PCUSA barely keeps ban on ordaining gays

A four-vote margin
It may have been a close vote, but the stance of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) on issues of homosexuality remained unchanged in Richmond, and will stand for at least two more years as the denomination switches to biennial general assemblies.

Delegates to the church’s legislative meeting in the Virginia capital decided July 2 by just four votes— 259-255—to keep intact a 1978 policy that prohibits “unrepentant homosexual practice” by church officers. It marked a significant defeat for gays and lesbians who want to serve as pastors and elders.

The language, which was later upheld as “authoritative” by the church’s 1993 assembly, also says it is unconstitutional to ordain “self-affirming, practicing and unrepentant homosexuals.”


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