When delegates to the General Conference of the United Methodist Church voted late last month to strengthen the church’s prohibitions on performing same-sex marriages and ordaining gay and lesbian clergy, it was over the opposition of Methodist colleges and universities in the U.S.

The presidents of a group of 93 colleges and universities affiliated with the UMC issued a joint statement prior to the vote calling on church leaders to amend “their policies and practices to affirm full inclusion in the life and ministry of the United Methodist Church of all persons regardless of their race, ethnicity, creed, national origin, gender, gender identity/expression or sexual orientation.” The statement was unanimously adopted by all member presidents present at a January meeting of the National Association of Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church.

The UMC-affiliated seminaries also opposed the adoption by the church of the so-called traditional plan, which affirms a ban on gay clergy members and imposes new penalties on clergy who perform same-sex marriages in violation of church rules…..

Inside Higher Ed