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Keyword: umc

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  • Boy Scout Backlash? Organization May See Rapid Decline in Church Support Following Gay Leaders Vote

    08/02/2015 6:10:57 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 59 replies
    Christian Post ^ | 08/02/2015 | Michael Gryboski
    The Boy Scouts of America may experience a severe backlash from church sponsors following its recent vote to approve openly gay scout leaders. A national organization boasting over 2.6 million members, many of the BSA's more than 37,000 troops come from churches that officially state that homosexuality is a sin. These include the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, the United Methodist Church, and the Southern Baptist Convention. Roger S. Oldham, spokesman for the SBC, told The Christian Post that Southern Baptist churches have been cutting ties with the BSA since 2013, when the youth organization voted to allow...
  • Pennsylvania Congregation Pays UMC $100K to Leave Denomination Over Homosexuality Debate

    07/26/2015 6:09:01 PM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 20 replies
    Christian Post ^ | 07/26/2015 | Michael Gryboski
    A congregation in Pennsylvania has voted overwhelmingly to leave the United Methodist Church over the growing debate that the mainline denomination is having regarding its position on homosexuality. Wesley Church, a congregation in Quarryville that has an average weekly worship attendance of about 650, voted to leave the UMC after months of discernment. Chris Lenhart, associate pastor at Wesley Church, told The Christian Post that leadership for the congregation saw a "considerable chasm forming between what Wesley believed and affirmed about the nature of God's word and what the denomination believed and affirmed about the nature of God's Word. "The...
  • Gay Michigan pastor marries partner days after being forced to resign [UMC]

    07/19/2015 7:53:12 PM PDT · by markomalley · 97 replies
    Kalamazoo Gazette ^ | 7/19/15 | Emily Monacelli
    An openly gay United Methodist pastor said his "I Dos" in front of more than 30 clergy members and 100 guests Friday, days after he was forced to resign for having a partner.The Rev. Benjamin Hutchison married his partner, Monty Hutchison, in a ceremony on the steps of the historic Cass County Courthouse.Hutchison called it a joyous occasion."Walking around the courthouse and seeing all the support, seeing all clergy there gathered standing there saying that they support it, they're not opposed to it, it really was a blessing today."Hutchison, 31, resigned earlier this week from his position as senior pastor...
  • Mercury News editorial: United Methodist Church joins death with dignity movement

    07/06/2015 12:29:34 PM PDT · by DFG · 17 replies
    San Jose Mercury News ^ | 07/03/2015 | Mercury News Editorial
    The California Medical Association has withdrawn its opposition to the End of Life Option Act, SB 128. Disability rights advocates such as state Sen. Jim Beall voted for the bill in June after protections for the disabled were strengthened. And now the California-Pacific Conference of the United Methodist Church has come out in support of the law, similar to Oregon's, which would give Californians facing an imminent, excruciating death the right to end their lives peacefully if they choose. The Methodist conference joins other Protestant communities of faith representing 1.5 million members from 21 denominations in support of the law.

    07/05/2015 3:42:45 PM PDT · by NYer · 116 replies
    First Things ^ | July 4, 2015 | Matthew Schmitz
    One measure of the decline of mainline social justice activism can be found in a recent Facebook exchange between the Methodist civil rights leader Maxie Dunnam and the Methodist civil rights official Bill Mefford. Dunnam was a heroic opponent of Jim Crow as a young pastor in Mississippi and went on to become the president of Asbury Theological Seminary. He also happens to believe in the historic Christian understanding of marriage, so in response to Obergefell v. Hodges, he made the following post on his Facebook wall:To which Mefford, the “Director of Civil and Human Rights” for the United...
  • Economist Warns (UMC)Church is in Crisis

    06/02/2015 9:42:27 AM PDT · by xzins · 40 replies
    Good News ^ | May 26, 2015 | Good News
    In a presentation that he acknowledged is “sobering,” Dr. Donald House Sr. warned that The United Methodist Church has only 15 years to reverse its decline in the United States. This week’s presentation from House – a life-long United Methodist and trained economist – came to church leaders at the Connectional Table and General Council on Finance and Administration joint meeting held in Nashville, Tennessee. (See the UM News Service article for additional information.) “By 2030, the denomination in the United States will either have found a way to turn around, meaning it is growing, or its turnaround in the...
  • Minister justifies abortion by saying preborn babies have original sin

