A Mississippi United Methodist Church recently voted to leave its denomination, in part, because of the denomination’s position on abortion.
In the past, the United Methodist Church has been affiliated with the pro-abortion group Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, and some of its pastors continue to support pro-abortion causes.
The denomination does not describe abortion as a sin, either. Its position statement describes abortion as a “complex” issue. It says: “Our belief in the sanctity of unborn human life makes us reluctant to approve abortion. But we are equally bound to respect the sacredness of the life and well-being of the mother and the unborn child.”
Concerns about abortion and other issues prompted the First United Methodist Church of Louisville to vote to leave the denomination Sunday in a 175-6 vote, The Clarion Ledger reports.
According to the report:
“While our church will no longer be a member of the United Methodist denomination, it will continue to be a Christ-centered church that is faithful to the Scriptures and the theology of (Methodism founder) John Wesley,” [the Rev. Mike] Childs said. “It will forever be a Methodist church but not a United Methodist church.” …
Several factors played into the Louisville church’s decision to leave, Childs said, but congregants largely felt the denomination had strayed from the teachings of the Bible and the United Methodist Book of Discipline.
Childs said their vote was a matter of conscience. He assured people that the church will remain a welcoming place, saying he serves a “very loving and welcoming congregation.” He also told the newspaper that the church must accept “the authority of the Scripture.”
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The United Methodist Church has not condemned the violence of abortion. However, in 2016, its national conference did make an encouraging move by voting to end its relationship with the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, a pro-abortion group.