Frank Schaefer (minister)

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Frank Schaefer
Rev. Franklyn Schaefer.JPG
Franklyn Schaefer

(1961-12-07) December 7, 1961 (age 58)

Franklyn "Frank" Schaefer is a German-American author and an LGBTQ advocate. He was formerly an ordained minister in the United Methodist Church.

Schaefer established a popular Internet site for the support of Christian educators and ministers, a forum for the discussion and exchange of resources, called Desperate Preacher's Site, in 1996.[1]


In 2013, he was tried by a United Methodist court for officiating at his son's same-sex marriage. He was defrocked on December 19, 2013, when he refused to uphold the Book of Discipline in its entirety, which would have meant to denounce same-sex marriage rights.[2]

Speaking engagements and activism[edit]

Following his defrocking, Schaefer became a speaker and activist. Although he was reinstated by the Northeastern Jurisdictional Committee on Appeals on June 26, 2014 (which was upheld by the Judicial Council on October 25, 2014),[3][4] he continues to advocate for human rights while also working in a new United Methodist parish in Isla Vista, California.



  • Franklyn Schaefer: Defrocked: How A Father's Act of Love Shook the United Methodist Church, Autobiography, paperback (with Sherri Wood Emmons), Chalice Press, 2014. ISBN 978-0827244993


Schaefer has been interviewed on the TV shows Good Morning America, The View, Hardball with Chris Matthews, Anderson Cooper 360°, The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, and TakePart Live, and for the documentary An Act of Love.[5]


  • Franklyn Schaefer: Guitar Reflections: Then & Now, audio CD (instrumental, folk) JavaCasa Music, 2013.
  • Franklyn Schaefer: Love Like An Ocean, audio CD (Contemporary Christian) JavaCasa Music, 2011.
  • Franklyn Schaefer: Keep On Smiling, audio CD (Contemporary Country) JavaCasa Music, 2008.


  1. ^ Baglo, Ferdy (1 November 2000). "Site Hopes to Help Pastors in a Sunday Sermon Crunch". Christianity Today. Retrieved 23 June 2017.
  2. ^ "Defrocking of Minister Widens Split Over Gays". New York Times. 2013-12-19. Retrieved 2015-08-19.
  3. ^ "Frank Schaefer, Pennsylvania pastor who performed same-sex marriage, keeps ordination". CBS News. 2014-10-27. Retrieved 2015-08-19.
  4. ^ Emma Margolin (2014-10-23). "'Refrocked' pastor: I will never be afraid again to speak out". MSNBC. Retrieved 2015-08-19.
  5. ^

External links[edit]