Timeline to the Trial of Rev. Amy E. DeLong
September 19, 2009 – In keeping with the ordination question, “Are you willing to minister with all persons without regard to … gender (or) sexual orientation …?” (UM Book of Discipline, ¶335.c.4), Rev. Amy DeLong officiated at a Holy Union for a same-gender loving couple.
November 5, 2009 – Amy and Val celebrated 15 years of love for one another by registering as Domestic Partners after Wisconsin Governor Doyle had signed domestic partnerships into law on June 29th, 2009.
February 4, 2010 – Rev. DeLong submitted her annual Appointment to Extension Ministry Report, which included the Holy Union she had performed.
February 10, 2010 – Rev. DeLong receives a letter inviting her to “begin a supervisory process” to discuss the details of her Extension Ministry report.
February 23, 2010 – Rev. DeLong attends a meeting scheduled with Assistant to the Bishop, Rev. Steve Polster, and District Superintendent Rev. Jorge Mayorga Solis (Rev. Mayorga Solis recorded the meeting incorrectly in his calendar and did not appear at the scheduled time and date). At this meeting, in addition to sharing documentation and details about the Holy Union, Rev. DeLong also presents a copy of her Domestic Partnership documentation. Rev. DeLong is told by Rev. Polster that a “formal complaint would be drawn up and a time line for that would be within the next 30 days” (as recorded in meeting minutes).
March 16, 2010 – Rev. DeLong attends a meeting with Bishop Linda Lee, Rev. Polster, and Rev. Mayorga Solis in Black River Falls, WI, to discuss the implications of her truth-telling.
June 17, 2010 – After months of waiting for an initial, signed complaint, one comes dated the day after Annual Conference. The complaint is signed by Rev. Mayorga Solis.
June 29, 2010 – During a supervisory meeting, via conference call with Bishop Lee, Rev. Mayorga Solis, and Rev. Steve Polster, Rev. DeLong is informed that the judicial process will continue.
July 20, 2010 – Rev. Jaime Nolle agrees to serve as Counsel for the Church.
August 10, 2010 -Rev. Nolle resigns as Church Counsel.
October 7, 2010 – With a Disciplinary deadline for due process pressing, Rev. David Busker agrees to serve as Counsel for the Church.
October 8, 2010 – Rev. Busker forwards official charges to the Conference Committee on Investigation who will decide if the facts are sufficient for a trial. Confidential information was also inappropriately sent to Rev. Ethan Larson.
October 28, 2010 – Rev. DeLong responds in writing to the Chairperson of the Committee on Investigation (Mr. Jon Furlow) and the Church Counsel regarding the charges being brought.
November ??, 2010 – The Committee on Investigation holds conference call with the Rev. Busker (Church Counsel), Rev. Mayorga Solis (the Complainant), Rev. DeLong (the Respondent) and Rev. Scott Campbell, (Amy’s Counsel), to determine procedures for a Hearing.
December 7, 2010 – The Committee on Investigation holds a Hearing at the conference offices in Sun Prairie to determine if there is sufficient evidence to support the charges. Rev. DeLong’s Statement to the Committee on Investigation is available in this packet.
December 7, 2010 – Rev. Busker resigns as Counsel for the Church, immediately following the Committee on Investigation hearing.
December 10, 2010 – Committee on Investigation publishes their findings (available in this packet)
January 11, 2011 – Rev. Donald Frank agrees to serve as Counsel for the Church.
January 27, 2011– Bishop Lee sends Amy a notice of trial details: Date of Trial: April 11, 2011
Location: First United Methodist Church, Appleton, Wisconsin Presiding Officer: retired Bishop Bruce Blake
February 15,2011 – Rev. Frank resigns as Counsel for the Church.
March 7, 2011- Bishop Blake recuses himself as Presiding Officer for the trial.
March 15, 2011 – Bishop Lee informs clergy members of the Wisconsin Annual Conference that the April trial date has been postponed while she searches again for a Counsel for the Church and for a Presiding Officer.
March 31, 2011 – The Wisconsin Episcopal Office announces in the Appleton First UMC April newsletter, “Given what any host congregation would endure, we have reconsidered having the trial in a church building and will seek an alternate site.”
April 11, 2011 – Bishop Linda Lee announces the following trial details: Date of Trial: June 21-23, 2011
Location: Peace United Methodist Church, Kaukauna, WI
Presiding Officer: Retired Bishop Clay F. Lee
Church Counsel: Rev. Thomas Lambrecht
May 3, 2011 – Conference call to set trial details with Bishop Clay Lee (Presiding Officer), Rev. Lambrecht (Church Counsel), Rev. Timothy Albrecht (Trial Secretary and Pastor of Kaukauna: Peace UMC), Rev. Campbell (Amy’s Counsel), and Rev. DeLong. In conjunction with further conversation with Rev. Albrecht, trial space will be limited to a 40×60 Fellowship Hall with one room available for Rev. Amy’s Defense Team. No requested worship space or other space on the grounds is granted.
To Be Continued