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Methodist Pastor defrocked for performing gay marriage ceremony reinstated

Lebanon County, PA (WPMT) -- The Methodist Pastor from Lebanon County who was defrocked for performing a same sex marriage ceremony for his son has been reinstated by the United Methodist Church. Frank Schaefer Northeastern Jurisdiction. Pastor Frank Schaefer is a Reverend at Zion United Methodist Church of Iona in Lebanon County. In 2007, Schaefer officiated his son Tim's marriage in Massachusetts, the first state to legalize gay marriage.


A parishioner at his church found out and reported it.


This led to a trial before members of the United Methodist Church, who suspended him and ultimately defrocked him in December of 2013.


\"I really felt sad, it was a huge loss to me. There were moments when I was losing hope, I even asked myself will I ever set foot in another church ever again,\" says Reverend Frank Schaefer.


Performing gay marriages under the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference Board of Ordained Ministry is in conflict with church law.


Schaefer had an appeal hearing last Friday, and today the church ruled to uphold the original 30 day suspension, which expired in December 2013. Schaefer's credentials as a pastor are restored and he is entitled to lost salary and benefits from December 19th until now.


Pastor Schaefer has scheduled a press conference for 3pm in Germantown. FOX43 News will have more on this developing story. 

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