March 20, 2020: UMC postpones conference on LGBT debate, Sandi Patty, church confiscation

Friday, March 20, 2020:

Here are the latest headlines, brought to you by The Christian Post.

— UMC General Conference postponed, pushing back LGBT debate

The United Methodist Church General Conference, the global policy-making gathering for the mainline denomination, has been postponed amid concerns about spreading the coronavirus. The General Conference is held every four years and was originally scheduled to take place May 5th through May 15th at the Minneapolis Convention Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

This year’s General Conference had planned to address legislation aimed at splitting the denomination over its longstanding internal debate on gay marriage and the ordination of noncelibate homosexual clergy.

— Sandi Patty tests positive for coronavirus

Legendary gospel singer Sandi Patty revealed Tuesday that she has tested positive for the coronavirus.

The songstress returned home to Oklahoma City last week and said she recalled feeling sick for weeks. She decided to get tested for COVID-19 and the results came back positive on Tuesday.

Patty said she and her husband are quarantining themselves at home and advise all Americans to do the same.

— Sudan abolishes Islamist committees formed to confiscate church properties

Sudan’s transitional government has abolished Islamist committees formed under the regime of former President Omar al-Bashir that were used to take over church properties. 

Sudan’s Minister of Religious Affairs, Nasreldin Mofreh, signed an order last Wednesday requiring the dissolution of so-called church councils that legitimized the former government’s confiscation of church properties.

— Millennials most likely to fact check sermons, Barna study finds

Millennial-aged churchgoers are more likely than older generations to fact-check their pastor’s sermons, according to report released by the Barna Group. Millennials were also the more likely to check their social media, emails, and text messages during sermons, and more likely to not pay close attention to sermons when compared to Gen X, Baby Boomers and Elder churchgoers.

— Federal judge rules in Katy Perry’s favor, overturns verdict in lawsuit by Christian artist

A Los Angeles federal judge overturned on Tuesday a jury’s verdict that found pop star Katy Perry and her collaborators guilty of copying a Christian rap song for her hit song, “Dark Horse.” 

U.S. District Judge Christina A. Snyder said she did not believe the 2008 Christian hip-hop song “Joyful Noise” by rapper Marcus Gray was distinctive enough to be in violation of the copyright law as the jury found.

In the appeal this week, Perry’s attorney, Christine Lepera, described the first verdict as a “travesty of justice” that would greatly affect creativity in the long run.

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