An Aberdeen congregation and its minister have become the latest to leave the Church of Scotland over its ordination of homosexual clergy.
Gilcomston South’s minister Reverend Dominic Smart has resigned from the Kirk and will start holding separate services in a hotel in March.
Rev Smart said he had no choice: “The decision by the Church of Scotland represented a clear and deliberate move away from the authority of scripture as the word of God and our supreme rule of faith and life.”
He added: “We’ve experienced a great deal of unity and strength from within the congregation and we’re looking forward to moving ahead and doing something new.”
The General Assembly of the Church of Scotland approved the appointment of an openly gay minister to Queen’s Cross Church in Aberdeen in 2009.
In December, St George’s Tron Church in Glasgow was evicted from its building after it left the Kirk over the issue of homosexual clergy.
The Church of Scotland seized the premises in which the congregation had been meeting for more than 70 years.
Rev Smart will lead a congregation in the Copthorne Hotel in Aberdeen on March 10, using the name “Gilcomston Church”.
Although the Church will start off as independent, Rev Smart plans for them to join another denomination and they will look for a permanent venue in which to meet.