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January 28, 2015

Roy Moore questions jurisdiction of court that struck down marriage ban

The chief justice of Alabama's Supreme Court claims a federal judge who struck down the state's same-sex marriage ban last week did not have the power to do so.

Roy Moore has sent a letter to Atlanta Governor Robert Bentley which stated: 'As you know, nothing in the United States Constitution grants the federal government the authority to redefine the institution of marriage.'

He also vowed to 'stop judicial tyranny and any unlawful opinions issued without constitutional authority.'

January 27, 2015

First time a pontiff meets with a transgender person

Pope Francis held a private meeting with a transgender man after he wrote to the pontiff about the rejection he experienced by the Catholic church after transitioning. 

Diego Neria Lejárraga and his fiancée Saturday (24 January) were received at the Vatican, in what marked the first meeting between a pontiff and a transgender person.

Last year, Neria sent Francis a letter, in which he described how the church he attended in Plasencia, Spain had rejected him after he underwent sex-reassignment surgery. One priest even called him 'the devil’s daughter.'

January 23, 2015

A statement signed by 30 church leaders had said that gay marriage poses a greater risk to society than divorce or cohabitation

Despite the fact that same-sex marriage is now legal in the majority of US states, senior Roman Catholics and Evangelicals in the US have united to warn of the grave ‘threat’ posed to society by allowing gay couples to wed, reports Christian Today .

January 16, 2015

Podcaster is charged with apostasy

A promiment Mormon critic and pocaster faces excommunication from the church of Latter Day Saints (LDS) for supporting of gay marriage.

John Dehlin yesterday (15 January) said he had been summoned to appear before a disciplinary council on January 25.

'The charge is apostasy, and I have been informed that the likely
outcome of the disciplinary council will be either disfellowshipment (ie, official
censure) or excommunication (ie, termination of my membership),' he said in a statement.

January 16, 2015

Ex-Southern Baptist president delivers an anti-gay sermon at the legislature

A baptist minister invited to give a devotional at the opening of the Georgia House of Representatives on Wednesday (14 January) took the opportunity to rant against gay rights, which he called 'erotic liberty.'

Bryant Wright, pastor of Johnson Ferry Baptist Church and former president of the Southern Baptist convention, reminded legislators that their role was to protect citizens against the 'evil,' in this case gay marriage.

January 14, 2015

Survey flies in the face of TLC's controversial special My Husband's Not Gay

A survey has found gay Mormon men married to women are two to three times more likely to divorce.

The findings showed that between 51% and 69% of mixed-orientation Mormon marriages end in divorce, well above the roughly 25% of Latter Day Saints (LDS) couples who split up.

The survey, published in the Journal of Counseling Psychology last March, is thought to be the largest study of its kind and flies in the face of TLC's controversial special My Husband's Not Gay.

January 7, 2015

Presbytery members were split 45% to 55%

The majority of Church of Scotland presbyteries have backed the appointment of gay ministers.

32 of 45 of the governing bodies across Scotland said ministers and deacons who are in a civil partnership should be allowed to apply to vacant spots.

This is not the final decision, with that taking place in May at the Edinburgh General Assembly.

A total of 1,391 presbytery members voted in favour and 1,153 against, resulting in a 54.6%-45.4% split.

Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Stirling presbyteries backed the proposals.

January 7, 2015

A disciplinary hearing against retired United Methodist Bishop Melvin G. Talbert has ended with a ‘just resolution’ and no further action will be taken against him over his presiding over a same-sex wedding in 2013

The United Methodist Church of the United States has adopted a live-and-let-live attitude on a complaint against one of its retired bishops who married a gay couple in Alabama in 2013 with the church this week issuing a statement declaring the complaint resolved.

January 6, 2015

Craig Friesen and Matt Wiens were married on New Years Eve in Osler Mennonite Church – becoming the first ever same-sex couple to be married in their faith in Canada

A Canadian gay couple made history on New Year's Eve, becoming the first ever same-sex couple who are members of the Canadian Mennonite Church to receive a church wedding in their faith.

Same-sex marriage has been legal in Canada since July of 2005.

However the Mennonite church in Saskatchewan province, Canada only decided to allow individual congregations to marry same-sex couples if they wish to as of last year and Craig Friesen and Matt Wiens are the first to seek the Mennonite’s blessing in Canada.

January 2, 2015

Andi Woodhouse jumped to his death in mid-December but local media did not report the fact that he was a trans man

A vigil will take place tomorrow (3 January) for a trans man who committed suicide in Pittsburgh.

Andi Woodhouse, aged 24, died on Saturday 13 December after jumping from the 10th Street Bridge. From Lebanon, Pennsylvania, Woodhouse worked at a local McDonalds.

January 1, 2015

US District Judge Daniel Crabtree has told opposing attorneys that he wants a schedule from them by the end of this month to hear their arguments

A federal judge in Kansas took steps on Wednesday to fast track a ruling over a legal challenge to the ban on same-sex marriage in the state, reports AP.

The challenge was raised by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) in October, who are acting on behalf of several couples who had previously been refused marriage licenses in the Kansas counties of Sedgwick and Douglas.

December 31, 2014

Wiltshire’s Reverend Carol Stone underwent gender reassignment surgery in 2000 and was welcomed back to the pulpit by her parishioners

The Reverend Carol Stone, the first serving Church of England vicar to undergo gender reassignment surgery, has died at the age of 60 from pancreatic cancer.

She was ordained under her previous name into the church in 1978. She served at Bradford-upon-Avon and as chaplain at Dauntsey's School in West Lavington, prior to her position as vicar of St Philip's Church in Upper Stratton and St Peter's Church in Penhill, Wiltshire.

