Mennonites in Ohio Protest Exclusion of Homosexuals

July 2, 2009 - 2:19 PM
Gay and lesbian Mennonites dressed in bright pink have gathered with others outside the church's biannual convention in Columbus to criticize its leaders for trying to push them out.

A group of young Mennonites and ministers, wearing pink, gather to protest outside the Mennonite Church USA's biannual meeting Thursday, July 2, 2009 in Columbus, Ohio, pushing for more inclusion of gays and lesbians. (AP Photo/Kiichiro Sato)

Columbus, Ohio (AP) - Gay and lesbian Mennonites dressed in bright pink have gathered with others outside the church's biannual convention in Columbus to criticize its leaders for trying to push them out.
 
About 100 ministers and lay people prayed, sang hymns and spoke of feeling ostracized from the church at the protest in downtown Columbus on Thursday. The "pink Menno" campaign is an effort to get the church to address the deeply divisive issue of allowing homosexuality within its congregations.
 
The Rev. Cindy Lapp, pastor of Hyattsville Mennonite Church in Maryland, says her congregation has lost its voting rights within the church for welcoming gays and lesbians
 
Nearly 1,400 Mennonite ministers and church members have signed a letter voicing their support of the campaign.