Ala. Baptist head says churches whose ministers perform gay marriages ‘not in friendly cooperation’

Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions Executive Director Rick Lance (left) prays about state marriage ruling alongside state convention president Travis Coleman Feb. 6.

Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions Executive Director Rick Lance (left) prays about state marriage ruling alongside state convention president Travis Coleman Feb. 6.

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (BNG, TAB) — The churches of Southern Baptist ministers who conduct marriage ceremonies for same-sex couples in Alabama risk losing their standing with the Alabama Baptist Convention, according to a statement added to the convention website Feb. 10. Rick Lance, executive director of the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions, and Alabama Baptist State Convention President Travis Coleman Jr., pastor of First Baptist Church, Prattville, issued a joint plea to “stand strong for biblical marriage” in the wake of Alabama this week becoming the 37th state in the nation to permit gay “marriage.”

This announcement follows the national coverage of Ellin Jimmerson, an ordained minister and member of Weatherly Heights Baptist Church, Hunstville, performing one of the first same-sex weddings in Alabama. As a point of clarification, Lance and Coleman said in their joint statement, “Any church that allows staff members to officiate at same-sex ceremonies is clearly outside biblical teachings about marriage and human sexuality, and they demonstrate that they are not in like-minded fellowship or friendly cooperation with Alabama Baptists and Southern Baptists.”
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To read the full story, go to www.thealabamabaptist.org. To view Lance and Coleman’s joint statement, go to www.ricklance.com.

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About thealabamabaptist

State Baptist newspaper serving Baptists in Alabama, providing information, inspiration and interpretation as well as challenging readers to serve and find opportunities for ministry that further the kingdom of God.
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