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Rev. Karen Dammann
(1957 - living) U.S.A.

Karen Dammann

Seattle United Methodist Church minister

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On March 17, 2004, the Rev. Karen Dammann of Ellensburg, Wash., will undergo a United Methodist clergy trial to respond to a charge that she has violated church law by stating that she is living in a homosexual relationship. Ironically, Rev. Dammann is a cradle Catholic who became a Methodist because of the "progressive nature of the Church.

She is charged with "practices declared by the United Methodist Church to be incompatible with Christian teachings." A complaint was filed against Dammann after she informed her bishop in February 2001 that she was "living in a partnered, covenanted homosexual relationship." United Methodist law forbids the appointment of "self-avowed practicing homosexuals."

Dammann, a clergy member in full connection since 1994, had already been serving United Methodist congregations and was on family leave at the time. She made the disclosure in a letter to Bishop Elias Galvan, stating that she wanted to return from leave and receive a local church appointment.

On March 21, 2004, after about 10 hours of deliberations, a jury of 13 pastors ruled in favor of the Rev. Karen Dammann. Two pastors were undecided and the rest found her not guilty. Rev. Karen will be allowed to continue her ministry. Even the pastor who served as the prosecutor in her case and the bishop who filed the initial complaint against her said they were pleased with the verdict.

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