Methodist Church attacks terms ‘husband’ and ‘wife’

Wesley’s Church repents of “any hurtful language”

The latest edition of the Methodist Church’s “Inclusive Language Guide” advises Methodists to avoid using gendered terms such as “husband” and “wife”.

The Church justifies the guidance on the basis that these terms “may sound inoffensive but it makes assumptions about a family or personal life that is not the reality for many people”.

When The Christian Post asked for comment, a Methodist spokesperson said the Church is “very proud” of the guidance “to repent of any hurtful language”.

“They even affirmed ‘informal cohabitation’ as equivalent to marriage”

The Methodist Church’s new London headquarters in Tavistock Place
The Methodist Church’s new London headquarters in Tavistock Place, which they plan to move into this year

One of the Methodist denomination’s founders was revivalist Charles Wesley. Two centuries later, his Church’s Guide suggests using “partner” as an alternative to husband/wife, and recommends “sensitive and inclusive” language for a whole range of minorities, including LGBT+ people, and using the pronouns that people prefer. It even warns against using the biblical terms ‘brother’ and ‘sister’ for other Christians, because this doesn’t “take into account our non-binary friends”.

The Guide also recommends controversial organisations like the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and Stonewall for more information.

Outspoken conservative clergyman Calvin Robinson criticised the guidance as “communist ideology” and said: “This is not Christianity. It is Critical Theory: ‘smash heteronormativity.’ It is no longer enough to acknowledge disordered lifestyles. Everything normative and ordered must be demolished… One must make a choice. Embrace the ways of this trendy yet toxic ideology, or embrace God’s order.”

The Coalition for Marriage stated: “The Methodist Church in Britain… is one of the clearest examples of how redefining marriage to include same-sex couples is the slipperiest of slopes to devaluing marriage completely. The denomination even affirmed ‘informal cohabitation’ as equivalent to marriage.”

US evangelist Franklin Graham wrote on X: “The Methodist Church in the UK is trying to edit what the Word of God says to be more appealing to the changing whims of culture. As Christians, we aren’t called to avoid what might offend people—we are called to share the Truth of God’s Word.”

King Charles and Queen Camilla presiding at the State Opening of Parliament in November 2023
King Charles and Queen Camilla presiding at the State Opening of Parliament in November 2023 ( via Wikimedia Commons)

Conversion therapy bill absent in King’s Speech

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s plan for the current session of Parliament doesn’t seem to include a conversion therapy bill. Any mention of it was absent from the King’s Speech at the opening of Parliament in November.

The controversial proposal to ban conversion therapy threatened to restrict the freedom of Christian prayer and counselling, as well as preventing any professional from offering treatment for people who want to change from homosexuality to heterosexuality.

The National Director of Christian Voice, Stephen Green, commented: “Your prayers, backed up by emails to MPs, have been answered. The King’s Speech today made no reference to any ban on ‘conversion therapy’… However, there was nothing to stop the rest of the ‘woke agenda’.”

Meanwhile Mr Green was facing court proceedings on 19 January for reciting Psalm 139 within the ‘buffer zone’ of an abortion clinic.

Dr Aaron Edwards
Dr Aaron Edwards: dismissed for defending marriage (Credit: Christian Concern)

Sacked theology lecturer sues college

A Christian lecturer who claims he was fired for his biblical views on sexuality is suing his employers, Cliff College in Derbyshire.

Dr Aaron Edwards was dismissed from the Methodist-led college last March after defending traditional marriage on social media. As HEART reported last year, he had tweeted: “Homosexuality is invading the Church. Evangelicals no longer see the severity of this because they’re busy apologising for their apparently barbaric homophobia, whether or not it’s true. This is a Gospel issue, by the way. For if sin is no longer sin, we no longer need a Saviour.”

“If I don’t do this… ten other Christians are going to be in a similar position”

Dr Edwards says he is pursuing legal action “to raise awareness of the issue and… for the sake of justice. It’s just horrendous how many times this kind of thing happens, but my case is quite unique” because it is a “Christian against a Christian organisation” rather than against secular culture. “If I don’t do this… ten other Christians are going to be in a similar position.”

Faithwire reported that he is being supported by the Christian Legal Centre.

Family pays tribute to Christian who died in hit and run

Chris Marriott and his wife Bryony
Chris Marriott and his wife Bryony

The family of a Christian man who was killed while helping an unconscious woman on the street in Sheffield has praised his selflessness.

He is now “with his Lord and Saviour”

In a statement via South Yorkshire police, the family said Chris Marriott, was now “with his Lord and Saviour” and had “devoted much of his life to helping others”. Marriott was also described by the police as a “Good Samaritan” and his death hit the national headlines. He was a member of City Church in Sheffield.

A GoFundMe appeal has raised over £31,000 for the father of two’s family. The organisers said Marriott was “a man who loved people”.

Hassan Jhangur, 23, has been arrested on suspicion of being the driver who hit Marriott and several others alongside him.

The family added that Chris was a man of faith “who wanted others to also experience the joy he had found trusting in Jesus”.

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