Twitter icon

Facebook icon

About this site
About us
Our statement of belief
Is this your first visit?
Contact us
External links

Recommended books

Visitors' donated essays
Our forum
New essays
Other site features
Buy CD of this site
Vital notes

World religions
Definition of Christianity
 Shared beliefs
 Handling change
 Bible topics
 Bible inerrancy
 Bible harmony
 Bible Interpreting
 Individuals in the Bible
 Beliefs & creeds
 Da Vinci code
 Revelation & 666
WICCA & Witchcraft
Other religions
Cults and NRMs
Compare Faiths

Non-theistic beliefs

About all religions
Main topics
Basic information
Gods and Goddesses
Handling change
Doubt & security
Confusing terms
End of the World?
True religion?
Seasonal events
More information

Morality & ethics
Absolute truth

Attaining peace
Religious tolerance
Religious freedom
Religious hatred
Religious conflict
Religious violence

"Hot" topics
Very hot topics
10 Commandments
Abortion access
Assisted suicide
Death penalty
Environment/Climate change

Gay marriages

Human rights
Gays in military
Sex & gender
Spanking kids
Same-Sex marriages
Stem cells
Women's rights
Other topics

Laws and news
Religious laws
Religious news

Sponsored links



Religious Tolerance logo


Internal conflicts and divisions within
mainline Protestant denominations:

horizontal rule

Sponsored link.

horizontal rule


bullet"Disunity distorts truth, wastes resources, hinders witness, impoverishes worship and discredits the gospel." Statement by an anonymous Irish Methodist; quoted by the Most Reverend George Carey, Archbishop of Canterbury at ecumenical vespers, 2000-MAY-17.

bullet"Today, there are two religions in the Episcopal Church. One remains faithful to the biblical truth and received teachings of the Church, while the other rejects them...Radical activists seek to replace biblical truth and godly morality with secular humanism and moral relativism. We have become a church which contradicts our own teaching." Report of the Concerned Clergy and Laity of the Episcopal Church. 1 

bullet"A high-ranking Lutheran pastor has been suspended from his duties and ordered to apologize to all Christians for participating with Muslims, Jews, Sikhs and Hindus in an interfaith prayer service in New York's Yankee Stadium after Sept. 11." Alan Cooperman, Washington Post staff writer. 2

horizontal rule

Divisions within denominations: 

North American social conservatives and liberals hold conflicting beliefs about many topics with a religious, moral or ethical component. These include: equality of women in the workforce and home, equal rights for homosexuals, bisexuals and transgender persons, abortion access, corporal punishment of children, physician assisted suicide, the death penalty, and many other "hot" topics. These differences are naturally reflected within Christian denominations.

Intense conflicts have resulted, particularly within mainline Christian denominations such as Episcopalian, Presbyterian, Lutheran, and Methodist churches. Conservatives within these denominations have formed Back-to-Tradition or Renewal groups, which often exist in a state of tension with the more liberal leadership of their denomination.

This series of essays will deal mainly with internal conservative-liberal conflicts within mainline denominations.

horizontal rule

Sponsored link:

horizontal rule

Topics covered in this section:

bulletWhy do major divisions exist within mainline denominations? << We suggest that you read this essay first. ^
bulletDivisions over homosexuality:
bulletInteractions within denominations, with homosexuals

bulletOverview of the conflicts within mainline denominations: Is compromise possible, or is schism inevitable?

bullet Recommended books covering a broad range of Christian beliefs about the LGBT community

bulletDetails of current major conflicts with denominations:
bulletEpiscopal Church

bulletEvangelical Lutheran Church in America

bulletUnited Methodist Church

bulletPresbyterian Church (USA)

bulletOther denominations
bulletDivisions within denominations on non-homosexual matters:
bulletThe Episcopal Church (Female ordination, prayer, modernism...)

bulletThe Lutheran Church -- Missouri Synod (Participation in interfaith events)

horizontal rule

Related essays on this web site:


Ecumenical movements within Christianity


Forces of schism within Christianity

horizontal rule

References used:

The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.

  1. Concerned Clergy and Laity of the Episcopal Church (CCLEC) at:

  2. Alan Cooperman, "New York Lutheran Leader Suspended: Synod Seeks Pastor's Apology for Praying With 'Pagans' After Sept. 11 Attacks," Washington Post, 2002-JUL-6, Page A02. See:

horizontal rule

Site navigation: Home page > Christianity > here

Site navigation: Home page > Comparison of religions > here

horizontal rule

Latest update: 2014-JUN-23
Author: B.A. Robinson

line.gif (538 bytes)
Sponsored link

horizontal rule

Go to the previous page, or to the Christian menu, or to the Comparison of religions menu, or choose:

Custom Search

Go to home page  We would really appreciate your help

E-mail us about errors, etc.  Purchase a CD of this web site

FreeFind search, lists of new essays...  Having problems printing our essays?

Twitter link

Facebook icon

Google Page Translator:

This page translator works on Firefox,
Opera, Chrome, and Safari browsers only

After translating, click on the "show
original" button at the top of this
page to restore page to English.