December 2, 2019

United Methodist pastor Anna Blaedel will not face a church trial for being a “self-avowed, practicing homo­sexual.” According to reports from United Methodist News Ser­vice, a date for Blaedel’s trial had been set when Blaedel instead re­quested an opportunity for a “just resolution”—a formal process within the church that focuses on “bringing healing to all parties.”

The resolution acknowledges the harm done not only to Blaedel but also to the rest of the LGBTQIA+ community within the church. It also states that Blaedel will be taking a voluntary personal leave of absence in order to discern “a livable future and alternatives to remaining a member of . . . the United Methodist Church.”

Speaking about the process to UMC media, Blaedel said their heart was broken open and that they had hoped more would be possible.

“This resolution is not just. None of this is OK,” they said. “I have not wanted to lose—nor be forced to leave—the denomination that has baptized, confirmed, called, commissioned, ordained, and appointed me. . . . That is not the truth I want to come to, but it has been, is being, revealed as true. . . . And the story is still being written. But. And. I am no longer willing to subject my body and soul and life to this particular violence.”

The Century reported in the Octo­ber 9 issue that Blaedel had been charged with being in violation of the UMC Book of Discipline and was ex­pected to face a church trial regarding their sexuality.