    06/01/2015 4:08:25 PM PDT · by Morgana · 60 replies ^ | may 31 2015 | sarah terzo
    Pro-choice Methodist minister John M Swomley who was the subject of a LifeNews article in May, attempts to refute the claim that preborn babies are “innocent.” The argument appeared in a book over a decade old, but it is so strange and disturbing that I’m writing about it now that it has come to my attention. The gist of Swomley’s argument is that preborn babies are not “innocent” as pro-lifers claim, but are actually guilty – guilty enough, he implies, to justify aborting them. Swomley first tries to refute the baby’s claim to innocence using theology: The first claim is...
  • Methodist Pastor Says Caring About Unborn Babies Who Die in Abortions is “Idolatry”

    05/18/2015 2:16:18 PM PDT · by Morgana · 42 replies
    life news ^ | Steven Ertelt | May 18, 2015
    The United Methodist Church has been a subject of controversy for years as it supports legalized abortion within the context of supposedly being a Christian denomination. Now, one pro-life advocate has uncovered a quote from a Methodist pastor who says that caring about unborn babies who die in abortions is “idolatry.” Sarah Terzo, who has a knack for documenting the history of the abortion debate and the abortion advocacy movement by posting quotes from pro-abortion activists through the years, posted a new quote today that features Minister John M Swomley. Swomley is an ordained United Methodist minister, Terzo explains and,...
  • United Methodist Church leader mocks March for Life, UMC issues response statement

    01/25/2015 3:13:56 PM PST · by Morgana · 53 replies ^ | Jan 25, 2015 | Susan Michelle
    Bill Mefford, Director of Civil and Human Rights at the UMC’s Washington office, used the March for Life last week to mock the event with a sign, and picture he posted on Twitter, saying “I march for sandwiches.” Many are upset a church leader used a solemn event to liken an unborn baby to a sandwich. The next day, UMC Rev. Dr. Susan Henry-Crowe General Secretary General Board of Church & Society, issued a statement about Mefford’s “march”: “Affirming human dignity is central to the witness of Jesus Christ. Christians are called to watch over with care the lives of...
  • Homosexuals File Complaint Against Minister for Not ‘Marrying’ Them

    11/19/2014 10:32:49 AM PST · by ilovesarah2012 · 96 replies ^ | November 19, 2014 | Heather Clark
    WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – Two homosexual men in North Carolina have filed a complaint against their United Methodist minister for refusing to “marry” them, stating that he has failed “to perform the work of the ministry.” Scott Chappell and Kenneth Barner, who attend Green Street United Methodist Church in Winson-Salem, filed the complaint with the Western North Carolina Office of the United Methodist Church late last month, charging their leader, Kelly Carpenter (male), with discrimination. “On October 26, 2014, we asked Carpenter to officiate at our wedding and he has refused to do so, citing church rules from the United Methodist...
  • United Methodist Church's Highest Court Reinstates Pastor Who Officiated Son's Gay Wedding

    10/29/2014 9:05:06 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 2 replies
    Christian Post ^ | 10/29/2014 | Michael Gryboski
    The United Methodist Church's highest court has decided to overturn the defrocking of a Pennsylvania pastor who officiated his son's same-sex wedding. The United Methodist Judicial Council has ruled that Frank Schaefer, formerly pastor at Zion United Methodist Church of Iona, Lebanon, could have his clergy credentials reinstated. A UMC spokesperson provided The Christian Post with a copy of the decision Monday morning, wherein the judicial council upheld the Northeastern Jurisdictional Committee on Appeals' decision overturning the defrocking of Schaefer. "The judicial council … finds there are no errors in the application of the church law and judicial decisions. The...
  • Will the True Prophet Please Stand Up?

    07/03/2014 5:27:25 AM PDT · by Gamecock · 7 replies
    The Aquila Report ^ | July 3, 2014 | Larry C. Roff
    Here in Schenectady, NY yesterday, First United Methodist Church hosted a guest preacher/lecturer who forfeited his ministerial credentials for performing a so-called same-sex marriage for his son and partner. His credentials have been reinstated and he is traveling around as a “prophet” calling people to follow the evolving culture. Well, call me a “prophet” who calls people to live in fidelity to the God who made us and knows best how we are designed to function. Here is the text of a letter to the editor which I have submitted to the local newspaper. Dear Editor: GLAAD for some …...
  • United Methodist Pastor Defrocked for Blessing Son's Gay Wedding Reinstated

