(RNS) United Methodists to debate allowing non-celibate gay clergy and same-sex marriage

Posted by Kendall Harmon

As nearly 1,000 delegates from across the world gather in Tampa, Fla., for the United Methodist Church's General Conference, gay and lesbian activists have printed pamphlets promoting their cause in five languages, including Portuguese and Swahili.

The UMC's global reach, stretching from the Philippines to Philadelphia, compels the multilingual lobbying. Nearly 40 percent of the delegates, who meet through May 4, live outside the United States, according to church leaders.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesMarriage & FamilyReligion & CultureSexuality--Civil Unions & Partnerships* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesMethodistSexuality Debate (Other denominations and faiths)* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral TheologyTheology: Salvation (Soteriology)Theology: Scripture

Posted April 26, 2012 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. Dan Crawford wrote:

Here we go again. The assault never ends.

April 26, 8:15 am | [comment link]
2. the roman wrote:

Like dominos.

April 26, 11:07 am | [comment link]
3. Milton wrote:

TEC to UMs: “Come on over - the bottom of the cliff is fine!”

April 26, 12:13 pm | [comment link]
4. dwstroudmd+ wrote:

Some realities the UMC should consider:

April 26, 3:46 pm | [comment link]
5. MichaelA wrote:

Yes, the UMC can choose this day whom they will serve.  They have several examples before them of what will happen if they are so foolish as to permit non-celibate gay clergy and same-sex blessings.  If they do choose decline and oblivion, then so be it. God will not be mocked and he will raise up his church in another place.

April 26, 8:57 pm | [comment link]
6. New Reformation Advocate wrote:

The encouraging thing is that the UMC is truly an international church, with some 40% of the delegates coming from outside the US.  Since the American portion of the UMC is steadily shrinking, and the African proportion is growing rapidly, that suggests that there is actually a real chance that the UMC will manage to avoid going over the cliff and self-destructing the way that TEC, the ELCA, and the PCUSA have done or are doing. 

There is a reasonable chance of that, I say, but that positive outcome depends entirely on the UMC actually hanging together and not breaking apart along national or ideological faultlines.  Alas, I suspect that the UMC won’t continue to hang together, but is likely to experience the same institutional “tearing of the fabric” at the deepest level that we’ve so sadly witnessed in Anglicanism.  For the ultimate reality is that the Methodists face the same underlying problem that all the (former) “mainline” denominations do, i.e., the fact that two mutually exclusive worldviews and two mutually exclusive gospels are trying to live together under the same roof.  And the grim fact is that “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”

David Handy+

April 27, 11:57 am | [comment link]
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