An Aberdeen minister and his congregation who quit the Church of Scotland over the 2009 ordination of a gay minister are to be temporarily allowed back into their former church building.

Reverend Dominic Smart of Gilcomston South Church and more than 300 of his congregation have been conducting worship in a hotel since February.

The congregation took issue with the Church of Scotland’s General Assembly approving the appointment of the openly gay minister Scott Rennie to Queen’s Cross Church in Aberdeen in 2009.

On Thursday night the Aberdeen presbytery agreed to let them use their old church on a temporary basis.

According to the BBC, committee convener Reverend George Cowie, said: “It is deeply sad when people choose to leave the Church of Scotland. We believe that the Church of Scotland is a broad Church and that it can accommodate people who hold differing views.

“In this case, however, the situation has not involved conflict, scandal or litigation.

“All parties have shown respect for one another and it has been a good Christian witness for us to engage with one another in this manner.”

Reverend Rennie said he did not want to make any comment.