    06/25/2014 3:48:54 PM PDT · by Faith Presses On · 20 replies
    The Christian Post ^ | 6/25/2014 | Michael Gryboski
    A United Methodist Church pastor defrocked for officiating his son's same-sex marriage had his clergy credentials reinstated by a church court on appeal. Frank Schaefer, a Pennsylvania pastor defrocked last December, was reinstated Tuesday courtesy a decision from the Northeastern Jurisdictional Committee on Appeals. In a statement following the decision, Schaefer called the appeals committee's decision "a hopeful sign for our LGBTQ community." "They recognized that I was wrongfully punished for standing with those who are discriminated against," said Schaefer immediately following the decision. "Today's decision shows that the church is moving toward love over legalism. It is the path...
  • Conservative United Methodists say divide over sexuality is `irreconcilable'

    05/31/2014 12:06:01 PM PDT · by Berlin_Freeper · 93 replies ^ | May. 30, 2014 | Tim Funk and Sarah Pulliam Bailey
    Will the United Methodist Church soon have to drop the “United” part of its name? A group of 80 pastors, including at least two from North Carolina, says the nation’s second-largest Protestant denomination faces a split because of an inability to resolve long-standing theological disputes about homosexuality and church doctrine. But more than lamenting the divisions, the pastors indicated there is little reason to think reconciliation – or even coexistence – could be found. Like a couple heading to divorce court, the pastors cited irreconcilable differences that can’t be mended.
  • Methodists drop church complaint against open lesbian

    05/08/2014 8:00:19 AM PDT · by fwdude · 77 replies ^ | May 7, 2014 | Charlie Butts
    A lesbian preacher in the United Methodist Church is being given a free ride. After a complaint was filed against Sara Thompson Tweedy of New York, the matter was considered and the case dismissed. There will be no prosecution. Rob Renfroe of Good News, an orthodox renewal United Methodist group, says there's no mistake about Thompson's lifestyle. "She's very up front that she that is married to another woman…" tells OneNewsNow. Renfroe describes her as a "proud, active, self-avowed lesbian."
  • Boy Scouts ban church that let gay man lead troop

    04/21/2014 12:26:22 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 29 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Apr 21, 2014 3:00 PM EDT | Phuong Le
    The Boy Scouts of America has revoked its charter agreement with a Seattle church that refused to remove a gay troop leader after the organization withdrew his membership. A Boy Scouts attorney told Rainier Beach United Methodist Church last week that it no longer could host troops under the Boy Scouts name. The church has stood by Geoff McGrath, 49, a Seattle software engineer and Eagle Scout, after his membership in the organization was revoked last month, setting off an impasse between the church and one of the country’s most popular youth organizations. …
  • UMC : Church Stands With Gay Scout Leader

    04/09/2014 5:17:48 AM PDT · by wonkowasright · 15 replies ^ | 4/8/2014 | Kathy L. Gilbert
    Rainier Beach United Methodist Church celebrated Scout Sunday April 6, days after news broke that the Boy Scouts of America said it was banning a volunteer Scout leader and church member because he is gay. The Rev. Monica Corsaro, pastor of Rainier Beach, said Geoffrey McGrath will continue to serve as the leader of the church's scouting program. “I am a chartering partner with BSA … . If I take responsibility for who is hired then I also take responsibility for who is fired. Our church is thriving and happy, and we support Geoffrey,” Corsaro said. McGrath, an Eagle Scout,...
  • United Methodist Bishop drops all charges..calls for end of “disciplining”..who perform gay weddings

    03/10/2014 12:24:11 PM PDT · by C19fan · 86 replies
    Patheos ^ | March 10, 2014 | John Shore
    Last October Dr. Thomas Ogletree (above), a clergyman in the United Methodist Church (UMC), performed the wedding ceremony for his gay son. UMC pastors are not supposed to marry gay couples, family members or otherwise. They’re instead supposed to believe what their Book of Discipline (which is to the UMC what, say, the Tax Code Book is to the IRS) tells them to believe, which is that “homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching.” ....................................................... So guess what happened this morning instead of the trial of Thomas Ogletree? The UMC bishop overseeing the trial dropped all charges against the pastor. And...
  • Caring for undocumented dialysis patients at UMC

