination in May.
In a recent ruling, the highest court of the United Methodist Church (UMC) ruled against a plan to end tenure for the denomination's 31,000 ordained clergy.
The UMC Judicial Council overturned a proposal approved by church leadership in May that would have removed "employment guarantees" for clergy.
Current policies for the UMC, the world's largest mainline denomination, "give each ordained pastor a place to preach until mandatory retirement at age 72." Supporters of the proposed plan argued that the new policies would allow churches to remove ineffective bishops.
But according to the Dallas Star, the Judicial Council "ruled that, while the regional body had the right to involuntarily retire a bishop, the procedures it created for the process did not meet UMC standards."
According to the ruling, the policy changes approved in May are "null, void, and of no effect."
CT recently discussed the issue of job security for pastors after the UMC General Conference vote in May.