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Mormon Church Excommunicates Advocate For Female Priests

Kate Kelly, a Mormon and founder of Ordain Women, wipes away a tear during a vigil on Sunday in Salt Lake City. Church leaders have ruled to excommunicate her for advocating in favor of female priests.
Kate Kelly, a Mormon and founder of Ordain Women, wipes away a tear during a vigil on Sunday in Salt Lake City. Church leaders have ruled to excommunicate her for advocating in favor of female priests.

An all-male panel of Mormon leaders has found a prominent member of the group Ordain Women guilty of apostasy and ordered that she be excommunicated from the church.

On its website, Ordain Women quoted from an email that Kate Kelly received informing her of the decision by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

"Our determination is that you be excommunicated for conduct contrary to the laws and order of the Church," the email said, adding that she may no longer "wear temple garments or contribute tithes and offerings ... take the sacrament, hold a Church calling, give a talk in Church, offer a public prayer in behalf of the class or congregation in a Church meeting, or vote in the sustaining of Church officers."

However, the email said that she could be readmitted after a year "if you show true repentance and satisfy the conditions imposed below while you are no longer a member, you may be readmitted by baptism and confirmation."

The website says that Kelly did not attend the June 22 hearing and that she was convicted in absentia.

"Instead, [she] held a vigil in Salt Lake City with about 200 supporters," The Associated Press says.

"Mormon officials aren't discussing Kelly's case," the AP writes, "but say that disciplinary hearings are held when members' actions contradict church doctrine and lead others astray."

Prior to the decision, she was quoted by the AP as saying: "I don't feel like Mormonism is something that washes off. ... That identity is not something that they can take from me."

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