    02/12/2014 11:22:23 AM PST · by moonshinner_09 · 25 replies
    KSNV ^ | 2/11 /2014 | Sandra Gonzalez
    LAS VEGAS (KSNV & MyNews3) -- As a county run hospital, University Medical Center cannot refuse treatment to anyone, regardless of their ability to pay. In December alone, 900 dialysis treatments were done on undocumented residents. They are uninsured, and the extensive treatment for their kidneys is not being paid for. UMC is treating more than 20 undocumented residents with dialysis every day in the emergency room, and they come twice a week. The process takes about four hours. "What you're doing is filtering all the blood in your body through an artificial kidney which is the dialysis, and so...
  • Methodists in crisis over gay marriage, church law

    02/09/2014 8:54:30 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 81 replies
    WRAL-TV / The Associated Press ^ | February 9, 2014 | Rachel Zoll
    The dispute among United Methodists over recognition of same-sex couples has lapsed into a doctrinal donnybrook, pitting clergy who are presiding at gay weddings in defiance of church law against proponents of traditional marriage who are trying to stop them. Since 2011, Methodist advocates for gay marriage have been recruiting clergy to openly officiate at same-sex ceremonies in protest of church policy. In response, theological conservatives have sought formal complaints against the defiant clergy, which could lead to church trials. One scholar has warned that Methodists are "retreating into our various camps" instead of seeking a resolution over an issue...
  • Church Nativity Scene Replaces Jesus with Bloody Trayvon Martin [Why Not Trayvon As Young Mohammed?]

    12/28/2013 11:33:49 AM PST · by Steelfish · 35 replies
    ABCNews ^ | December 28, 2013 | Russell Goldman
    Church Nativity Scene Replaces Jesus with Bloody Trayvon Martin By Russell Goldman Dec 28, 2013 HT trayvon nativity nt 131227 16x9 608 Church Nativity Scene Replaces Jesus with Bloody Trayvon Martin John Zachary created a Nativity scene for Claremont United Methodist Church that employs a figure of Trayvon Martin as a commentary on gun violence. (David Allen/Daily Bulletin) A California church sought to make people think about the repercussions of violence, by replacing the baby Jesus with a bloody sculpture of Trayvon Martin in a nativity scene. What they got instead were threats. The crèche outside the church Claremont United...
  • Pa. pastor defrocked over gay wedding offered job

    12/21/2013 7:30:17 PM PST · by Olog-hai · 20 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Dec 21, 2013 9:03 PM EST
    A United Methodist pastor from central Pennsylvania who was defrocked after officiating his son’s gay wedding was invited by a California Methodist bishop to serve in her region in yet another sign of a split in the nation’s largest mainline Protestant denomination. Frank Schaefer said he is deciding whether to accept the offer from Bishop Minerva G. Carcano to join the California-Pacific Annual Conference. The region includes California, Hawaii, and the Pacific Islands. “I’m actually leaning toward it right now, but I can’t make that decision myself because it involves my entire family,” Schaefer said. “We are considering it very,...
  • Jury Convicts Pa. Methodist Pastor for Gay Wedding

    11/18/2013 5:25:25 PM PST · by xzins · 51 replies
    AP ^ | November 18, 2013 | MICHAEL RUBINKAM
    <p>A United Methodist pastor was convicted Monday of breaking church law by officiating his son's same-sex wedding and could be defrocked after a high-profile trial that has rekindled debate over the denomination's policy on gay marriage.</p> <p>The Methodist church put the Rev. Frank Schaefer on trial in southeastern Pennsylvania, accusing him of breaking his pastoral vows by presiding over the 2007 ceremony in Massachusetts.</p>
  • Pa. Pastor facing church trial over gay marriage

    11/18/2013 3:24:56 AM PST · by SoFloFreeper · 52 replies ^ | 11/18/13 | Michael Rubinkam
    A Pennsylvania pastor charged under United Methodist law with officiating his son's same-sex marriage is scheduled to go on trial. The Rev. Frank Schaefer, 51, could be defrocked.... "Public opinion has changed very rapidly," said the pastor's son.... ...Schaefer could have avoided a trial if he had agreed never again to perform a same-gender wedding, but he declined because three of his four children are gay.
  • "Petition 18" - THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT - 2013 Conference of WNCCUMC (Methodists - NC)

    10/25/2013 8:27:32 AM PDT · by haffast · 7 replies
    The Western NC Conference of the UMC ^ | Submitted By: Mark Denton, Retired Clergy
    PROPOSAL: THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT (Petition 18) Whereas, The God of the Bible revealed through the prophets and incarnated in Jesus seeks wholeness and wellness for all his children; and Whereas, John Wesley advocated personally for the poor, and encouraged early Methodists to advocate for healthcare for the poor; and Whereas, The tradition of Methodism has always sought for justice for the poor; and Whereas, The Affordable Care Act passed by the United States Congress and signed by President Obama will help many, many poor people in the WNC Conference to receive medical care through Medicaid, which is a...
  • Controversy Ignites Over 'Jesus Had Two Dads' Church Sign

