The openly gay minister who survived a challenge to his appointment by religious conservatives in the Church of Scotland, a Presbyterian denomination, will take his post Friday and address his new congregation Sunday, the BBC reported.

Reverend Scott Rennie's appointment as minister of Queen's Cross church in January sparked a loud protest from religious conservatives who mounted a petition drive to remove him. The campaign to unseat the gay minister went so far as to liken supporters of gay clergy to Nazis.

Despite the protest, Rennie, 37, survived. Last month, the church's general assembly, its governing body, overwhelmingly confirmed his appointment in a 326 to 267 vote. But the church also voted in favor of a two-year moratorium on the ordination of gay clergy.

The Anglican Communion is facing a crisis over the ordination of gay and lesbian clergy.

The crisis began in 2003 in the United States when the Episcopal Church – the Anglican body in the U.S. – consecrated the first openly gay bishop, Rev. Gene Robinson of New Hampshire. Robinson, 61, lives in Weare, New Hampshire with his husband.

Rennie, a divorcee and father of one, has been open about his sexuality and plans to live with his partner in the manse in Aberdeen.

The minister will be inducted in a ceremony led by Rev. Alan Falconer.