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'Ordain Women' respond to leader's LDS Church excommunication

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Utah) - The LDS Church has now excommunicated the founder of “Ordain Women.” Her followers claim their leader is devastated. Monday, it's making headlines across the country.
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Utah) - The LDS Church has now excommunicated the founder of “Ordain Women.” Her followers claim their leader is devastated. Monday, it's making headlines across the country.

The founder of the "Ordain Women" movement is no longer a member of the LDS Church.

"I feel very sad, I feel very hurt," said Kate Kelly, Ordain Women Founder.

Sunday during a vigil in Salt Lake City, Kate Kelly shared her fears about her possible excommunication.
Last year she started a group requesting church leaders to ordain women to the priesthood. On Monday the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints emailed her a letter saying:

"...you have persisted in an aggressive effort to persuade other church members to your point of view and that your course of action has threatened to erode the faith of others," said Bishop Mark M. Harrison, Vienna Ward, Oakton Virginia Stake.

The Church officially revoked her membership.

"We were all together when she read the letter and she just started sobbing," said Suzette Smith, Ordain Women spokesperson.

Ordain Women spokesperson Suzette Smith said Kelly is devastated.

"It's a really hard thing to be pulled away from the faith community that you love, and the faith community that you self-identify with," said Smith.

The news of Kelly's excommunication is making national headlines in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, etc. Although the Church is declining to respond outside of Kelly's letter, prior to the announcement, a church spokesperson told ABC 4 Utah there is a limit to questioning church doctrine.

"There is a space for questions, but it is how we ask that is just as important as what we ask, we must not dictate to God what is right for His church," said Ally Isom, LDS Church spokesperson.

As for the question of ordaining women, the group's followers said their campaign doesn't end with Kelly's church membership.

"We intend to move forward with our questions and with the conversation about priesthood," said Smith.

Kelly can appeal the decision if she chooses to, but she'd have to show how the process was unfair and do it in 30 days. Timing may be a problem. ABC 4 Utah is told she's moving to Africa in a few weeks.

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Follow Brian Carlson on Twitter: @briancarlsontv

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