FORT WAYNE, IN (Roto Reuters) A resolution on same-sex unions passed Monday at the United Church of Christ’s 25th annual General Synod meeting will be sure to cause rifts both locally and nationally.
The resolution advocates for policies that "do not discriminate against couples based on gender," and encourages member churches to support legislation giving equal rights to gay and lesbian couples who wish to marry. UCC member churches are independent entities and can choose whether to acknowledge same-sex unions at their respective congregations.
Despite the recent decision, members of Faith UCC have said they do not endorse same-sex unions.
This is not the first controversial decision made by the leadership of the UCC. The United Church of Christ has affirmed and re-affirmed since 1971 that access to safe and legal abortion is consistent with a woman’s right to follow the dictates of her own faith and beliefs in determining when and if she should have children, and has supported comprehensive sexuality education as one measure to prevent unwanted or unplanned pregnancies.
The final resolution passed on Monday was to drop the word Christ from the denominations names. Rev. Lee. Thomas, General Minister and President, said "We have just moved so far away from so-called traditional Christianity and were feeling just a bit uncomfortable being bound to Jesus’s words and actions in the Gospel and all that. So we decided to just drop the pretence and move on."
Some of the new names proposed and voted on were "United Church of Whatever Seems Good At This Moment of Time", "United Church of Secularists", "Not So United Church of Rapidly Shrinking Congregations" , with "United Church of Progressive Pagans" winning out. The UCPP has also dropped its motto "That they may be one" in favor of "That there be one individual and personal faith per member."
A committee was also set up to come up with a common paragraph reference system for sacred texts. Up to now there has been no common system for referring to articles in the New York Times other than by date, column title, and author. Possible new systems will be studied so the member interested in NYT exegesis will have a better system to better be able to refer to important articles amongst themselves. In addition Sunday reading will include a page one articles, something from the letters of Krugman, ending with a selection from the Gospel of Dowd.[Source]