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Update 5 p.m. EDT June 14: Members of the Southern Baptist Convention on Wednesday approved an amendment to their constitution that says their churches must have “only men as any kind of pastor or elder as qualified by Scripture.”

The amendment will face another vote at next year’s meeting and must be passed again for it to go into effect.

According to The New York Times, there was no official tally, and “officials rejected a move for a hand count before breaking for lunch.”

Original story:

Delegates at the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention voted overwhelmingly Tuesday to finalize the ouster of two of its member churches that have women as part of their leadership staff.

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The churches include one of the denomination’s largest and most famous — Saddleback Church in California, with a membership of 23,000, that was founded by Rick Warren, author of the bestselling book “The Purpose Driven Life.”

The other church is the small Fern Creek Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky.

The churches were expelled in February because they allow women to take leadership roles in the church, including preaching, something Southern Baptists believe is a role the Bible reserves only for men.

Part of the Southern Baptist Convention’s statement of beliefs says a church’s pastor must be a man.

“While both men and women are gifted for service in the church, the office of pastor is limited to men as qualified by Scripture,” the statement says.

The move by the SBC, which has 13 million members and 47,000 churches, was largely symbolic for Saddleback since the church has not emphasized its Baptist affiliation.

Three other churches that were determined “to be not in friendly cooperation with the Convention due to the churches continuing to have a female functioning in the office of pastor,” did not challenge their expulsion.

The other four churches removed in which women serve as lead or senior pastors are Calvary Baptist Church in Jackson, Mississippi; New Faith Mission Ministry in Griffin, Georgia and St. Timothy’s Christian Baptist Church in Baltimore.

Freedom Church in Vero Beach, Florida, was deemed to be not in friendly cooperation because the church failed to cooperate in resolving concerns regarding an abuse allegation. Freedom Church denied the charge.

“These churches have been valued, cooperating churches for many years, and this decision was not made lightly,” Jared Wellman, the Convention’s executive committee chairman, said in the statement in February. “However, we remain committed to upholding the theological convictions of the S.B.C. and maintaining unity among its cooperating churches,” the Convention said in February.

The churches were given the opportunity to plead their cases before a vote by the members of the Convention was taken. Members voted 9 to 1 against the churches being allowed to remain as Southern Baptists.

Linda Barnes Popham, the pastor at Fern Creek, said she had dedicated her life to Jesus when she was 8 years old, The New York Times reported. She spoke of being taught “to follow to the ends of the earth” whatever Jesus called her to do, and of how her church shares the gospel.

Warren spoke on behalf of Saddleback saying, “No one is asking any Southern Baptist to change their theology.

“I am not asking you to agree with our church. I am asking you to act like Southern Baptists who have historically ‘agreed to disagree’ on dozens of doctrines in order to share a common mission,” he told the newspaper.

He went on to say that the denomination’s theological statement is 4,032 words long and that “Saddleback disagrees with one word,” according to the Times.

Warren has retired from running the church, putting into place a couple who share the duties involved with the church, including preaching sermons.

Neither of the appeals moved the Convention and the churches are no longer Southern Baptists members.

According to the Times, the Convention is scheduled to vote later Wednesday on a proposal to amend its constitution to more clearly and strictly ban women from leadership roles.