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CUCC to install new senior pastor

Claremont United Church of Christ is embracing diversity with the installment of its new senior pastor. The congregation has selected the Rev. Eileen Gebbie—a gay, married woman—as the church’s new leader. Ms. Gebbie will be installed as senior pastor during a special service this Sunday, September 8, beginning at 3 p.m.

“It was a historic moment in the life of our church,” Ms. Gebbie said. “All other senior pastors have been straight, married, white men with children. As I said to the congregation, their choice to call a gay, tattooed lady in an age-gap marriage with no children, but a new puppy, is not normal, but a sign that God is still speaking.”

The Rev. Linda Jaramillo, one of the UCC’s National Officers from the denomination’s Cleveland-based headquarters, will be a guest preacher at the installment beginning at 3:15 p.m. At 3:30 p.m., Ms. Gebbie will receive tokens from the community, as a symbol of her larger obligations, and the Claremont UCC youth group will serve communion at 3:45 p.m.

Ms. Gebbie joined CUCC as associate pastor in February of 2012 and was called to serve as senior pastor in May. Goals in her new role include utilizing her nonprofit skills to improve financial and organizational management, empowering lay leaders to be more engaged in the life of the church and deepening community partnerships.

CUCC?is located at 233 Harrison Ave. in Claremont

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