Friday, September 01, 2006

A "Gay" Take on the Woodside Explusion

Church Dumped By Baptists For Ministering To Gays

by Newscenter Staff

September 1, 2006 - 3:00 pm ET

(Flint, Michigan) A Flint, Michigan church that opened its doors to gays and lesbians has been ordered out of the Baptist denomination.

Woodside Baptist Church - the oldest Baptist church in the region - began ministering to gays and lesbians five years ago.

Other Baptist churches in area denounced the move, and over the past five years the situation has grown progressively worse.

This week the North Region of the American Baptist Churches of Michigan voted to sever all ties with Woodside. The decision will be presented to the American Baptist USA Churches regional meeting next month for affirmation.

Pastor Deborah Kohler says the action was not unexpected. Still, she says that the Region is honoring Christ's teachings of loving one another without judgment.

Kohler said her 270 parishioners would like to remain part of the Baptist churches, but not at the expense of ending its open-door policy.

Meanwhile, in Oklahoma, a megachurch in Tulsa has voted to quit the Presbyterian Church U-S-A. over the denomination's the support for gay pastors.

The Kirk of the Hills Presbyterian Church, with just over three-thousand members voted 967-to-36 to leave.

The church elders had recommended the departure. Church members also accepted a recommendation to join the Evangelical Presbyterian Church which does not permit gay clergy.

© 2006

Why are all these churches (1) old as dirt, (2) tiny and (3) have female pastors? Your comments appreciated.

BTW, Dennis McFadden of is of the opinion (as I am) that Valley Forge will once again pass up a chance to do the right (that is correct, God-honoring and Biblically sound) thing.


Dennis E. McFadden said...

Glenn, based upon past behavior and denominational commitments (often enough expressed), we can KNOW for certain that the church (IFF it elects to do so) WILL be welcomed into any of several other regions. Rochester has been a happy home for congregations as far dispersed as California! And, the precedent is already in place. This is a no brainer for the region and for the GB.

Anonymous said...

1) Why are they old? Long established churches have a good grasp on gospel essentials -- decades, even centuries, of successful reaching out to invite every person into the all-encompassing grace of God.
2) Why tiny? They focus on quality of ministry, not on worldly standards that insist on more, more, more and bigger is better. They know that in small community, real relationship is possible and prioritized. They know the biblical truth that God prefers a faithful remnant to watered-down masses; that the 99 can be left hanging while God does everything to reach out to the one left alone; that mustards seeds rather than mega-churches are the biblical metaphor for how God chooses to work in the world.
3) Why women as pastors? Perhaps because women know what it is like to be shut out and denied opportunities to live into their full, God-given callings by people more focused on preserving their own prejudices and insecurities. Or maybe because these congregations, faithful enough to comprehend the broad, overarching, timeless themes of the gospel rather than obsessing over picayune, culture-bound, minor points, are also faithful enough to honor the reality that women were among Jesus' first followers; that they were the last at the cross and the first at the tomb; that, while the world has often turned away from the truth, Jesus always welcomed women and treated them as being fully human.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous makes a very weak argument on both tiny and women in ministry. Citing no biblical references but just grasping on to culturally accepted arguments. Tiny churches argue these points because they have no excuses. Acts alone points to a progressive growth and health. Its a total rationalization for not growing. Sorry, I can't swallow it.

Anonymous said...

Another question - Why do they almost all have multiple affiliations?

And why do the press reports which tend to be favorable to them also have multiple bone-head mistakes in terminology? Could it be that those reporters have no interest in accuracy? No care to understand Baptist structures and relationships?

<>< Ron Troup;

roy said...

hmmm... why old? tiny? female pastors?
are you actually meaning to imply that there is something inherently wrong in old? small? women in leadership positions?