A group of Lutherans upset over the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s recent decision to allow qualified noncelibate gays to serve as clergy voted to create a freestanding synod and to study for a year whether to leave the denomination.
United Methodists in the U.S. have defeated amendments that would have made church membership open to all Christians regardless of sexual orientation and that would have moved toward allowing the U.S. church to address issues independent of the global United Methodist body.
I once heard a preacher say that it might have been crowded and a little smelly inside Noah’s ark, but the folks inside knew it was better to be on board than not.
The same thing goes for living together in the church. Traveling together isn’t always easy, but the ark saves us from drowning. And it does more than that—it gives us a space where we can learn to live together.
India’s Supreme Court agreed July 9 to hear an appeal of a lower-court decision that decriminalized homosexuality after a yoga guru said the right to privacy does not “include the right to enjoy deviant sexual preferences and sexual behavior.”
In what is almost an every-four-years ritual, the United Methodist Church has upheld traditional rules on homosexuality, refusing to support or celebrate same-sex unions and maintaining language that calls homosexual activity “incompatible with Christian teaching.”
The opening in July 1998 of the 13th Lambeth Conference of 800 bishops of the Anglican Communion was an exuberant celebration of multiculturalism, a Eucharist of rejoicing in the many tongues and the crackling fire of a new Pentecost.
In a church election watched closely, Jeffrey Lee, a Midwest native and rector of a church in Medina, Washington, was picked on the second ballot November 10 to be the next Episcopal bishop of Chicago. Lee won over seven other candidates, including Tracey Lind, the openly lesbian dean of Trinity Cathedral in Cleveland.
A high-level Anglican committee based in Great Britain has reported that the Episcopal Church’s bishops who met last month in New Orleans “clarified all outstanding questions” regarding its controversial stances on homosexual issues. But 11 bishops in the Council of African Anglican Provinces, in a special meeting October 2-5 in Mauritius, said the assurances by U.S.
A new study suggesting that religiously motivated conversion from homosexual orientation is possible and not harmful has been hailed by social conservatives, but others are questioning the study’s methodology and the motive behind it.
A. M. Stroud III, a former prosecutor in Louisiana, expresses regret for the role he played in sending Glenn Ford to death row in 1984. “I was 33 years old. I was arrogant, judgmental, narcissistic and very full of myself. I was not as interested in justice as I was in winning.” Stroud says he presented dubious evidence from a forensic pathologist, precluded black jurors from the trial (Ford, since exonerated, is black), and ignored the fact that the appointed defense attorney had never before tried a criminal or capital case. “I . . . hope that providence will have more mercy for me than I showed Glenn Ford,” Stroud said in a letter to the editor of the Times of Shreveport. “But, I’m also sobered by the realization that I certainly am not deserving of it” (ABA Journal, March 25).