    09/22/2013 6:01:25 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 23 replies
    Christian Post ^ | 09/20/2013 | Jeff Schapiro
    A Tennessee pastor says he didn't intend to start a controversy when he put a message on his church's marquee last weekend that said, "Jesus had two dads and he turned out just fine." Many people have interpreted the message, which refers to God and Joseph, to be a statement about gay and lesbian parents. But Bill Campbell, pastor of St. John's United Methodist Church in Nashville, told CP that wasn't his intention. "For me it was a very simple statement affirming families and children who are in situations where they have multiple parents or there's a divorce or a...
  • Church: ‘Jesus had two dads’ sign causing buzz around town (Nashville, Methodist church)

    09/18/2013 9:06:57 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 38 replies
    CNN via KFOR, NBC 4, Oklahoma City ^ | 10:27 am, September 18, 2013 | KFOR-TV & K. Querry
    A sign in front of a church in Tennessee is causing quite a buzz in the community over its message. The sign at St. John’s United Methodist Church reads, “Jesus had two dads and he turned out just fine.” …
  • United Methodist Officials: “Clearly More to Be Done” to Promote Abortion

    07/19/2013 2:58:02 PM PDT · by NYer · 52 replies
    Life News ^ | July 19, 2013 | Rev. Paul Stallsworth
    Ms. Julie Taylor works in the office of Children, Youth and Family Advocacy of the United Methodist Women, and Ms. Amee Paparella is the new Director and Organizer for Women’s Advocacy at the General Board of church and Society of The United Methodist Church. On January 18, they posted their article, “Clearly More to Be Done,” on the General Board of Church and Society website.Co-written, their article serves as their personal response to the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade. But given their positions in denominational agencies, their article also functions like an official response of The United Methodist Church...
  • Transformation is Still Possible: The Closure of Exodus International

    07/03/2013 5:34:14 AM PDT · by mbarker12474 · 3 replies
    Good News Magazine & Transforming Congregations (United Methodist offshoots) ^ | 1 July 2013 | Karen Booth and Thomas A. Lambrecht
    Transformation is Still Possible: The Closure of Exodus International July 1, 2013 By Karen Booth and Thomas A. Lambrecht In mid-June, dramatic headlines announced that the president of Exodus International North America was issuing an apology to gay people and closing its doors. For those who have been supportive of the ministry of Exodus International, a 37-year-old umbrella organization for Christian ministry with individuals and families impacted by unwanted same-sex attraction, this headline was disappointing and misleading. As ministries working for the renewal of the The United Methodist Church, Transforming Congregations and Good News are saddened by the announcement...
  • National Cathedral Rings Bells to Cheer Gay Marriage

    06/26/2013 2:55:04 PM PDT · by SE Mom · 149 replies
    CBS ^ | June 26 2013
    WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) — The National Cathedral is pealing its church bells, along with some other Washington churches, to celebrate the Supreme Court’s decisions on gay marriage. Cathedral spokesman Richard Weinberg said the bells rang at noon Wednesday for 45 minutes to an hour. Bells also rang at other Episcopal, Methodist, Presbyterian, Unitarian and other Christian churches
  • Perspective: Why I sit out "God Bless America"

    06/05/2013 12:08:35 PM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 51 replies ^ | 06/02/2013 | JAMES P. MARSH JR.
    Special to The Washington Post I am a Methodist minister and a Washington Nationals fan. I was there on Opening Day in 2005 at old RFK Stadium in Washington, and I try my best to plan my summer around Nats home games. I have only one issue with the ballpark experience, and it’s not with the beer prices. It’s with “God Bless America.” In his May 15 column, Washington Post writer John Kelly described the odd feeling of not knowing whether to stand during the singing of this song in the middle of the seventh inning. Like Kelly, I don’t...
  • Area churches debate BSA decision on gay Scouts

