Priest resigns because of gay bishop

Sept. 10, 2003 at 4:55 PM

CATONSVILLE, Md., Sept. 10 (UPI) -- A Maryland clergyman has become the first Episcopal priest in the nation to resign because of last month's appointment of an openly gay bishop.

The Washington Times said the Rev. Steven R. Randall will deliver his farewell sermon at St. Timothy's Church in Catonsville, Md., on Sunday.

Randall, in disassociating himself from the Episcopal Church, compared the church to a hijacked airliner. He told the Times he expects about half of the 200-member congregation at St. Timothy's to follow him.

Church leaders last month confirmed the election of Canon V. Gene Robinson, an openly gay clergyman, as the new bishop of New Hampshire.

Randall said he will inaugurate services Sept. 21 at his new congregation, the Anglican Church of Greater Baltimore.

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