United Methodist minister and former dean of Yale Divinity, Rev. Thomas Ogletree, will be tried by a church council because he officiated at his son’s marriage to the man he loves. The October 2012 wedding violates the rule that stops Methodist clergy from blessing marriages of loving LGBT couples. (note: his son, Tom Ogletree Jr., is a former employee of GLAAD).
“I could not with any integrity as a Christian refuse my son’s request to preside at his wedding,” he said in a press release from Methodists in New Directions. “It is a shame that the church is choosing to prosecute me for this act of love, which is entirely in keeping with my ordination vows to ‘seek peace, justice, and freedom for all people’ and with Methodism’s historic commitment to inclusive ministry embodied in its slogan ‘open hearts, open minds, open doors.’”
Rev. Ogletree’s trial is the latest in a string of disturbing positions taken against Methodist clergy who have embraced marriage equality. Last year Rev. Frank Schaefer was tried and convicted of violating Methodist law and stripped of his clergy credentials for officiating at his son’s marriage to another man. Bishop Melvin Talbert blessed a gay couple in Alabama last October which lead to complaints by other Methodist bishops. There are other ministers in New York and the Pacific Northwest who are awaiting similar charges.
The Advocate has more on the story.