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Roanoke Methodist pastor responds to church's vote for LGBT restrictions

Greene Memorial UMC planning special Sunday service in support of all members

ROANOKE, Va. – The controversial decision by the United Methodist Church to uphold bans on same-sex marriage and LGBT clergy members has brought out fears in one of Roanoke's Methodist churches.

Greene Memorial United Methodist Church pastor Philip Waltz says more than a dozen people have come to him after Tuesday's vote at the Methodist General Conference to enforce a "traditional plan" for the church.

"Those who have contacted me, either by coming in my door or calling me, are expressing shock and disappointment," said Waltz.

Waltz and Greene Memorial have planned a special service Sunday evening in response to the vote. Waltz hopes the service, "For Everyone Born," will show both the congregation and newcomers his denomination is accepting of all people.

"I would hope that we could move to that point where sexual orientation is a factor that doesn't override God's call," Waltz said. "I think the folks that Jesus drew to him were from everywhere. There wasn't that judgment. There was a place for them."

"For Everyone Born" will take place at Greene Memorial UMC at 6:30 p.m. Sunday.


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