I am thinking maybe I need to figure out how to spend more time in Wisconsin. For a couple of reasons.
One reason is that it is the home of the United Methodist pastor Rev. Amy DeLong who was tried in a church trial for performing a same-gender commitment service. (Read Time magazine's coverage of her trial here.)
|Rev. Amy DeLong|
It is also home to the clergy of the Wisconsin Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church who served on the jury during her trial. Their sentence was a 20-day suspension and a requirement that she write a paper to outline procedures for United Methodist clergy to resolve issues that "harm the clergy covenant, create an adversarial spirit or lead to future clergy trials."
Amy's paper has been written and presented to the conference. The conference has established a clergy covenant team which is meeting and hosting a webpage.
Time magazine called the jury's sentence at Amy's trial "historic." Time said: "The elders handed down the first sentence in 20 years of United Methodist jurisprudence that did not indefinitely suspend or defrock an elder for officiating a same-sex union."
The sentence of the Wisconsin clergy may be the reason there have so few complaints filed against clergy concerning marriage equality.
|Father Bill Brennan celebrates mass with a woman priest|
And then I came across this headline this week in a Reuter's news story: