A United Methodist Church minister who is also dean of Yale Divinity School will face an ecclesiastical court for officiating his homosexual son's wedding in New York last year.
After the Rev. Dr. Thomas W. Ogletree officiated his son's gay wedding, Methodist leaders demanded he be charged with violating the UMC's ban on clergy performing same-sex marriages.
"I was inspired … I actually wasn't thinking of this as an act of civil disobedience or church disobedience. I was thinking of it as a response to my son," said Ogletree to the New York Times. "Sometimes, when what is officially the law is wrong, you try to get the law changed … But if you can't, you break it." more >>
A Florida Pastor who recently left the United Methodist Church has started up a new congregation at a beach bar so as to reach out to those uncomfortable with the traditional church setting.
Pastor Jack Kale oversaw the first prayer service for Central Waterside Church at Bimini Beach Bar in Hemingway on Sunday. The congregation is part of a megachurch based in Las Vegas. more >>
In keeping with a new sales transition announced last year, the United Methodist Publishing House has closed down the last of its Cokesbury bookstores.
Once found at several American seminaries and the occasional shopping center, the remaining six stores were shut down Saturday, three days ahead of the announced Tuesday deadline.
Amy Smith, CAO/associate to the president & publisher of UMPH, told The Christian Post that Cokesbury will continue via its website, call center, sales representatives, and increased presence at local events. more >>
The head of the global Anglican Communion released a statement expressing sadness over the death of Great Britain's first female prime minister.
"It was with sadness that I heard the news of the death of Baroness Thatcher and my prayers are with her son and daughter, her grandchildren, family and friends," said Archbishop of Canterbury the Rt. Rev. Justin Welby. "It is right that today we give thanks for a life devoted to public service, acknowledging also the faith that inspired and sustained her."
Baroness Margaret Thatcher died earlier this week at age 87 after a series of strokes. She served as prime minister from 1979 to 1990 and was known for her hard-hitting conservative politics, being dubbed "the Iron Lady" by a Soviet paper. After leaving office, Thatcher would become a baroness. more >>
Ocean Grove N.J., a one square mile town along the North Jersey seashore, is known for its state and national historic designation as having the largest aggregate of Victorian and early 20th century structures in America. Founded in 1869 during the holiness movement by a group of ministers and friends, its mission is to establish a permanent Christian camp meeting community with the purpose of providing opportunities for spiritual birth, growth, and renewal through worship, education, cultural, and recreational programs for persons of all ages in a Christian seaside setting.
While much has changed since its founding in 1869, much remains the same. The Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association, a Christian ministry organization, owns all of the land in Ocean Grove and leases it to homeowners and businesses for 99-year renewable terms. It's still a dry town and the beach is still closed on Sunday mornings. 114 tents, which are occupied from May to September, continue to frame the Great Auditorium just as they have done since 1869.
However, a drive through the town of historic Victorian homes reveals more than latticed rooftops and widow's peaks. On many homes hang blue flags with yellow equal signs, which indicate support for same-sex couples being allowed to have civil union ceremonies on Camp Meeting Association property, such as the boardwalk pavilion. Historically, the pavilion has been used for bible studies, church services, gospel choir performances, and weddings. more >>
As the Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the legality of Proposition 8 on Tuesday, large scale rallies were held outside their pillared structure for and against the measure.
While the pro-traditional marriage marchers had based their operations at the National Mall, the pro-gay marriage supporters were using the United Methodist Building, an edifice constructed next to the Supreme Court back in the 1920s.
The United Methodist Building's allowance of usage by groups supportive of gay rights in general and gay marriage in particular may be in violation of its denomination's rules. more >>