Presbyterian Church rules on gay issues
Feb 19,2008 00:00 by UPI

PITTSBURGH - The highest court in the U.S. Presbyterian Church has ruled that ordination candidates must refrain from sex outside of heterosexual marriage.

The ruling, which stemmed from a case made by the Pittsburgh Presbytery, called a Pittsburgh resolution intended to enforce that provision of the denomination's constitution redundant and unconstitutional, the Pittsburgh Post Gazette reported Monday.

But, Rev. Doug Portz, acting pastor to Pittsburgh Presbytery, was pleased that the ruling upheld the intent of Pittsburgh's resolution.

"The fidelity and chastity provision may only be changed by a constitutional amendment. Until that occurs, individual candidates, officers, examining and governing bodies must adhere to it," said the decision of the Permanent Judicial Commission.

The presbytery had been acting on concerns that the denomination's 2006 General Assembly had created a loophole that could allow presbyteries to declare that actively gay ordination candidates were acting in good conscience.

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