[an error occurred while processing this directive] MORMON CHURCH CANCELS PLANS TO 'EXCOMMUNICATE' FORMER MEMBER

July 17, 2000

San Francisco--A spokesperson for the North America West Area of the Mormon (LDS) church sent a fax to the San Francisco Examiner this morning to let the publication and reporter Carol Ness know that a 'disciplinary council' that was scheduled to discuss the membership of Owen Edwards of San Francisco has been cancelled. The 'council' was apparently cancelled due to a front page story this morning in the Examiner about the church 'excommunicating' people who have formally resigned from the church. Edwards, a gay man and former Mormon, was featured in the article because his bishop had let him know excommunication proceedings had been scheduled to be held on July 23, despite a formal letter of resignation that Owens wrote to the church in late February.

     Examiner reporter Ness called Edwards this morning to let him know that she'd received the fax telling her that the 'council' to discuss Edward's 'membership' had been called off.

     Edwards says he isn't necessarily thrilled that the council has been called off, "because it only means they won't harass ME due to my resignation. What about other people who send in their resignations? Will they be forced to call the media when the church threatens to excommunicate them in response to their resignations? When will the church stop this harassment?" [an error occurred while processing this directive]