• The high court of the Presbyterian Church (USA) has unequivocally barred non-celibate gay and lesbian clergy. According to the denomination's constitution, ministerial candidates in the PC(USA) are required to be in faithful heterosexual marriages or remain celibate. However, Presbyterians passed an "authoritative interpretation" of the constitution in 2006 that many saw as a compromise, allowing gay and lesbian candidates to declare a conscientious objection to the ordination standard. No such loosening is allowed, ruled the General Assembly Permanent Judicial Commission, the 16-member high court of the PC(USA), on February 11. "We can now rest assured that our standards for ordination in the PC(USA) continue to reflect the clear teaching of Scripture and the plain meaning of our constitution," said a statement from Presbyterians for Renewal.

  • Answers in Genesis, which founded the $27 million Creation Museum in Kentucky last year, has launched a creation science journal online. Ken Ham, president of Answers in Genesis, said submissions to Answers Research Journal will be peer-reviewed, but the journal's guidelines discourage asking non-creationists to conduct those reviews. The journal is needed because of academic bias in most scientific journals against creationists, Ham said. Some articles in the premiere issue are pseudonymous.

  • A New York state appeals court ruled in February that same-sex marriages performed outside of the state must be treated as legally valid. Patricia Martinez, the plaintiff in the case, married Lisa Ann Golden in Canada in 2004. She sued Monroe Community College in upstate New York in 2005 after the school refused to extend health-care benefits to her partner. The court ruled that the college must recognize Martinez's marriage, a decision that may provide a kind of legal counterweight to a 2006 ruling by New York's highest court approving a ban on gay marriage.

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