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Presbyterians reject redefinition of marriage from 'between a woman and a man' to 'between two people'

BY RACHEL ZOLL, AP RELIGION WRITER

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) narrowly rejected a proposal to revise the traditional definition of marriage on Friday, a year after it struck down a barrier to ordaining gays.

The Presbyterian General Assembly, meeting in Pittsburgh, voted 338-308 against changing how marriage was defined in the church constitution from a "civil contract between a woman and a man" to a "covenant between two people."

Other mainline Protestant churches have approved gay ordination or permitted individual parishes to celebrate same-sex unions in recent years. The U.S. Episcopal Church, which is holding its national convention through next week in Indianapolis, will consider prayer services for same-sex unions. However, only one major mainline group, the United Church of Christ, has endorsed same-sex marriage outright.

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