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Franklin Graham Critiques Brit Methodists for 'Editing' God's Word, Removing 'Husband' and 'Wife'

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Evangelist Franklin Graham has called out The Methodist Church of Great Britain for trying to "edit what the Word of God says" to avoid "what might offend people."

Graham's strong statement came after the church released an "Inclusive Language Guide" advising its leaders to avoid using gender terms such as "husband" and "wife" because it is not "the reality for many people" and instead use "neutral" words like "parent," "partner," and "carer."

The denomination also called leaders to repent for hurtful language. 

"Part of the work of being a justice-seeking Church is about recognizing and acknowledging that harm has been done to marginalized groups in the past, not just by wider society but at times by the Church itself, and that it is the Church's responsibility to make amends for this," the guidance reads. "It is crucial for our communications to be sensitive and inclusive because, for such a long time, some groups have been marginalized and/or demonized by common culture."

The guidance, which will be updated every six months, also suggests that leaders use inclusive language when addressing their congregations. Instead of using terms like "men" and "women" they were encouraged to use less offensive language. 

"Try gender-neutral language such as 'folks', 'teammates', 'friends', 'colleagues', or simply 'people'! Similarly, the word 'man' used as a verb – 'who is manning the front desk', for example – can make people feel excluded," it advised. 

The Methodist Church's guidance tells leaders to share their pronouns to help "create a safe space for people to be themselves." 

Graham blasted the guidance. 

"Shame on the Methodist Church," Graham, CEO of Samaritan's Purse, wrote in a Facebook post. "These are Biblical terms — and marriage between a man and a woman is biblical truth. The word 'wife' is used in some 360 verses in 38 books of the Bible. They are in essence trying to edit what the Word of God says and teaches to be more appealing to the changing whims of culture. We are warned against that in Scripture. As Christians, we aren't called to avoid what might offend people — we are called to share the Truth of God's Word that can guide and direct us through every step of life."

He reiterated on X, "The Methodist Church in the UK is trying to edit what the Word of God says to be more appealing to the changing whims of culture. As Christians, we aren't called to avoid what might offend people—we are called to share the Truth of God's Word." 


As CBN News reported, more than a quarter of U.S. congregations have left the United Methodist denomination after the UMC became more accepting of LGBTQ lifestyles.

The UMC forbids the marriage or ordination of practicing homosexuals, but some churches and clergy have defied those bans. This has caused many conservative congregations to leave the denomination. 

According to the United Methodist News Service (UM News), over the last five years, 7,660 congregations, or about 25% of its U.S. churches completed the required steps to leave the organization during a temporary exit policy that closed on December 31, 2023. 

Last month, 74 churches in Florida voted to leave, plus 51 in Illinois, 152 in Mississippi, 8 in New Mexico, and 36 across Texas before the window closed, according to Christianity Today

Of the 7,660 churches that have left the denomination, 5,643 of those disaffiliations came in 2023. 

In 2022, 2,017 churches left the UMC, according to UM News. 

Some churches who have left the denomination have chosen to remain independent, while others have joined the conservative denomination known as the Global Methodist Church.

The UMC schism is the largest denominational divide in the United States since the Civil War, CT reports. 

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About The Author


Talia Wise has served as a multi-media producer for, CBN Newswatch, The Prayer Link, and CBN News social media outlets. Prior to joining CBN News she worked for Fox Sports Florida producing and reporting. Talia earned a master’s degree in journalism from Regent University and a bachelor's degree from the University of Virginia.