    06/04/2013 8:23:34 AM PDT · by T-Bird45 · 59 replies
    Tulsa World ^ | 6/4/13 | Bill Sherman
    Tulsa’s largest United Methodist church is considering dropping its scouting program after the Boy Scouts of America decided to allow homosexual boys to participate. “We’re leaning in that direction. I don’t know exactly what we’ll do,” said the Rev. Tom Harrison, senior pastor of Asbury United Methodist Church, 6767 S. Mingo Road. The Boy Scouts’ decision can be troubling for troop-sponsoring churches whose denominations oppose the practice of homosexuality. The United Methodist Church, a major supporter of Boy Scouts, has maintained that the practice of homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching. “We find this to be a very troubling decision,”...
  • United Methodist Church Only Condemned Gosnell After Pro-Life Pressure

    05/31/2013 5:19:11 PM PDT · by Morgana · 26 replies
    Life News ^ | John Lomperis
    The D.C. lobby office of the United Methodist Church, the General Board of Church and Society (GBCS), has finally broken its silence about the “health care” offered by abortion and infanticide provider Kermit Gosnell. The GBCS likes to boast that it “has not been silent” on pressing issues of social concern. But when it comes to arguably the most pressing social-justice issue of our day, which according to the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute globally claims the lives of tens of millions of precious babies created in God’s image every year, the GBCS has been absolutely silent. Or rather, when it has...
  • Church Won’t Do Weddings For Straight Couples Until Same-Sex Marriage Is Legal

    03/18/2013 7:04:01 PM PDT · by massmike · 72 replies
    In a statement posted on the front page of their website, officials at the Green Street United Methodist Church said that they ask other churches to join in the movement to “refuse to sign any State marriage licenses until this right is granted to same- sex couples.” In the full version of their statement - publicly posted on their website – the church asks that services such as premarital counseling be offered to couples of all orientations, in addition to other couple-specific services.
  • Methodist Seminary Ponders Removing Cross from Chapel

    03/04/2013 5:59:01 AM PST · by Gamecock · 27 replies
    The Aquila Report ^ | Monday, March 4, 2013 | John Lomperis
    Actual title edited for space issues: United Methodist Seminary Ponders Removing Cross from Chapel To make the space more appropriate for Jain, Buddhist, and Islamic religious services After recently facing some financial challenges, the seminary decided to more or less literally sell itself for $50 million to a large donor who helped transform it from a Christian seminary into Claremont Lincoln University, devoted to jointly training Buddhist, Muslim, Christian, Jewish, and Jain clergy. In celebrating the move, Claremont President Jerry Campbell bizarrely declared that Christians who seek to obey Christ’s command to evangelize non-Christians have “an incorrect perception of what...
  • Protestants and Abortion

    02/02/2013 4:35:58 AM PST · by iowamark · 29 replies
    The American Spectator ^ | 1/31/2013 | Mark Tooley
    Southern Baptists have changed their mind about Roe. When will United Methodists join them? Last week about 100,000 or more marched in the annual March for Life in Washington, D.C. This year they commemorated 40 years since the 1973 Supreme Court decision constitutionalizing abortion on demand. Supporting the march and the pro-life cause were leaders of AmericaÂ’s two largest religious communions, the 68 million-member Roman Catholic Church and the 16 million-member Southern Baptist Convention. Meanwhile, agencies for the third largest, the United Methodist Church, crafted a news release virtually celebrating Roe v. Wade. But 40 years ago, both Southern Baptists...
  • Jewish groups pull out of interfaith dialogue over Protestants’ letter to Congress

    10/18/2012 10:00:34 AM PDT · by Alex Murphy · 14 replies
    St Louis Jewish Light ^ | October 17, 2012
    Jewish groups pulled out of an upcoming meeting with Protestant colleagues over a letter from Christian leaders to congressmen calling for a possible suspension of U.S. aid to Israel. “While we remain committed to continuing our dialogue and our collaboration on the many issues of common concern, the letter represents an escalation in activity that the Jewish participants feel precludes a business-as-usual approach,” stated a letter sent by seven Jewish groups to their Christian counterparts in canceling their participation in the Oct. 22 -23 meeting in New York. The event, an annual gathering, is known as the Christian-Jewish Roundtable and...
  • Why a Dallas UM pastor is observing the Muslim fast of Ramadan

