Pa. pastor won't quit voluntarily over gay wedding

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- A United Methodist minister is defying a church order to surrender his credentials for performing a same-sex wedding, saying church officials will have to defrock him if they want him out of the ministry.

The Rev. Frank Schaefer has been told to give up his pulpit in Pennsylvania by Thursday if he cannot support the denomination's Book of Discipline. But Schaefer, who describes the book as contradictory and biased against gay people, says he won't go quietly.

The Methodist church accepts gay and lesbian members, but rejects the practice of homosexuality as "incompatible with Christian teaching." Schaefer is serving a 30-day suspension for officiating at the 2007 wedding of his gay son in Massachusetts.

He's scheduled to meet with church officials Thursday about his future, following his conviction in a church trial last month.


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