A nine-person appeals panel ordered the church to restore Frank Schaefer’s pastoral credentials.
“I would like to get my credentials back,” said Schaefer, who will appear before a church panel in Baltimore this week to argue that his punishment was illegal under church law.
It was Human Relations Sunday, in honor of Martin Luther King — an auspicious day for Reverend Frank Schaefer to bring his message.
Church officials have defrocked a United Methodist pastor from Pennsylvania who officiated his son’s gay wedding in Massachusetts.
Rev. Frank Schaefer, in dark suit, was surrounded by supporters after annoucing he won’t abide by Methodist Church rules banning same-sex marriages and won’t give up his credentials.
“We thought this would be the appropriate way for us to affirm that God’s love extends to people of all gender and sexual preferences,” says David W. Brown, an associate minister at Arch Street United Methodist Church.