Church group's leader transitioning from a man to a woman

In this June 29, 2017, photo, the Rev. Donald Anderson gives an opening prayer for the service in Providence, R.I. The Rhode Island State Council of Churches says its executive minister, Anderson, shared with the board she is transgender and is transitioning. The organization granted Anderson a three-month sabbatical and notes she'll change her name from Donald to Donnie. Anderson, 70, said Monday, May 14, 2018, she would talk about her decision upon returning in the fall. (Kris Craig/Providence Journal via AP)

Kris Craig

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A Rhode Island reverend will be taking a months-long sabbatical while transitioning from a man to a woman.

The Rhode Island State Council of Churches says its executive minister, Dr. Reverend Donald Anderson, shared with the board she is transgender and is transitioning. The organization granted Anderson a three-month sabbatical and notes she'll change her name from Donald to Donnie.

The 70-year-old Anderson said Monday she'll talk about her decision upon returning in the fall. She says it's a personal matter for her and her family but she wants people to know the reason for the sabbatical.

Anderson has served the council for more than 10 years. Anderson has advocated on behalf of the council on issues such as raising the minimum wage and protecting domestic-violence victims.

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