A Portland pastor said the Evangelical Covenant Church denomination has kicked his congregation out of its network because of his support for same-sex marriage.
Adam Phillips and his wife moved to Portland from Maryland in August 2013 to start Christ Church Portland under the direction of denominational leaders, who promised to financially support the new church with $150,000 over three years, Phillips said.
The 35-year-old has been open about his belief that same-sex couples should be allowed to marry for years, he said, and leaders knew he wanted to start a church that welcomed LGBT members. He has been an ordained ECC minister since 2008, and involved with the denomination since he was a teen.
“All along the way I’ve been honest with covenant leaders, and I’d been assured our church family was a safe place to have those convictions,” he said.
Phillips said he agrees with the denomination on most issues related to sexuality (that Christians should abstain until marriage and be faithful to their spouse) but believes gay and lesbian couples can have a biblically-sound marriage, too.
“The more stories I heard of exclusion–the stories of friends who experienced depression and suicidal thoughts–made me feel like I couldn’t be silent anymore,” Phillips said.
Click here to read more.