Active gays and lesbians in the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. will soon be eligible to serve as clergy.
A change in the church's constitution to take effect this Sunday clears the way for ordaining homosexuals in committed relationships.
The requirement that clergy should either be faithful in a traditional marriage or chaste in singleness will be dropped.
However, regional governing bodies within the church can still decide not to ordain gay clergy.
The change was approved last year by the church's national assembly after a majority vote from the denominations 173 presbyteries.