As of July 10, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) constitution will no longer ban ordination of gay and lesbian ministers.
At presstime, a majority of presbyteries (regional church bodies) had voted 90-69 to ratify the measure, with 14 still to vote.
The change was first approved by the church's General Assembly in 2010, but presbyteries did not ratify similar measures by the 1997, 2001 and 2008 assemblies.
"What has changed is that persons in a same-gender relationship can be considered for ordination," General Assembly Stated Clerk Gradye Parsons told the Presbyterian News Service.
"The gist of our ordination standards is that officers submit to the Lordship of Jesus Christ and ordaining bodies (presbyteries for ministers and sessions for elders and deacons) have the responsibility to examine each candidate individually to ensure that all candidates do so with no blanket judgments."
More at the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) website.
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