06/24/2014 // West Palm Beach, Florida, US // JusticeNewsFlash // Justice News Flash // (press release)
Philadelphia – A United Methodist Church appeals panel decided to reverse a decision to defrock a Pennsylvania pastor who officiated his son’s same-sex wedding. As reported by the Associated Press (AP), the nine-person panel ordered Frank Schaefer’s pastoral credentials to be restored on Tuesday, stating the jury’s decision in choosing punishment after he was convicted was wrong.
Schaefer presided over his son’s wedding in 2007. He was defrocked after refusing to vow to uphold the law book of the Methodist church in its entirety, including the provisions pertaining to same-sex marriages being performed by clergy.
The appeals panel upheld a 30-day suspension that had previously been served by Schaefer, and recommended he receive back pay dating back to when it ended in December.
Schaefer is quoted by the AP as stating of the panel’s decision, “I’ve devoted my life to this church, to serving this church, and to be restored and to be able to call myself a reverend again and to speak with this voice means so much to me.”
This report is provided by Justice News Flash – Philadelphia Legal News
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