Kansas Pastor Comes Out to Her Congregation

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Thanks so much for this story

It will be most interesting to see how this will play out. I am in the same conference as this pastor, although a different district, and I do not know her and had to look up to see where that town is located (it is an "exurban" area - "far southwestern Johnson County," according to the city website. Johnson County is either the largest or second largest county in Kansas in population and by and large comprises the "Kansas side" of the Kansas City, Missouri, suburbs). Some who are unfamiliar with the area may not be aware our Bishop has tried to stake a middle ground on the hot button social issues but at one point he promised there would be church trials over pastors performing same sex marriages. While in recent years Kansas as a whole has been changed from a quintessential normal Middle American province to a hotbed of kooks especially of the religious variety, by and large the UMC churches are bastions of normalcy with a somewhat slight progressive bias. The may be the one test case which breaks the logjam, or, conversely, another day of business as usual in the continuing oppression of LGBTs by those in power. Time will tell. It seems in recent histories of church jurisprudence that LGB pastors (note I do not say LGBT pastors because we have at least one trans pastor, and there are no prohibitions of transfolk serving as such) who are outed tend to fare better than those who perform same sex marriages regardless of the pastor's own orientation. That makes sense: the former involves who the pastor is and the latter involves what she or he does. My immediate advice to Rev. Meyer is twofold: (1) Get a lawyer. better to have one and not need one than to need one and not have one; and (2) network with the Kansas Equality Coalition, the prime statewide LGBT civil rights organization. I'm sure Executive director Tom Witt would love to meet with you if he hasn't already. God bless you and your family.

George Nixon Shuler more than 4 years ago