*A gay Atlanta pastor and his partner who have been at the center of a battle over the treatment of gay clergy by the nation’s largest Lutheran denomination are being reinstated to the denomination’s clergy roster, church officials announced Tuesday.

The Rev. Bradley Schmeling and his partner, the Rev. Darin Easler, have been approved for reinstatement, the Chicago-based Evangelical Lutheran Church in America said in a news release. Their reinstatement comes about eight months after the denomination voted to allow gays and lesbians in committed relationships to serve as clergy, and about three weeks after the ELCA’s church council officially revised the church’s policy on gay ministers.

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