On the persistent question of whether churches should tolerate same-sex intimacy by any of its ministers, opponents won a series of victories in May as United Methodists met in Pittsburgh. If anything, the second-largest U.S. Protestant denomination strengthened its resolve against ordaining openly gay ministers.
OtisCharles, an Episcopal bishop who came out as gay at age 67 in San Francisco after retiring as bishop of Utah, has been prohibited from adminstering sacraments by San Francisco–based Bishop WilliamE. Swing. The action was taken after Charles went against Swing’s decision and “married” a male partner of two years on April 24.
Withdrew last year from appointment as Anglican bishop
May 18, 2004
The issue of homosexuality has come back to haunt the Church of England with the appointment of avowedly gay Canon Jeffrey John as dean of the diocese of St. Albans—the same priest who was forced to withdraw last year from an appointment as a bishop.
The acquittal of a lesbian Methodist pastor charged with violating a church ban on “self-avowed practicing” gay clergy does not change church law, United Methodist bishops have cautioned members as the denomination prepares for its once-every-four-years convention late this month.
Book of Discipline uses "soft words" about homosexuality
Apr 06, 2004
The filing of charges against two Unitarian Universalist ministers who performed same-sex marriages in New York state has drawn mixed reaction from religious leaders. Ministers Kay Greenleaf of Poughkeepsie and Dawn Sangrey of Bedford Hills were charged with misdemeanor counts of “solemnizing marriages without licenses” for performing same-sex weddings for 13 couples March 6 in New Paltz.
Same-sex relationships tolerated among laity but not clergy
Mar 09, 2004
The Church of England’s governing General Synod has voiced strong support for greater acceptance of homosexuals, but the church’s official stance—of tolerating gay relationships among the laity but not among the clergy—remains unchanged.
Testimony, not advocacy, is my intent in this first foray into a subject about which church bodies argue: the “blessing of gay marriage/unions” and “ordination to clergy status” of men and women in committed homosexual partnerships. Let me separate the two. The “blessing” item is now part of presidential politics, a subject M.E.M.O never touches.
The Episcopal Church has seen a 7 percent drop in contributions from local dioceses since it voted last year to approve an openly gay bishop, but officials say it may be premature to link the two developments directly.
A minister in the Church of the Brethren whose ordination was invalidated because he is openly gay said he will leave the denomination and be ordained in the United Church of Christ. Matthew Smucker of Kalamazoo, Michigan, said he is “physically drained” by the controversy involved in being the first openly gay minister in the 135,000-member church.