Methodist Church Suspends Lesbian Minister Rose Denman

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In New Hampshire, a jury of United Methodist Church ministers suspends Rose Mary Denman, a lesbian minister, because she has violated a church rule which prohibited practicing homosexuals from being in the clergy.

Rev. Denman had tried to get the court to address the merits of the rule itself, but the ministers refuse. According to them, the only relevant thing was whether she violated the rule, not whether the rule is just or appropriate.

Rose Mary Denman tells reporters:

"That feels good. They were men and women of integrity. They were telling the church they were not sure the church has behaved like the church."

Rev. Denman does win one small victory: she's only suspended until the United Methodist Church annual meeting next June. Regardless of what happens there, though, she plans on transferring the ministerial credentials to the Unitarian Universalist Association, a denomination which doesn't exclude "practicing homosexuals" from its clergy.


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