A United Methodist Church congregation
in Alexandria, Indiana dwindled by 80 percent after the church forced
out its gay choir director.
Adam Fraley told The
Herald Bulletin that he lost his job because of his sexual
Fraley – who attended services with
his partner but was not open about his sexuality while working at the
church – held the position for six years. He resigned in the
spring, saying that a new minister made him uncomfortable.
In September, David Mantor was
appointed as new interim minister.
David Steele, who represents the
congregation, asked Mantor to bring back Fraley. Mantor initially
agreed, but three weeks later he fired Fraley and the following day
told Steele he could no longer serve.
Steele refused to quit, but church
leaders backed Mantor.
Church law states that non-celibate gay
people cannot be “appointed to serve in The United Methodist
But Dan Gangler, director of
communications for the Indiana Conference of the UMC, said that the
law only prohibits gays from being ordained.
“Any other leadership position should
be filled at the discretion of the congregation and the minister,”
Fraley told the paper: “I don't like
how people pick and choose which verses they want to apply. The
Bible also says gluttony and divorce are bad but people seem to
A large majority of the church's
congregation sided with Fraley and Steele, dwindling attendance by
Schaefer, pastor defrocked over gay wedding, considers job offer.)