    07/29/2012 6:19:54 PM PDT · by Morgana · 51 replies
    examiner ^ | 7.29.2012 | Dina Malki
    United Methodist Rev. Wess Magruder has not only decided to observe the Ramadan fast this year with his Muslim friends, blog about his experience, but break his fast with Muslims as well. Last night, Magruder accepted the invitation of a local Muslim to eat “iftar,” the fast-breaking meal at the McKinney Islamic Association. Having succeeded in fasting from sunrise till sunset for eight consecutive days, the pastor appreciated God's grace in this communal meal. Most importantly, this celebration reminded him of the main reason why he had decided to fast: neighborly love. Magruder writes on his blog how he has...
  • United Methodist Church affirms homosexuality ‘incompatible with Christian teaching’

    05/05/2012 3:26:01 PM PDT · by fwdude · 82 replies ^ | 05/05/12 | Ben Johnson
    AMPA, FLORIDA, May 7, 2012, ( – Members of the nation’s largest mainline Protestant church voted to maintain the doctrine that homosexual actions were “incompatible with Christian teaching” on Thursday. The United Methodist Church voted down two proposals to water down its stance on homosexuality on Thursday. One proposal called homosexuals “people of sacred worth” and acknowledged differing viewpoints on the issue, while another said humans did not know enough about human sexuality to prefer one lifestyle over another.
  • General Conference Update, Friday

    05/04/2012 2:15:27 PM PDT · by Bryanw92 · 11 replies
    Good News Magazine ^ | May 4, 2012 | Good News Magazine
    Pain and Protest For ten previous General Conferences (1972-2008), the issue of homosexuality has absorbed increased time and energy and caused deep division in the church. This General Conference was the tenth such time. Veterans of previous General Conferences come prepared for the drumbeats of protest, the rainbow stoles designating us vs. them, and the tears that accompany the vote of the General Conference. Although we do not agree with those who would change United Methodism's stance on homosexuality, we do not take their tears lightly. It is grevious that General Conference has become a place of such pain and...
  • Pastor charged with killing second wife now under investigation over death of the first 12 years ago

    02/01/2012 1:02:04 PM PST · by Cronos · 3 replies
    Daily Mail ^ | 1st February 2012 | Wil Longbottom
    A pastor charged with killing his second wife is now also being investigated for murdering his first wife, authorities have revealed. Arthur Schirmer, 63, former pastor of Reeders United Methodist Church in Jackson Township, Pennsylvania, is awaiting trial over the death of his second wife Betty Jean in July 2008. His first wife, Jewel Schirmer, died in Hershey Medical Center in April 1999 after apparently falling down the stairs and hitting her head ..In the death of his second wife, he said he was driving Betty to Pocono Medical Center on July 15, 2008, when she awoke complaining of jaw...
  • United Methodist bishops say they'll uphold ban on same-sex unions

    11/27/2011 6:32:47 PM PST · by massmike · 24 replies ^ | 11/27/2011 | n/a
    The United Methodist Church's Council of Bishops said in a Nov. 10 letter they would continue to uphold the denomination's ban on blessing same-sex unions. "As the Council of Bishops we will uphold the Book of Discipline as established by General Conference," the denominational assembly that meets every four years and is the church's highest policymaking body, said the letter, which was addressed to all Methodists. Paragraph 341.6 of the Book of Discipline says, "Ceremonies that celebrate homosexual unions shall not be conducted by our ministers and shall not be conducted in our churches." The book also calls homosexuality "incompatible...
  • United Methodist Future in Jeopardy, Say 400 UMC Clergy

    09/17/2011 7:09:35 PM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 39 replies
    Christian Post ^ | 09/17/2011 | Lillian Kwon
    Hundreds of United Methodist clergy are expressing deep concerns over a pledge made by a large group of fellow ministers to marry same-sex couples. They argue that if the pledge is carried through, the future of the denomination is in jeopardy. "We do not know how many, if any, marriages or 'holy unions' of same-sex couples will be performed by UM clergy in the near future," reads a letter, currently signed by more than 400 pastors, to the Council of Bishops. "But we do know the destructive effects that will result in our local churches and throughout the denomination if...
  • Churches debate whether to marry gays

    07/16/2011 10:15:51 AM PDT · by SmithL · 84 replies
    AP via SFGate ^ | 7/16/11 | RACHEL ZOLL, AP Religion Writer
    After same-sex marriage becomes legal here on July 24, gay priests with partners in the Episcopal Diocese of Long Island will head to the altar. They have to. Their bishop set a nine-month deadline for them to marry or stop living together. Next door, meanwhile, the Episcopal bishop of New York says he also expects gay clergy in committed relationships to wed "in due course." Still, this longtime supporter of gay rights says churches in his diocese are off limits for gay weddings until he receives clearer liturgical guidance from the national denomination. As more states legalize same-sex marriage, religious...
  • The Trial of Pastor Amy DeLong: Methodism and Same-Sex unions

