What is the “Protocol”?

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, General Conference was delayed from May of 2020 to August and September of 2021. It was postponed again and then finally postponed until 2024. In the meantime, the new breakaway denomination, the Global Methodist Church, formed unilaterally. So the protocol no longer appears likely to pass. The Protocol for Reconciliation and Grace through Separation would have created a method for local churches (and even a few Annual Conferences en masse) to leave The United Methodist Church and form other Methodist denominations.

If you are interested in what the Protocol would have brought before us, an excellent video with a brief yet comprehensive explanation of the Protocol is found below. It is explained by Tom Berlin, one of the writers of the Protocol.

Stay UMC was originally founded to work actively against the idea of the North Alabama Conference voting to leave our denomination should the Protocol pass. Now that this is no longer a likely scenario, we have pivoted to become a messaging organization committed to strengthening the UMC in North Alabama, addressing myths and misinformation that continues to be spread by separatists, and joyfully moving forward in history.

Additionally, after the delay of General Conference until 2024, this video of Tom Berlin explained the delay and the ramifications of that delay.