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Services to support LGBT members

Two worship services in Arkansas will be held Sunday to show support and affirmation for LGBT members of the United Methodist Church.

Day of Resistance events will be held at 5:30 p.m. Sunday, at First United Methodist Church, 723 Center St. in Little Rock; and at Trinity United Methodist Church, 1021 W. Sycamore St. in Fayetteville.

In February, the worldwide denomination voted 461-359 to adopt an amended version of the Traditional Plan outlined in its Book of Discipline. That version outlines mandatory punitive measures for those found to have performed a same-sex wedding, and upholds the ban on ordaining “self-avowed practicing homosexuals.”

The two services are organized through the recently formed national Resist Harm movement, created to oppose the Traditional Plan, the amended form of which went into effect Wednesday — two days before church leaders and representatives of the denomination on Friday announced a proposed agreement on splitting the church.

Ward 3 City Director Kathy Webb said LGBT denomination members and allies will take part in the services, which are being held to show solidarity for the amended Traditional Plan.

The Rev. David Freeman, pastor of First United; and the Rev. Maxine Allen will bless the sacrament in Little Rock; participants in that service include Rep. Tippi Mc-Cullough, D-Little Rock, and Ward 4 City Director Capi Peck. Webb, one of three Arkansas co-conveners of the UMC Next coalition, said a choir of 50-60 LGBT members will also be part of the service.

More information on the movement is available at resistharm.com; LGBT members interested in participating can email Webb at kathywebb14@gmail.com .

— ARKANSAS DEMOCRAT-GAZETTE

UMC museum sets reopening gala

The United Methodist Museum, 723 Center St. in Little Rock, will celebrate its grand reopening from 3-5 p.m. on Feb. 2. and the debut of its new exhibit.

The museum, which is housed in the lower level of the city’s First United Methodist Church, will hold a special reception in the church’s fellowship hall during that time for the debut of “Hymnals: Praise, Worship and Grace Through Song.”

Guests may view the galleries before the reception. The museum’s hours are Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and special tour dates can be scheduled by contacting ummac.lr@gmail.com or (501) 904-1280.

— ARKANSAS DEMOCRAT-GAZETTE

Epiphany celebration combines Saint Marks

Saint Mark’s Episcopal Church, 1000 Mississippi St., will celebrate Epiphany at the church with Little Rock’s Saint Mark Baptist Church at 6:30 p.m. Monday.

The joint celebration is one of many events the churches have shared since forming the “2 Marks, 1 Mission” collaboration in 2015. Since its establishment the churches have partnered for back-to-school health fairs, volunteering at the Arkansas Foodbank and helping Samaritan’s Feet, the North Carolina-based nonprofit that distributes new shoes to children.

“We can disagree on lots of things — theology, doctrine … but one thing we can all agree on is helping those who need help,” said the Rev. Danny Schieffler, Saint Mark’s rector.

The Rev. Phillip Pointer, pastor of Saint Mark Baptist Church, will preach during the celebration, and a reception will be held afterward.

— ARKANSAS DEMOCRAT-GAZETTE

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