She took up her position in Upper Stratton in 1996, and announced four years later that she intended to transition.

December 24, 2014

‘Being queer makes me no less black or Christian’

The Christmas season is a difficult time of year for me.

I am always bothered by our culture’s egregious forms of commercialism – and its either lack of or its anemic recognition of other forms for religious holidays like Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Ramadan, and the celebration of the winter solstice during this season.

December 18, 2014

Gaylard Williams allegedly approached man at a lake - gay pornography later found in his car

Gaylard Williams leads a church in Seymour, Indiana, which preaches that homosexuality is a sin.

This week, the 59-year-old pastor was arrested for allegedly approaching a man parked at a lake, squeezing his genitals and asking to perform oral sex.

The man told the pastor he was 'barking up the wrong tree.'

The man took down the pastor's license plate and called police. Williams told police he was in the area looking for a friend who goes fishing there, according to WLKY.

December 18, 2014

'You have to have heterosexual sex to reproduce'

US evangelist Pat Robertson has made the bizarre claim that gay people will go extinct because they cannot reproduce.

A viewer wrote into his 700 Club show on Christian Broadcasting Network, complaining that her church did not allow dating and even showing interest in the opposite sex was treated like a sin.

'We’re getting older and no one is getting married,' she said.

Robertson said this was 'absurd' because a church with a no-dating policy would 'die out' – like gay people.

December 17, 2014

He was protesting against a cardinal who said he believed gay people didn't exist

A gay Italian teacher is being forced to hang a crucifix on his classroom wall after the school cited a Mussolini fascist-era law.

Professor Davide Zotti, a philosophy teacher in the city of Trieste, northeast Italy, took down the crucifix in protest of homophobic statements made by the Catholic Church.

He said he was especially offended by Cardinal Camillo Ruini, who in October claimed he had no reason to support 'imaginary rights' as he believes gay people do not exist.

December 17, 2014

LGBTI military veterans group OUTVETS will be the first ever gay or lesbian group to be allowed to march openly in South Boston’s St Patrick’s Day Parade celebrating the Irish American experience

The organizers of South Boston’s St Patrick’s Day parade have voted to allow the first ever LGBTI group to participate openly in the event despite having a Supreme Court validated right to exclude LGBTI groups if they choose.

The United States Supreme Court found in favor of the march's organizers in a 1995 case brought by the Irish-American Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Group of Boston, ruling the parade could exclude groups they felt ran contrary to its message.

December 12, 2014

Despite multiple legal setbacks, the state's governor and attorney general work to keep the ban in place

Same-sex marriage in Kansas has turned even more complicated.

While the state's governor and attorney general use every legal tactic to keep the ban in place, the state has issued gender neutral marriage certificates.

December 12, 2014

Nigerian pastor explains why Jesus loves gays but African Christians do not

To win the struggle to change men and women’s hearts and minds, one must consider what the Bible calls strongholds – ideologies, views or thinking that have been held on to for a long time.

When that thinking is wrong, the challenge is great.

Many African strongholds include the view that homosexuality is paganistic and paganism is bad. The second is that gay white men want to pollute black children (see the justifications for Uganda's anti-gay laws).

December 9, 2014

Also says same-sex marriage has 'not crossed our minds'

Pope Francis says the Catholic Church must help parents faced with the 'somewhat unusual situation' of having gay children

He wants the parents to stand by those children but as far as those children growing up and being able to marry someone of the same sex, the Pope says that's not something church leaders have even discussed.

December 9, 2014

Charity says 'genitally expressed' same-sex relationships are unacceptable

The Salvation Army is trying to rebrand itself as a gay-friendly charity ahead of its annual Christmas fundraising campaign.

The Christian homeless charity said accusations of anti-gay discrimination were a 'myth' despite reports to the contrary.

'For years, Facebook posts, forwarded emails and rumors have been leading some people to believe that the Salvation Army does not serve members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community,' it said in a statement.

'These accusations simply aren't true.'

December 4, 2014

Catholic church launches a 16-page pastoral statement against gay marriage

The Irish church has said the legalization of gay marriage would be a 'grave injustice' in a 16-page pastoral statement it is distributing ahead of a referendum on the issue early next year.

The pamphlet, titled The Meaning of Marriage, was launched yesterday (3 December) at the Irish Catholic Bishops Conference in Maynooth, and is currently being distributed to more than 1,300 parishes across the country.

The statement said that 'to redefine the nature of marriage would be to undermine it as the fundamental building block of our society.'

December 3, 2014

The 10th Circuit appeals court has rebuffed the latest attempt by the state of Kansas to stop gay people from getting hitched

Kansas remains one of the US states where battles continue to be waged over same-sex marriage.

The US Supreme Court announced in early October that it declined to review pending same-sex marriage bans in several US states.

This paved the way for same-sex marriage in states such as Virginia and Wisconsin, among others, and sent out a clear signal to lawmakers elsewhere that should they continue to fight same-sex marriage in the courts, they would ultimately be disappointed should they get to the Supreme Court.

December 1, 2014

You can bet the DJs are sick of them requesting Like A Prayer

Irish Catholic priests have revealed they regularly go to gay bars.

New research has revealed the sex lives of 'celibate' priests in the Church, revealing many of them have been sexually active and there is an 'active gay scene'.

'Thirty-Three Good Men: Celibacy, Obedience and Identity' publishes new analysis of priests' views from a series of interviews conducted by Dr John Weafer, a former seminarian who is now married with children.