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United Methodists maintain ban on same-sex marriage, LGBTQ clergy members

Posted at 5:24 PM, Feb 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-26 18:47:02-05

BUFFALO, N.Y. — The United Methodist Church could face major backlash after it rejected a proposal to allow LGBTQ clergy to minster and allow same-sex marriage.

"What my future is at this point is also unknown as far as the future as a leader within in the church or at least as the church is now," Pastor Daven Oskvig from Christ United Methodist Church in Buffalo said.

More than 800 United Methodist leaders from around the world met in St. Louis to decide if the church would adopt more progressive values regarding LGBTQ issues.

Just 75 votes separated both sides with delegates deciding to uphold the "traditional plan" which is based on scripture.

"We need to continue to uphold what the original gospel teaching of the original disciples of Jesus as well as the apostle Paul taught," Pastor John Loeser, from Exley United Methodist Church in Wilson, Niagara County said.

There are more than 800 United Methodist churches in Western, Central, and Upstate New York.

A few pastors that 7 Eyewitness News spoke with said that open LGBTQ clergy members were already ministering as well as others officiating same-sex marriages. That is why this issue came to the forefront.

There are around 12.6 million United Methodists in the world with about 7 million in the U.S.

It is unclear when these changes will be seen in churches. During the conference, leaders mentioned members could see changes as soon as the beginning of next year.