5,200 churches exit UMC in 2023 over LGBTQ+ policies

Broad Street United Methodist Church in Cleveland, TN is shown on a cloudy morning.

The United Methodist Church (UMC) is experiencing significant division over its stance on homosexuality, resulting in over 7,000 congregations leaving the denomination since 2019. More than 5,200 churches have disaffiliated in 2023 alone. Notable departures …

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Vineyard calls for investigation of pastor who left

A pastor stands in front of a crown while behind him several people pray with a person.

An inquiry at Alan Scott’s former church found evidence of manipulation, narcissism, and spiritual abuse.
Vineyard USA is calling on a breakaway congregation to launch a “thorough, independent investigation” into allegations of misconduct, narcissism, and spiritual abuse.
“We pray for those who were hurt, harmed, mistreated, or in any way negatively impacted by their time under the leadership of Alan Scott,” the denomination’s statement says. National leadership is pleading with “current and former board members” at the Anaheim, California, church to “fulfill their legal and spiritual responsibilities.”
Scott has not publicly responded and did not reply to CT’s request for comment.
His Southern California church was founded by the late charismatic leader John Wimber and has long been seen as the “mother church” of the movement. Scott and his wife Kathryn took over Vineyard Anaheim in 2018 and then unexpectedly led the congregation out of the denomination in 2022. There was little explanation, beyond the claim they were following the leading of the Holy Spirit.
“We don’t really understand why,” Scott said in a sermon at the time. “We don’t always know what’s on the other side of obedience.”
Some former members of the church, which is now called Dwelling Place, have sued for fraud, claiming Scott misrepresented his relationship to the Vineyard in an attempt to seize control of $62 million of church assets. The building is debt free and sits on more than five acres zoned for commercial use in Orange County.
Scott also may have been reacting to efforts to reorganize the Vineyard to provide more oversight and accountability. National director Jay Pathak, who took over in January 2022, had dinner with the Scotts to tell them …Continue reading…

The dynamics of church switching in the U.S.

Graphics show the numbers regarding after how many visits a person chooses a new church.

Most adult churchgoers in the United States don’t frequently switch churches. But if they make a congregational change, it’s likely they made a residential change first. And those who switch have high expectations for their …

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