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Australian pastor loses church over ‘marriage’ issuecomment (0)

December 15, 2011

LILYDALE, Australia — An Australian Baptist pastor and his congregation have parted company over the issue of gay “marriage.”  

Matt Glover, pastor of Lilydale Baptist Church, said recently on a marriage-equality website that allowing same-sex “marriages” would benefit marriage as an institution: “When a couple want to be part of the institution of marriage, when they fully accept the same rights and responsibilities of marriage and treat marriage with the respect it deserves, why should they NOT get married?” he asked. “As a Christian minister, I believe that marriage is under threat from many angles, but also believe that recognizing same-sex unions will help return marriage to its rightful place in society.”

That prompted two months of congregational turmoil that ended with a closed-door meeting that the pastor was not invited to attend, the Victoria Age reported Dec. 6. Church leaders told the newspaper that Glover is no longer senior pastor but the congregation was instructed not to comment.

Glover said earlier that he didn’t know if his ministry there would survive the controversy. “I have a young family,” he said in a Nov. 27 article about an earlier meeting to decide his future that was cancelled. “I’ve wondered whether I can survive this because of the wounds and the mistrust it creates.”

Glover has worked with gays and lesbians for about 15 years. He said church members knew that when they hired him.

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