Religion

Presbyterian Church in Minnesota Installs Noted Lesbian Pastor, Activist Laurene Lafontaine

| by Dominic Kelly
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A well-known lesbian pastor and activist has a new place of employment at a Presbyterian church in Minnesota.

Community Presbyterian Church in Rochester approved the hire in July, and as of Sunday, Laurene Lafontaine officially became leader of the congregation.

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“Laurene has many important qualities to help us grow as a congregation,” said the church in a statement. “She took over a small struggling church made up of older members who literally had the mindset that they were going out of business and after a year, the congregation began to grow and operate with a surplus.”

According to the church website, Laurene was ordained in 1987 after receiving a Masters of Divinity from the Princeton Theological Seminary in New Jersey. She went on to become a noted LGBT rights activist, as well as starting the AIDS/HIV Interfaith Network of Colorado.

“Serving now as the pastor of Community Presbyterian Church in Rochester, Minnesota is the fulfillment of a lifelong sense of call to ministry in the local church,” says Lafontaine in her statement on the church’s website. “I absolutely love preaching, teaching and getting to know people. I am excited to be here in Rochester, Minnesota!”

A ceremony for her installment took place on Sunday, and several speakers included both LGBT activists and religious leaders.