Moving Forward

UPDATE 9/20/23

The Transition Team met this week for discussion on disaffiliation obligations that can be initiated now i.e., collection of documents related to disaffiliation, historical documents, insurance and obligations needing to be completed closer to or after the Annual Conference on Nov. 18th i.e. removal of materials with UMC cross and flame insignia, cease all use of materials containing “United Methodist”, payment of financial obligations.  Updates on the progress of assigned tasks is a regular part of Transition Team meetings.

MMUMC could not accomplish a number of these tasks without the help of our staff.  We are appreciative of their willingness to provide expertise and support to this project.   As you can imagine, this is also a challenging time for our staff as they walk alongside the church in the disaffiliation process.

In support of our staff at MMUMC, the SPRC recently made a decision, and announced to our staff, that despite budget shortfalls, there will not be staffing cuts over the next several months. This should provide our staff with the knowledge that their positions are secure for the remainder of the year as they continue to meet the expectations of their individual roles.

The Transition Team has had a number of volunteers offer to assist in fulfilling many of the disaffiliation obligations.  This is helpful and appreciated.  If others are interested, please respond to the transition team email below with your intention to volunteer.

In addition to the Wednesday Word, Moving Forward updates can be found on the main page of the MMUMC website, under the headings “Discernment” and then, “Moving Forward”.  Please feel free to continue to direct your questions or comments to –

UPDATE 9/14/23

This is the first of hopefully many notices going out to the McEachern UMC church body to keep you informed, particularly around what needs to be done as we plan for our future.

Many of us participated in the “Vote” on August 27th and might be wondering “What happens now?” or “What’s next?”. Over the upcoming weeks and months, it is our hope to answer those questions for you.

Before moving forward, let’s go back 2 weeks and get caught up.

A Church Conference was held at McEachern on August 27th for church members to decide on whether to disaffiliate from the UMC or to stay in the UMC. The results of the vote showed 69% favored disaffiliation, setting in motion the need to successfully complete specific disaffiliation requirements for a final approval by a called Annual Conference on November 18th, 2023.

Following the Church Conference, McEachern UMC held a Church Council meeting September 5th with the primary purpose of establishing a Transition Team to lead the church in fulfilling the requirements of disaffiliation.

Here is the motion presented and passed by Church Council.

In response to the August 27, 2023, McEachern Memorial Church Conference vote to disaffiliate from the United Methodist Church, I move that we form an independent Transition Committee of the individuals listed below. The Transition Committee is charged with performing all efforts necessary to comply with the requirements of the “Disaffiliation Agreement Pursuant to 2553” that was signed by the McEachern Memorial Board of Trustees on August 27, 2023. This committee will establish a corporation, bank accounts, and other instruments necessary to satisfy the requirements. Some Transition Committee efforts will require close coordination with the clergy and staff of McEachern Memorial to gather and copy information, audit property, and similar efforts. It is hoped and expected that full and timely cooperation will be provided by all.

The Transition Committee will be chaired by Joshua Orton and consist of Bob Wright, Donnie Newsom, and Jeff Lehman. The Transition Committee will organize additional subcommittees and volunteers as needed to complete its work.

(Derek Price was added as a member by an amendment to the motion)

This is the URL to the Disaffiliation Agreement highlighting the specific requirements –

The Transition Team met during the week of September 5th to assign responsibilities, set deadlines, progress checks, and support needed. Updates from the Transition Team will follow as we move through this process. If you have questions or comments, feel free to contact the team at