First transgender priest ordained in Minneapolis

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Shannon Kearns made history in Minneapolis Saturday as he became the first transgender priest to be ordained in the North American Old Catholic Church, KSTP-TV reports.

Kearns was born a woman but transitioned into a man in his late 20s, KSTP says.

The North American Old Catholic Church -- one of the largest Old Catholic bodies in the United States -- describes itself as a progressive Catholic Church that welcomes all people.

The ordination hasn't come without some sort of controversy. According to KSTP, the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis said in a a statement that the North American Old Catholic Church "is neither affiliated nor in communion with the Catholic Church. Their activities are not supported by this archdiocese, the Catholic Church, or any entity or organization affiliated with this archdiocese or the Catholic Church."

Kearns wasn't surprised by the Archdiocese's stand, telling KSTP, "The Roman Catholic Church would never ordain someone like me," yet added that it "doesn't diminish his connection to the religion."

Kearns will reportedly being opening a new parish in Minneapolis called the House of the Transfiguration.

See KSTP's report on Kearns below.

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