*An eastern Kentucky church in the headlines since members voted to bar mixed-race couples from joining the congregation overturned that decision Sunday, saying it welcomes all believers.
Stacy Stepp, pastor of the Gulnare Free Will Baptist Church in Pike County, told The Associated Press that the vote by nine people last week was declared null and void after it was determined that new bylaws can’t run contrary to local, state or national laws. He said the proposal was discriminatory, therefore it couldn’t be adopted.
Stepp said about 30 people who attended church services voted on a new resolution that welcomes “believers into our fellowship regardless of race, creed or color.”
The issue came up at the tiny all-white Appalachian church after Stella Harville, the daughter of church secretary Dean Harville, visited over the summer with her boyfriend Ticha Chikuni, who is from Zimbabwe, and the two sang for the congregation.
Harville said he was approached in August by Melvin Thompson, the church member who crafted the resolution to bar mixed-race couples, and was told that his daughter and her boyfriend were no longer allowed to sing at the church. Thompson has said he is not racist and called the matter an “internal affair.
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article courtesy of Eurweb.com