A drive-thru prayer service has popped up near Atlanta. But volunteers at Snellville United Methodist Church say it’s not just for convenience, it’s for the connection as well.
Drivers sitting in rush hour traffic along busy Highway 78 can pull in for a quick prayer and a little stress relief. Iris Green, a volunteer for Drive-thru Prayer, said on a video for the project: “A lot of people, through their busy life, don’t take time to pray. Or sometimes they might feel that their prayer is not heard and if they can get someone to pray for them and with them, that kind of encourages them.”
Volunteers for the service stand out in front of the church waving a small red flag with signs that read: “Drive Thru Prayer Today.” Cars can drive up to the church underpass and volunteers will take prayer requests and pray with them through their car window – in true drive-thru fashion. more >>
As the Occupy Wall Street Movement continues to demonstrate in major cities across the world, an increasing number of United Methodist Church members are joining the cause.
Methodism’s involvement in the protests is seen with churches in states like New York and California encouraging parishioners, as well as Facebook groups like “Methodists @ OWS.”
“The United Methodist church has no official position about the Occupy movement. However, there are a growing number of United Methodists taking part,” Jim Winkler, general secretary of the United Methodist General Board of Church and Society told The Christian Post. more >>
Hundreds of United Methodist clergy are expressing deep concerns over a pledge made by a large group of fellow ministers to marry same-sex couples. They argue that if the pledge is carried through, the future of the denomination is in jeopardy.
"We do not know how many, if any, marriages or 'holy unions' of same-sex couples will be performed by UM clergy in the near future," reads a letter, currently signed by more than 400 pastors, to the Council of Bishops. "But we do know the destructive effects that will result in our local churches and throughout the denomination if such services are performed by UM pastors."
The concerned clergy are referring to a pledge that some 900 ministers have endorsed in support of same-sex civil unions. By signing the pledge, they agreed to defy the denomination's ban on blessing same-sex unions. more >>
More than 200 clergy joined a growing list of United Methodist ministers in pledging to support same-sex civil unions despite any possible repercussions from the church.
After civil unions were officially made legal in the state of Illinois on the first of June, 208 members of the clergy belonging to The United Methodist Church there have signed a pledge stating that they will oversee same-sex civil unions, the Chicago Tribune reports.
The Northern Illinois Conference for the United Methodists has consisted of major supporters of gay rights for some time. Earlier in June, the conference took an initial vote to end discrimination against same-sex couples, and they plan on petitioning the denomination's next global gathering in 2012. They now stand alongside clergy from the New England region, New York, and Minnesota who have taken similar action, according to the Huffington Post. more >>
A lesbian minister was suspended from her church duties Thursday and ordered to spend the next 20 days as a time for spiritual discernment. A jury of 13 United Methodist clergy convicted the Rev. Amy DeLong on a charge of performing a same-sex union, which is in violation of church law.
The jury voted 9-4 to suspend the pastor beginning in July. The same jury Wednesday found DeLong not guilty in a unanimous decision of the charge of being a “self-avowed practicing homosexual.”
Her conviction on the same-sex union violation came on a 12-1 vote. more >>
A jury of 13 Wisconsin ordained elders convicted a lesbian minister of performing a September 2009 same-sex wedding for a lesbian couple despite a United Methodist Church ban on the practice.
However, the jury acquitted the Rev. Amy DeLong on a second charge of being a “self-avowed practicing homosexual.” The vote was 12-1.
The United Methodist Church permits gay and lesbian ministers to serve as long as they remain celibate. The church does not permit clergy to perform same-sex marriage rituals. more >>