IRD misses the point
The IRD attempts to shock their readers in noting a Methodist church shares its space with an anarchist group. But what's fascinating is the new joint ministry that's occuring between that group and the parish.
But that's ignored because the point is to score some points against a liberal congregation, in this case one with a transgendered pastor. And the lesson which is the same for most IRD press releases is that liberal churches always face a "dwindling flock."
That's odd. My own personal experience is that a good number of self identified progressive congregations can sometimes experience significant growth. That's certainly the case in my own community with two of the most liberal churches in the area.
And apparently that's the experience of the church the IRD is reviling:
"In the past 5 years, membership has quadrupled, for the first time in years families with children are participating, stewardship has tripled.." Things are turning around there.
"Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn." Romans 12:15 As one looks at the good and the bad which happens in the mainline, I wish this passage was taken to heart by more of the church. Maybe the IRD could do this for Christmas? Not likely.