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Isla Vista Pastor Won’t Be Defrocked Again

Pastor Frank Schaefer said he was on a plane home to California when he learned the United Methodist Church ruled in his favor.

A church panel upheld a June decision to reinstate the pastor after he refused to promise he would not officiate anymore same sex marriages.

To date, Schaefer has only officiated one. It was his son’s 2007 marriage to a male partner in Massachusetts where same sex marriage is legal.

When a member of his then congregation in Lebanon, PA, learned of the ceremony he accused Schaefer of breaking with Methodist doctrine.

Monday’s ruling does not change doctrine, but Schaefer said it sends a message that the church is listening.

Schaefer, who immigrated from Germany, four children, two are gay, one is a lesbian.

During the controversy he was moved to Isla Vista’s University Methodist Church, near UCSB.

Schaefer said you can learn more in his book,”Defrocked: How a Father’s Act of Love Shook the United Methodist Church.”

It tells the story of how his oldest son almost committed suicide because he thought he would go to hell for being homosexual.

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