United Methodists Allow LGBTQ Clergymen In Historic Vote: REPORT

(REUTERS/Rick Wilking)

Ilan Hulkower Contributor
Font Size:

United Methodists repealed their church’s ban on LGBTQ clergy in a landslide 692 votes for and 51 votes against at their General Conference Wednesday with no debate, The Associated Press (AP) reported.

The repeal removed the church’s rule that expressly forbade “self-avowed practicing homosexuals” from becoming ordained or appointed as ministers, The AP reported. The vote also reportedly repealed a ban on same-sex marriages, allowing clergymen to perform LGBTQ wedding ceremonies without repercussions. (RELATED: Female Pastors Face Church Trial After Marrying Nonbinary Couple)

The repeal by the chamber was followed by a loud round of applause and one member saying “Thanks be to God,” The AP noted. The news, however, is not unanimously heralded by members of the church. One pastor, who wishes to remain anonymous because of the sensitivity of the situation, told Daily Caller he lamented the decision.

“I’m heartbroken that the denomination I grew up in has splintered … As for my congregation and I, we will continue to be faithful to God, to scripture, and to the tradition which has been handed down to us,” the pastor told the Caller.

The pastor claimed that the church has been debating “same-sex ministries” from the beginning of its foundation in 1968 and that many people the pastor considered to be “mentors” lied to him about the situation.

“The votes that have happened so far only remove punishments and supporting language for traditional stances on human sexuality, but the votes remaining next week will be aimed at removing traditional language altogether,” the pastor told the Caller.

The rule changes by the General Conference mainly apply to the United States chapters of the United Methodist Church, while bodies in other regions still impose their own rules, The AP noted.

A quarter of Methodist congregations split off from the church in December 2023 over this issue, potentially previewing the shift toward a more politically progressive outlook, USA Today reported. Approximately 150 of those dissatisfied congregations were centered in Texas alone, the Texas Tribune noted.