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Pastor at St. Luke ‘Community’ UMC steps down Sam Hodges, Jan 23, 2012
By Sam Hodges Managing Editor
DALLAS—The Rev. Tyrone Gordon has surrendered his ordination credentials and resigned as senior pastor of St. Luke “Community” United Methodist of Dallas, effective Feb. 15, according to a statement released by Bishop Earl Bledsoe of the North Texas Conference.
Bishop Bledsoe said Mr. Gordon had been the subject of complaints from individuals in and outside of the congregation. The complaints were of “both an administrative and judicial nature,” the bishop said, but did not provide details.
St. Luke, with 5,136 members at the end of 2010, is the largest predominately African-American church in the North Texas Conference and one of the largest such churches in the UMC.
Its well-known pastor emeritus, the Rev. Zan Holmes, will serve as interim pastor until another appointment can be made, Bishop Bledsoe said.
Bishop Bledsoe said the judicial complaints against Mr. Gordon “could not be resolved through the supervisory process” and had been referred to counsel for the church, as provided for under the Book of Discipline, the UMC’s law book. From the counsel, the matter would go to a committee on investigations that would decide whether reasonable grounds exist for a church trial.
Mr. Gordon’s decision to resign and surrender his credentials ends the church’s investigation of him, Bishop Bledsoe said.
A call to Mr. Gordon’s office was not returned. Bishop Bledsoe said Mr. Gordon offered “both private and personal” reasons for stepping down.
“My hope and prayer is that we will continue to pray for all parties and to respect Rev. Gordon’s privacy and personal decision in this matter,” Bishop Bledsoe said. He added in his statement that he would not be commenting further.
In 2009, Mr. Gordon did an interview with Faith & Leadership, a Duke Divinity School website. The introduction to the interview noted that he earned a master of divinity degree from Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University and led Saint Mark UMC in Wichita, Kan., to significant membership growth before coming to St. Luke.