How do Mennonites handle gay people in their congregation? Depends on the church. This is the story of the Allegheny Mennonite Conference, as they debated what to do about Hyattsville Mennonite Church--let them back into the conference, remove them from it, or dissolve the conference altogether. Hyattsville had been previously disciplined for accepting gay and lesbian members, which they have been doing for decades. [more inside]
On Saturday, Scott Anderson became the first openly gay person to be ordained as a minister by the Presbyterian Church (USA), the nation's 10th-largest denomination. But the ceremony actually marked his second ordination, after he was forced to step down from the pulpit, under threat of blackmail, 20 years before. At the time, Anderson had donated his pastoral stole to the Shower of Stoles Project, including over 1000 items representing LGBT people of faith barred from the ministry. Saturday's ceremony also marked the first time that a donated object was returned to its owner. [more inside]
Remember Ted Haggard? In addition to a Denver pastor recently stepping down amid gay sex allegations, now a colleague of Haggard's at New Life Church has been dismissed for "one instance of consensual sexual contact with another unmarried adult several years ago." Whatever that means.
Irene Elizabeth Stroud, an associate pastor at the First United Methodist Church of Germantown in Philadelphia, was accused of flouting the church's ban on homosexual clergy.
In the first open trial for the Eastern Pennsylvania United Methodist Church Council in more than 50 years, the Rev. Irene Elizabeth Stroud was accused of violating church law by openly living with her partner in a committed relationship. Jurors were instructed that they had a duty to "hold a good pastor accountable to the standard with which we all live'' under the Methodist Book of Discipline. The jury voted 7-6 to withdraw Stroud's ministerial credentials at the First United Methodist Church of Germantown in Philadelphia. She was defrocked, so to speak. Laicized. Ostracized. Demonized.
I'm Totally and Utterly Gobsmacked Hmm... horses, sheep ... British gay people? Well, it's better than having entrail explode in your mouth, I guess.