Nov 18, 2013 11:35 PM by Jennifer Horbelt

Jury convicts Pa. Methodist pastor for gay wedding

SPRING CITY, Pa. (AP) - A United Methodist minister has been convicted in a Pennsylvania church trial of breaking church law by performing his son's same-sex marriage.

The Rev. Frank Schaefer testified that he tried to follow God's command to minister to all, even if he disobeyed the Methodist Book of Discipline.

The jury will reconvene Tuesday morning for the penalty phase. Schaefer faces punishment ranging from a reprimand to losing his ministerial credentials.

Schaefer, of Lebanon, says he could have avoided the trial by agreeing to avoid any more same-sex ceremonies. But he declined, noting that three of his four children are gay.

The charges over the 2007 ceremony in Massachusetts came just a month shy of the church's six-year statute of limitations, after a congregant complained.


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