20 day suspension

A United Methodist minister acquitted Wednesday on a church charge of being a “self-avowed practicing homosexual,”was sentenced Thursday to a 20-day suspension for presiding at a holy union ceremony for a lesbian couple in 2009.

As part of the penalty, the Rev. Amy DeLong must work with Wisconsin church officials to craft a document that will help resolve future disputes in a more collaborative way in an effort to avoid trials.

Both sides heralded the penalty and split verdict as just.

“I feel good about what the church has done. I think we’ve sent a message that the United Methodist Church will not throw out its gay and lesbian people, and that it has opened the doors for a more inclusive church,” said DeLong, who has long acknowledged to church officials that she is a lesbian in a committed relationship.

The Rev. Tom Lambrecht, a Wisconsin elder who served as church counsel in the trial, said the penalty recognizes that DeLong harmed the clergy covenant and that there are consequences for such actions.

“I think the suspension is just the first step,” said Lambrecht, who had asked the jury to suspend DeLong indefinitely until she agreed not to officiate at same-sex unions in the future. “What’s important is Rev. DeLong’s written work that will look at ways we can resolve issues without creating that adversarial spirit and doing harm to the clergy covenant.”

DeLong, 44, of Osceola, is executive director of Kairos CoMotion, a United Methodist advocacy group that promotes, among other things, greater acceptance of gay and lesbian people. She was appointed to that job by her bishop.

via JSOnline.




  • PastoRick June 27, 2011 Reply

    Once upon a time, people would mix their own rat poison at home, and store the remnant in an old soda pop bottle. Used to see a lot of public service announcements against that because some kid found it and drank their way to death because what they saw on the bottle no longer represented what was in the bottle. That’s what happens with any church that denies the clear teaching of God’s Word. What’s on the inside ceases to be good, becomes poison, while the label on the outside becomes a lie. What’s inside the bottle is no longer “Refreshing”, but deadly. They need to change the label, but their master wants to keep on deceiving “even the elect, if possible”

    • steve miller June 27, 2011 Reply

      Good illustration Pastorick.

      There is so much wrong with this situation where do you begin?

      A 20 day suspension and an invitation to help write church doctrine? Could they be any more schizophrenic?

      • SuzyQ June 27, 2011 Reply

        Steve Miller..you are so right. It’s talking out of both sides of the mouth. The Word clearly states that homosexuality is an abomination to the Lord. This just sickens my soul. I am thankful that our UMC conference is conservative and our representatives are committed to keeping it this way. I just wonder when the day is going to come for the separation of the sheep and the wolves..

        • Annie June 28, 2011 Reply

          “The Word” also clearly states that you shouldn’t be eating shrimp… so I guess all the pastors out there ordering shrimp cocktail at the leaders meeting at Applebee’s should be suspended as well.

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