ALEXANDRIA, Ind. — A Methodist church in Indiana that suffered a massive walk-out after forcing its gay choir director to resign, will close its doors for good at the end of 2014.
David Mantor, pastor of the First United Methodist Church in Alexandria, Ind., says the decision to close the church resulted from falling attendance, membership and financing problems, reports The Herald Bulletin.
Former choir director Adam Fraley worked at the church for six years and attended with his partner, but when a new minister took over, he said that he resigned because of pressure about his sexual orientation.Dr. David Steele, a member of the church for nearly 60 years, was subsequently fired from his leadership position after advocating that Fraley be re-hired.
Steele says most of the congregants who left the church, including himself, never returned.
But Mantor says the closure “is not due to that situation whatsoever,” and cites statistics he says he’s seen from United Methodist Church headquarters that reflect a “downward spiral” of membership and donations across the whole UM church for the past 30 years.
Two bills that would allow businesses to discriminate against Virginia’s LGBTQ community were joined into one Senate bill Monday afternoon in Senate General Laws and Technology subcommittee. While a House version of the bill, HB 773, was heard today, the subcommittee joined it with SB 41 by a 8-7 vote across party lines. SB 41, introduced [...]