US Presbyterian church votes against openly gay clergy

Jessica Geen April 28, 2009
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The Presbyterian church in the US has once again rejected allowing openly gay clergy to serve.

According to the Presbyterian News Service, the results of the vote, held over the weekend, found 69 presbyteries for the amendment and 88 opposed.

The subject of the vote, Amendment B, as the proposal is known, would have changed language in the church’s constitution which requires pastors to live in “”fidelity within the covenant of marriage between a man and woman or chastity in singleness.”

The requirement bans openly gay clergy from serving.

The Rev. Ron Scates, pastor of Highland Park Presbyterian Church, told the Dallas Morning News: “I’m glad it happened, and happy that the PC [Presbyterian church] continues to stand with the worldwide body of Christ on this issue.”

However, supporters of openly gay clergy welcomed the high number of presbyteries which voted for the amendment.

“The big story here is that many traditionally conservative areas of the country voted to accept gay clergy and lay officers in the church,” said Tricia Dykers Koenig, national organiser for the Covenant Network of Presbyterians. “Our image of what it means to be created in the image of God is broadening.”

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