(Memphis) Ronnie Hester wears his sexuality and faith out in the open.
“I don’t quite keep it a secret,” Hester said.
He moved to Memphis eight months ago, and part of building a new life included finding a church to call home.
Hester looked for a church that accepted and loved him for who he was.
That’s what led him to The First Baptist Church of Memphis, where he was baptized two weeks ago.
Several people claiming to be members of the church called WREG Wednesday, outraged.
They said they were not asked it was OK with them for a gay man to be baptized at their church, adding he does not believe as they do.
“I was, you know, shocked to hear it,” Hester said.
He was shocked because he considers First Baptist Church of Memphis to be supportive and accepting of all people.
“But I don’t guess all of the members are on board,” Hester said.
WREG asked the pastor what he thought.
While he wouldn’t talk about a member, Pastor David Breckenridge sent us the following statement:
“We at First Baptist respect the privacy of all of our church members, so we do not comment on our members’ private lives. While our church has never formally adopted a policy concerning sexuality, for many years we have had straight, gay, and lesbian members serving in our church. We have never had any qualifications for baptism or membership other than profession of faith in Christ. First Baptist has always been a church whose doors are open to anyone who seeks to follow Christ.”
Hester said he still loves the church, but is deciding whether on not he will go back following the incident.