Religion News Service
By Meghan Florian
(RNS) The Virginia Mennonite Conference suspended a pastor’s ministerial credentials Wednesday (May 25) because he officiated at a same-sex wedding.
The Rev. Isaac Villegas of the Chapel Hill (N.C.) Mennonite Fellowship and my pastor, is “at variance” with the conference, which belongs to the Mennonite Church USA. The denomination, with some 100,000 members, holds that marriage is “a covenant between one man and one woman for life.”
The conference was aware of Villegas’ plan to officiate the wedding well in advance, as the congregation has been in dialogue with it for years over the matter of fully welcoming LGBT people in the congregation.
But the conference went one step beyond an immediate suspension of the minister’s credentials. It shifted the tone of the conversation, not to mention the power dynamic, from “variance” to “misconduct.”
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