CORONA DEL MAR — A minister suspended after allegations by several female parishioners of sexual misconduct has dropped an appeal of his suspension.
The Rev. Donald Kutz, former pastor of the Community Congregational Church, withdrew his appeal this week to the Southern California Conference of the United Church of Christ, according to the Rev. Charles Schepel, who headed Kutz's disciplinary review committee.
Kutz was suspended earlier this month after an investigation by church officials into allegations by six current and former church members of sexual harassment and exploitation. The allegations, none of which involved criminal charges, ranged from inappropriate sexual innuendoes to sexual involvement with members of the congregation.
He has denied any wrongdoing and, according to Schepel, has expressed a desire to return to the ministry despite the withdrawal of his appeal. Schepel would not say under what conditions Kutz might return.