The United Methodist Church has been involved in a lot of drama as of late over issues such as homosexuality, which has threatened to split the church in two.
Now, this issue has just taken another very interesting, and potentially catastrophic turn.
The name Isaac Simmons has been popping up in the Christian community as of late, but you may also know him as Ms. Penny Cost.
That’s right, Simmons, 23, is an openly gay man and Drag Queen in the UMC and, according to Religion News Service, is the current director of operations at the Hope United Methodist Church in Bloomington, Illinois.
Who is Simmons?
Simmons made headlines in the Christian community when he was appointed to his role at the Hope UMC, however, the headlines didn’t stop there.
He became the first gay man to become certified in a position at the Illinois Great Rivers Conference, as well as becoming the first open Drag Queen to be certified in the UMC.
He made the news again on April 11th, when he spoke at the ‘Drag Sunday’ virtual service, where he addressed attendees as his alter-ego alongside other drag performers.
He received great plaudits from the left-leaning media, with WMBD-TV reporting on Simmons on April 25th, stating that he was ‘breaking barriers’ with the UMC.
However, Simmons received a less savory reaction from the more ‘traditional’ Christians, with the head of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Albert Mohler being one of the main critics of his actions and the acceptance of the UMC in Illinois has given him.
‘All God made as men should identify as men’
As previously mentioned, Mohler is the head of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and is a rather reputable man within the UMC community.
Time Magazine once described him as the ‘reigning intellectual of the US evangelical movement.’
Mohler, whilst speaking on his podcast ‘The Briefing’ on April 28th, stated that the actions of Simmons have serious moral, religious doctrinal implications for the UMC, none of which are actually positive.
He claimed that Simmons’ promotion within the church is an ‘intentional revolt against the of creation given by God,’ before claiming that these actions were a ‘direct violation of the Scripture teachings that those who God made as men should identify as men.’
He continued his opposition to Simmons’ appointment and his actions that followed, saying that the UMC has now effectively embraced ‘doctrinal annihilation’ whilst reflecting on the fact that there may be ‘virtually nothing left of the historic Christian tradition.’
He then went on to state that there was a time that events such as ‘Drag Sunday’ would have been ‘virtually unthinkable’ at any other point throughout the history of Christianity.
He stated that, in the case of Simmons, two religions are attempting to operate in one church and in one denomination, something which he claims is unsustainable.
Simmons’ story has been painted as one of tolerance and acceptance by the left-leaning media, without giving a trace of thought to the damaging effects it will have on the United Methodist Church and all those who preside under it.
The split of the church could’ve been avoided, but now, after the actions of Simmons and the Illinois church’s, that seems all but impossible.