A church leader is called to be beyond reproach, and an example to the flock. Scripture tells us leaders will be called accountable for the direction they give those under their care. A church leader must be beyond reproach, and seen to be so. A church leader must be well thought of by others, so they do not fall into disgrace and the snare of the devil.
As church leaders we “proclaim the message; be persistent whether the time is favourable or unfavourable – with the utmost patience in teaching. For the time is coming when people will not put up with sound doctrine, but have itching ears, they will accumulate themselves to suit their own desires, and will turn away from listening to the truth...” (2 Timothy 4.)
We caution church leaders, and acknowledge such standards of God apply to all believers. Our choice of leaders impacts not only our own congregations, but impacts all Christians.
Many indiscretions can trap people. Any indiscretions willingly accepted as not being against God’s will could exclude someone from being a leader in many Christian communities.
A same-sex union is one of many possible conflicts we find difficult to accept in a leader. A person in a same-sex union is proclaiming God sanctions such. This is counter to the Gospel we countenance.
What does this mean for those attending worship or being a member of a congregation? All have sinned, all are loved by God, and all are welcomed by the church. If a same-sex couple came to our churches we would accept them in love and have the utmost patience in teaching them, as we would any other congregation member.
Peter Egel (Hons Psych) B. Ed on behalf of Christian Watchmen’s Fellowship