United Methodist Regional Body Accused of Bullying Pastor for Supporting Traditional Marriage

Protesters for greater inclusivity in The United Methodist Church stand in silent vigil just outside the bar of the denomination's 2012 General Conference on May 3, 2012, in Tampa, Fla. | (Photo: UMNS/Mike DuBose)

A regional body of the United Methodist Church based in Georgia has been accused of bullying a pastor and her church over their support for traditional marriage.

Carole Hulslander, pastor at Still Waters UMC of Atlanta, has accused the UMC North Georgian Conference of removing her from her congregation over her decision to sign a statement calling for the denomination to maintain its views on homosexuality.

According to "The Erick Erickson Show" radio program, since expressing her support for the UMC to maintain a traditional definition of marriage, Hulslander found herself harassed by NGUMC leadership.

"The culture war has arrived at the door of Still Waters United Methodist Church. It's congregation, whether they like it or not, is being made to care," claimed the program.

The allegations laid against the NGUMC are that they're removing Hulslander from her position as pastor and even attempting to remove the Still Waters congregation from their building.

According to the Erickson program, two weeks before Easter Sunday the congregation was presented with a new pastor.

"The new pastor came in and began berating one of the members of the congregation. The new pastor demanded keys be handed over," claimed the radio program.

"When others intervened to calm the situation, the new pastor told the congregation to 'f--- off'. The lion that would separate the sheep from their shepherd now paces around the walls of this church."

A search of the North Georgia Conference's website showed that before the controversy Hulslander was part of the NGUMC's New Multicultural Church Development Committee.

For her part, on April 21 Hulslander created a page on GoFundMe calling on individuals to financially help Still Waters find a new facility.

"Still Waters Church is under attack! A multicultural, Bible-believing CHRISTIAN church and school under threat of losing our building from the liberal leadership in our own denomination," reads the page, in part.

"We have children and adults from around the world who have come to learn in an environment not hostile to GOD. We serve everyone including feeding, clothing and housing the homeless. We need a new building to carry on our mission for CHRIST."

As of Wednesday the GoFundMe page had garnered 94 donations totally nearly $5,000, with over 130 shares on Facebook.

According to the Book of Discipline, which is an important governing document for the UMC, homosexuality is "incompatible with Christian teaching."

The Discipline further defines marriage as between one man and one woman, bars clergy from performing same-sex weddings, and allows for homosexuals to be ordained provided they remain celibate.

Some UMC regional bodies, known as conferences, have passed resolutions denouncing the language and called for the Discipline to be amended so as to be more inclusive of homosexuality.

The Christian Post reached out multiple times over several days to the UMC North Georgia Conference for clarification on this matter, but they did not return comment.

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