It all started when Benjamin Hutchison, Senior Pastor at Cassopolis United Methodist Church in Cassopolis, MI, married his long-time partner, Monty. He was forced to resign from his job for “violating church law,” which forbids pastors from marrying someone of the same gender.
Thirty pastors attended Hutchinson’s wedding with 15 joining together to officially pronounce Hutchison and his partner “husband and husband.” Of those 15, nine are now being threatened with disciplinary action by the district bishop.
Michael Tupper was one of the pastors who officiated the wedding. He also signed the men’s marriage certificate. He said he did so to protest the church’s stance.
“I want to highlight the injustice, at the same time to witness to our inclusive God who does welcome all people and welcomes them whether they are gay or straight,” Tupper told the Kalamazoo Gazette/MLive.com. “It’s just another opportunity to celebrate and witness to our inclusive God.”