Efforts to allow gays and lesbians to serve as clergy in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) have been defeated again, sealed by votes Saturday.
But the margin of defeat _ the final tally has yet to be determined _ is already guaranteed to be much closer than in previous years. That is encouraging for gay clergy supporters and concerning to opponents, with both sides expecting the issue to be revisited in the future.
Last summer, the 2.3 million-member denomination's General Assembly voted to drop a constitutional requirement that would-be ministers, deacons and elders live in "fidelity within the covenant of marriage between and a man and a woman, or chastity in singleness."
"The tide is turning before our very eyes in understanding that GLBT men and women are loved by God and called to ministry," said the Rev. Janet Edwards, co-moderator of More Light Presbyterians, which supports changing the ordination standards. "The church is catching up with the love Jesus has for all God's children."
Like many mainline Protestant denominations, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has been fighting for years over Biblical authority and the place of gays and lesbians in the church.
From PA via Washington Post