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James L. McCullough

Church World Service Criticizes Governors over Syrian Refugees

November 16, 2015

Officials from a Mainline Protestant church agency are criticizing U.S. governors for declining to resettle Syrian refugees in their states.

An Assemblies of God youth convention gathers in West Bend, Wisconsin in 2007. Over the past decade, the Pentecostal denomination has posted significant growth. (Photo credit: Paul M. Walsh/AP)

Study: Diversity in U.S. Churches Varies Greatly

July 28, 2015

Martin Luther King Jr. once said that 11 a.m. on a Sunday morning is “the most segregated hour in this nation,” but it appears some religious groups are experiencing more success than others in overcoming this historic separation.

Reverend Canon Gina Campbell (left) to preside over January 25 Eucharist, becoming the first United Methodist to do so at Washington National Cathedral, Dr. Kim Cape (right) to preach. (Photos: GBHEM)

United Methodists and Episcopalians Mark “Waystation” to Full Communion

February 6, 2015

United Methodist and Episcopal Church officials recently joined together at the National Cathedral to mark an agreement bringing the two denominations closer.


ELCA Presiding Bishop Goes on Pro-Hezbollah TV Station

September 11, 2014

ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton recently appeared on Al Mayadeen TV. The only problem is that Al Mayadeen is a pro-Hezbollah, pro-Iran, and pro-Assad propaganda outlet.


Christianity and Contemporary Culture: A Conversation in Pittsburgh

August 28, 2013

My conversation partners on August 14, 2013, had their assembly displays in a room hosted by Lutheran CORE, a cross-denominational Lutheran group for “evangelical renewal.” Given the culture war divisions that have also not spared the ELCA in recent years, much of my conversation with Lutheran CORE’s director, Pastor W. Stephens Shipman, Jr. concerned human sexuality. Shipman, in particular, had the “most horrible feeling” after ELCA’s 2009 decisions to allow congregational autonomy concerning same-sex unions and clergy in such unions. “For the first time I was embarrassed to be a pastor,” he said.


Lutherans Gone Wild: God, Gays, and Gender in the ELCA, Part III

August 27, 2013

This last article in the examination of ReconcilingWorks (RW, Parts I and II available here) analyzes RW’s denial of sexual and lifestyle norms interrelated with RW’s denial of natural genders and their significance. These Lutheran heretics reject standards of family formation within the natural institution of marriage and sexual propriety, once again irrespective of consequences. RW’s baleful influence in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) calls into question whether any committed Christian can in good conscience remain in the ELCA.


Lutherans Gone Wild: God, Gays, and Gender in the ELCA, Part II

August 24, 2013

A previous Juicy Ecumenism article examined the brave new genderless and “pansexual” world propagated by the Lutheran homosexual group ReconcilingWorks during the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s (ELCA) 2013 Churchwide Assembly. Further examination of ReconcilingWorks’ (RW) website, though, only deepens a disturbing understanding of RW’s heretical and immoral agenda. As analyzed by this article in particular, RW stands for the ideological deconstruction of natural human gender, however harmful the consequences.


Lutherans Gone Wild: God, Gays, and Gender in the ELCA, Part I

August 23, 2013

A vain desire to eliminate all distinctions among genders and their various homosexual and heterosexual acts featured prominently at pro-homosexual events during the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s (ELCA) 2013 Churchwide Assembly. The revisionist worship at which ELCA’s first openly homosexual bishop, Guy Erwin, gave the sermon, previously examined by me at Juicy Ecumenism, was merely the climax in a series of events hosted at the assembly by the Lutheran pro-homosexual group ReconcilingWorks. While the group’s website hailed that the assembly events including Erwin’s presence would “make history,” objective observation of ReconcilingWorks’ presence at the assembly in Pittsburgh’s David L. Lawrence Convention Center reveals a deeply disturbing agenda.


And Now for Something Completely Different?: Gay Lutheran Bishop Presides at Revisionist Worship Service

August 19, 2013

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s (ELCA) first openly gay bishop, Guy Erwin, presided over a highly heterodox worship service on August 14, 2013, during ELCA’s 2013 Churchwide Assembly in Pittsburgh. Erwin’s subsequent dismissal of the service’s doctrinal significance notwithstanding, the bishop’s presence amidst such liturgical revisionism raises disturbing questions about proper theological formation in the ELCA.


O Brother, Where Art Thou: Palestinian Lutheran Bishop Provokes Questions in Pittsburgh

August 17, 2013

Rt. Rev. Dr. Munib A. Younan, president of the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land (ELCJHL), addressed the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s (ELCA) 2013 Churchwide Assembly yesterday, August 15, 2013. The Palestinian Younan’s comments to the assembly in Pittsburgh’s David L. Lawrence Convention Center prompted many questions, often unintentionally, about Christianity and its various members in the Middle East and beyond.


New Bishop, Old Problems: First Female Presiding Bishop Unlikely to Stem Lutheran Denomination Decline

August 16, 2013

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) elected Elizabeth Eaton, ELCA’s bishop for the Northeastern Ohio Synod, as the denomination’s first female presiding bishop on August 14, 2013. Despite Eaton’s professed desire to unite Lutherans divided over contentious issues such as homosexuality, however, analysis and evidence indicate that her historic election has little chance of altering the “liberal-leaning” ELCA’s ongoing woes.


Always Declining: The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s Stillborn Quarter Century of Existence

August 14, 2013

Optimism literally projected on screen at the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s (ELCA) 2013 Churchwide Assembly in Pittsburgh running from August 12-17, 2013, cannot ultimately hide the membership decline that has accompanied this denomination since its origins in 1987. Although much heralded 25 years ago as a unification of American Lutherans, the ELCA’s anniversary slogan of “Always Being Made New: 25 Years Together in Christ” on display at Pittsburgh’s David L. Lawrence Convention Center rings bitterly ironic in light of ECLA’s dwindling, aging congregants and sinking contributions. Liberal theology and politics in America’s so-called Mainline Protestant denominations apparently just gets older and older.