    07/05/2011 11:11:48 PM PDT · by Cronos · 31 replies
    Time ^ | 1 July 2011 | Justin horwath
    The Rev. Amy DeLong, a Methodist pastor from Osceola, Wisconsin, decided to come clean. She brought to the attention of her local bishop that she had officiated over the same-sex union of a lesbian couple... She also told the bishop that she might as well be prosecuted for something else: she is in a lesbian partnership. And so, last week, DeLong, 44, faced a jury of church elders in Kaukauna, Wisconsin. At issue was whether she violated the Book of Discipline, which guides the church's teachings, by blessing the same sex union and for being a "self avowed, practicing...
  • 200 Methodist clergy in Illinois defy church on same-sex unions

    06/26/2011 2:59:58 PM PDT · by Cronos · 54 replies
    Chicago Tribune ^ | 26 6 2011 | Manya Brachear
    More than 200 United Methodist clergy in Illinois have pledged to flout church policy and bless unions for same-sex couples, putting their jobs, homes and callings in jeopardy if couples take advantage of their offer.Methodists in the Northern Illinois Conference also called on the global church to impose no more than a 24-hour suspension for clergy who defy the policy.Elders, deacons and pastors took their stand after civil unions in Illinois became legal this month. But they said their determination to support same-sex unions has been fueled further by a church trial last week in which a jury found a...
  • A pastor's calling to work for LGBT inclusion

    06/23/2011 11:51:17 PM PDT · by Cronos · 6 replies
    The Herald Sun ^ | 23 Jun 2011 | Jimmy Creech
    Jimmy Creech spent his career as an ordained United Methodist pastor until the church took his credentials away as punishment for conducting same sex commitment ceremonies in Omaha and Chapel Hill. He was not convicted at a trial in Nebraska in 1998, but he lost his church assignment and the stage was set for a second trial in 1999 after he officiated a ceremony at United Church of Chapel Hill. Since then he has been a leader of LGBT justice issues, retired to Raleigh and travels the country speaking. He also has written an account of the upheaval, "Adam's Gift:...
  • Lesbian minister to face peers in United Methodist Church trial

    06/20/2011 6:36:33 PM PDT · by Jean S · 12 replies
    Milwaukee Journal-Sentinal ^ | 6/20/11 | Annysa Johnson
    A Wisconsin minister who has openly defied her church's ban on practicing gay and lesbian clergy will face a jury of her peers beginning Tuesday in a first-of-its-kind trial by the United Methodist Church's Wisconsin Conference. The trial of the Rev. Amy DeLong of Osceola, at Peace United Methodist Church in Kaukauna, is expected to draw international attention and observers on both sides of the issue from around the country, a supporter said Monday. DeLong's defense is expected to argue that the church's ban violates the Christian tenet of inclusion. "One of the things we're trying to say is …...
  • Church Touts Homosexuality as a Gift, Not a Sin

    04/28/2011 5:55:29 AM PDT · by ZGuy · 428 replies
    Christian Post ^ | 4/27/11 | Eryn Sun
    Being gay is a gift from God, asserts one church in Ohio. That’s the message that Central United Methodist Church is spreading throughout their community via a digital billboard, launched on Monday. This “simple statement,” the church announced, is “intended to be a gift to those who have experienced hurt and discrimination because of their real or perceived sexual orientation.” “The Church seeks nothing less than the healing of the world, and Central UMC wants to offer words and acts of healing to those hurt and marginalized,” the website states. Jeff Buchanan, the director of Exodus Church Equipping & Student...
  • Tea Party Leader: ‘Karl Marx’ Methodist Church ‘Religious Arm of Socialism’

    12/20/2010 6:23:12 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 32 replies · 1+ views
    ChattahBox Political News ^ | December 20, 2010
    The founder of a leading tea party group is showing himself to be quite the bizarre extremist, shocking I know. Tea Party Nation founder Judson Phillips became worked up after seeing a banner supporting the DREAM Act on a Washington area Methodist Church. He promptly posted an anti-immigration screed on his website, wherein he said “My dream is the Methodist church goes out of business.” He then proceeded to paint the church as a breeding ground for “Karl Marx” Communists and socialists. If this makes no sense to you, join the club. “I have a DREAM. That is, no more...