Allendale United Methodist Church supports LGBTQ rights despite church vote

Rev. Andy Oliver of Allendale United Methodist Church, supports LGBTQ rights
Rev. Andy Oliver of Allendale United Methodist Church. By Seán Kinane / WMNF News (March 2019).

In late February — at an international conference of the United Methodist Church in St. Louis — delegates voted against a proposal to let regional groups decide whether or not to ordain members of the LGBTQ community and to allow ministers to officiate at same-sex marriages in the church.

Joining us in the WMNF studio to talk about that decision and why he opposes it was Rev. Andy Oliver from Allendale United Methodist Church in St. Petersburg.

Gay pride flag. By WMNF News (June 2013).

Delegates at that conference supported what was called a “Traditional Plan,” which strengthens enforcement and penalties against rule-breaking clergy, like Rev. Oliver.

Most American delegates were on the side of LGBTQ rights, but more delegates in other geographic regions supported the Traditional Plan?

We talked about whether people were leaving the church after this decision — or alternately — joining the church.

Listen to the full show here.

For years, Rev. Oliver has been openly defying the church, in a way, by officiating at same-sex marriages.

On Sunday there was a special service at Allendale UMC — they invited people to come to grieve and to celebrate “who we are.”

Outside the church is a sign with six heart shapes, in the colors of the rainbow. Below that are the words, “For harm done by the church we are sorry.”

The sign was also vandalized last summer with spray paint. The church responded by erasing some of the vandalism and putting the words “Love always wins!” alongside.

Rev. Oliver told the Tampa Bay Times he would work with Equality Florida on healthy and safe schools, such as anti-bullying measures to make schools safe for transgender students. He said, “This may be a blow for the general church … but it’s going to mobilize us to deeper action.”

Early in the show we also heard a comment left by a listener about Friday’s show on medical debt, on the U.S. healthcare system and comparisons with Canada’s system.

Watch part of the show here:


You may also like

dental patient
Free dental care event to treat thousands in Lakeland

Listen: Floridians without access to dental care will be able...

Florida redistricting
A new lawsuit says some Florida House and congressional districts were unconstitutionally gerrymandered

A federal lawsuit contends that some state House and congressional...

Ignoring Climate Change is Not a Winning Strategy

Florida Republicans are so afraid of climate change that they've...

The Scoop: Fri. May 24th, 2024 Tampa Bay and Florida headlines by WMNF

The National Ocean Atmospheric Association reported as many as 25...

Ways to listen

WMNF is listener-supported. That means we don't advertise like a commercial station, and we're not part of a university.

Ways to support

WMNF volunteers have fun providing a variety of needed services to keep your community radio station alive and kickin'.

Follow us on Instagram

Surface Noise
Player position: