(RNS)  — On Thursday evening last week, 300 United Methodist clergy and laypeople gathered outside their denomination’s regional headquarters in Garner, N.C., to protest a recent vote that bans LGBT people from marriage and ordination.

Their protest was one of many.

Across the country, from Iowa to Michigan and Texas to Wisconsin, thousands of United Methodists who support LGBT rights are rising up to denounce the denomination’s recent decision to strengthen its ban on gay clergy and same-sex weddings.

These United Methodists are signing petitions, taking out newspaper ads and, in some cases, withholding their dues to the denomination.

Adam Hamilton. Photo courtesy of Church of the Resurrection

They are also plotting a way out.

On Thursday (April 4), a group of 30 clergy,

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