A three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled today that gay marriages cannot resume in California until after the court hears an appeal from the groups who fought to uphold Proposition 8.

The appeals court scheduled a hearing on the appeal for the week of Dec. 6, and ordered the sides to address the issue of who has standing to appeal the ballot measure that barred gay couples from marrying in California.

U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker struck down Prop 8 in a landmark ruling Aug. 4, holding that the ban on gay marriage violates the U.S. Constitution's guarantees of due process and equal protection.

On Thursday, Walker declined to permanently stay his ruling during the appeals process, but held that gay marriages could not resume in California before Aug. 18, giving the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals time to rule on a possible stay.

Breaking: No gay marriages in Calif. until at least December

The appeals court did that today, ending hopes that same-sex couples would be able to resume marrying in California this month.

The complete order from Judges Leavy, Hawkins and Thomas:

Appellants’ motion for a stay of the district court’s order of August 4, 2010, pending appeal is GRANTED. The court sua sponte orders that this appeal be expedited pursuant to Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 2. The provisions of Ninth Circuit Rule 31-2.2(a) (pertaining to grants of time extensions) shall not apply to this appeal. This appeal shall be calendared during the week of December 6, 2010, at The James R. Browning Courthouse in San Francisco, California.

The previously established briefing schedule is vacated. The opening brief is now due September 17, 2010. The answering brief is due October 18, 2010. The reply brief is due November 1, 2010. In addition to any issues appellants wish to raise on appeal, appellants are directed to include in their opening brief a discussion of why this appeal should not be dismissed for lack of Article III standing. See Arizonans For Official English v. Arizona, 520 U.S. 43, 66 (1997).