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THE METROPOLITAN COMMUNITY CHURCH AND HOMOSEXUALITY

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The Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC) is commonly called the Metropolitan Community Church. It was founded by Troy Perry, a Pentecostal minister, in 1968 as a Gay and Lesbian positive religious institution. It is basically indistinguishable from other Evangelical Christian churches in terms of their beliefs, sacraments, order of service etc. One significant difference is that they have a ritual which recognizes same-sex committed partnerships. They regard St. Paul's statements against homosexuality to be "cultural accretions", similar to his belief that women should not speak in church.

There are about 35,000 members in about 230 congregations. Groups are found in most large cities. Their clergy are composed of both men and women. Most of the membership and of the clergy are gay, lesbian or bisexual.

They have greatly suffered from public hatred of homosexuality; they lost four churches to arson in 1973 alone.

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