Key point 6-10.03. The civil courts will not resolve a dispute contesting the discipline of a church member if the member failed to "exhaust" remedies available under the church's own governing documents.
The courts will not review church membership expulsions unless the expelled members have exhausted all available procedures within their church for obtaining review of their expulsion. To illustrate, one court refused to resolve a lawsuit brought by a dismissed church member challenging his dismissal since he had not pursued all of the remedies provided by his local church and a parent denomination for the review of such actions. First Baptist Church v. State of Ohio, 591 F. Supp. 676 (S.D. Ohio 1983); State ex rel. Nelson v. Ellis, 140 So.2d 194 (La. 1962) aff'd, 151 So.2d 544 (La. 1963); Rodyk v. Ukrainian Autocephalic Orthodox Church, 296 N.Y.S.2d 496 (1968), aff'd, ...
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