An expert on polity in the United Methodist Church is hoping that honest and integrity will prevail in an ongoing case involving church discipline.
Last October, the Methodist Committee on Investigation decided not to certify charges against Ohio pastor David Meredith of being a "self-avowed practicing homosexual" and for "immorality."
John Lomperis, United Methodist director at the Institute on Religion and Democracy, says the committee showed "an extreme lack of integrity and being blatantly and knowingly dishonest" as the pastor publicly came years ago announcing he was married to a man.
Now the case is being appealed to a higher body.
"And if they rule with any sort of integrity or basic intellectual honesty," says Lomperis, "they will overturn the lower committee's decision and say, No, indeed, there's clearly evidence. It's blatantly obvious he's in violation of the standards."
Meredith has an agenda, Lomperis alleges, of undermining the church from within.
"If he had an ounce of integrity," say Lomperis, "David Meredith would resign as a United Methodist minister, and then if he really wanted to be a pastor for some reason he could join the Unitarian Universalists."
The case could progress all the way to the judicial council, which is similar to the U.S. Supreme Court in the United Methodist Church.