Saddleback Church appeals Southern Baptist Convention ouster over woman pastor

by | May 16, 2023 | Religion

(RNS) — Saddleback Church, the California megachurch long known for its former pastor, bestselling author Rick Warren, has appealed the decision by the Southern Baptist Convention to oust it for naming a woman to its pastoral team.Stacie Wood, wife of Andy Wood, who replaced Warren as lead pastor last summer, has the title of “teaching pastor.”
Of the eight congregations removed from official affiliation by the denomination’s Executive Committee since last year’s annual meeting, three are appealing the decision.
Another church, Fern Creek Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky, was also among the five churches ousted for having women in pastoral roles, a stance that is against SBC teaching.
The third church making an appeal is Freedom Church in Vero Beach, Florida, which was ousted “based on a lack of intent to cooperate in resolving concerns regarding a sexual abuse allegation,” the committee stated in February.
On Tuesday (May 16), the SBC credentials committee issued a statement saying the three churches had appealed, following a process that requires a submission in writing at least 30 days before the SBC annual meeting.
That gathering is scheduled for June 13-14 in New Orleans.
During it, the credentials committee said, a representative of each of the three churches will be …

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