Church Fires Drag Dressing Pastor Featured in HBO’s Drag Queen Series

The Rev. Craig Duke has been a Methodist minister for three decades, building a reputation as a staunch advocate of LGBTQ inclusion. His pastoral duties have now been terminated — the result of a bitter rift surfacing in his Indiana church after he sought to demonstrate solidarity by appearing in drag alongside prominent drag queens in the HBO reality series “We’re Here.”

Duke, 62, said he thought most of his 400-member congregation at Newburgh United Methodist Church shared his inclusive views, and he was taken aback when a prominent congregation member, soon backed by other churchgoers, circulated emails attacking him.

“You have thrown NUMC under the bus to elevate a minority of individuals,” said one of the emails. Another, according to Duke, said Satan must be pleased with the discord over LGBTQ rights.

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