Southern Baptists oust Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church for naming a female pastor

by | Feb 21, 2023 | Religion

(RNS) — Saddleback Church, the megachurch long led by Rick Warren, has been ousted from the Southern Baptist Convention for naming a woman to its pastoral team, against SBC teaching.The Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee decided on Tuesday (Feb. 21) to approve the recommendation from the denomination’s credentials committee that the Lake Forest, California, church “be deemed not in friendly cooperation with the Convention, on the basis that the church has a faith and practice that does not closely identify with the Convention’s adopted statement of faith, as demonstrated by the church having a female teaching pastor functioning in the office of pastor.”
Stacie Wood, wife of Andy Wood, who replaced Warren as lead pastor last summer, has the title of “teaching pastor.” 
Saddleback was one of five churches that were declared to no longer be in friendly cooperation because of a woman having a pastoral role. One church, Freedom Church in Vero Beach, Florida, was ousted “based on a lack of intent to cooperate in resolving concerns regarding a sexual abuse allegation,” the Executive Committee stated.
Executive Committee member Mike Keahbone tweeted that any of the churches that were ousted Tuesday have the option of appealing to the messengers, or delegates, in attendance at the SBC’s next annual meeting, scheduled for June in New Orleans.
“Saddleback now has the option to appeal, which appears likely,” tweeted Keahbone, an Oklahoma pastor. …

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