Posted by Kendall Harmon

On Day 7, ECUSA finally got to the meat of the matter by calling an acknowledged expert in South Carolina’s religious and non-profit corporations law, Professor Martin McWilliams of the University of South Carolina law school. He offered an elaborate theory as to why the diocese’s vote to secede from the national Church was invalid under South Carolina law: according to him, the diocese incorporated the national Church’s constitution and canons into its articles by reference, holus bolus, when it simply mentioned them in passing. Then, because the national governing documents (as amended from year to year) were part and parcel of the diocese’s corporate articles, it could not change those articles in any manner that was inconsistent with the Church’s governing documents.

This theory, however, had a hole in it so wide that one could drive a truck through it, and it was a simple matter for Bishop Lawrence’s counsel, on their cross-examination of Prof. McWilliams, to discredit it completely. First Prof. McWilliams conceded that there was no language in the national governing documents – even if they had been incorporated into the articles by the brief reference to them – which forbade a diocese from seceding, or from amending its articles in any manner whatsoever. And with that concession, any effect Prof. McWilliams might have had with his testimony was finished. For he next had to concede that the Diocese was wholly within its rights under South Carolina law when it amended its articles so as to remove its language of accession to the national Church.

After that major concession, the case for ECUSA and its rump group never regained its momentum, and their attorneys became ever more desperate in their tactics as they tried to recoup lost ground. On Day 8 they tried to call an expert witness they had not bothered to disclose by Judge Goodstein’s deadline, and she blocked the testimony after giving the hapless attorney trying to introduce it a good tongue-lashing for disregarding her rules.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: AnalysisEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC Conflicts* AdminFeatured (Sticky)* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch HistoryParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted August 1, 2014 at 6:42 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC Conflicts* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* Theology

0 Comments
Posted July 26, 2014 at 9:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Gender is really not an issue, she said in a phone conversation a fortnight ago, just before travelling to the UK to preach at the annual pilgrimage in St Albans. "It's been a very minor theme. When I was first elected, there was profound objection from a couple of bishops who did not think that women should be ordained. We've long ago gotten past that: they decided they didn't want to be part of the Episcopal Church.

"My gender is really beside the point. I think it was more significant for the Episcopal Church that I was the first scientifically trained Presiding Bishop, and the first Presiding Bishop who was elected from the Western part of the US; and I'm probably the first one who was elected not having spent one's whole adult life in the Church as a primary vocation."
....
"There is a long history of disagreement in the Episcopal Church. At heart, it's about how people read scripture. Some people argue for the primacy of scripture, and won't accept that there are other sources of authority."

Read it all.

I will take comments on this submitted by email only to KSHarmon[at]mindspring[dot]com.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)CoE BishopsEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori


Posted July 17, 2014 at 6:15 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

We have also decided to name a (Special) Legislative Committee on Marriage for this General Convention to ensure that the work of the Task Force on Marriage and resolutions related to the rapidly shifting contexts of civil marriage in the United States and in several other parts of the world can be given appropriate consideration. This will also make it possible for the Prayer Book, Liturgy & Music legislative committee to give full consideration to the other business that will come before it.

Read it all.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)General Convention House of Deputies President Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesMarriage & FamilyReligion & CultureSexuality--Civil Unions & Partnerships* Economics, PoliticsPolitics in GeneralState Government* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral TheologyTheology: Scripture

1 Comments
Posted July 10, 2014 at 4:40 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

[Jim] Lewis testified that the votes to withdraw from TEC passed with 90 percent or more support of the convention clergy and delegates. He also testified about the misuse of Diocesan symbols and seals by TEC and TECSC, and their intention to present themselves as the Diocese.

Lewis also shared with the court copies of historic documents that showed that the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina existed in 1785 – and that the Diocese was one of several post-colonial diocese to establish The Episcopal Church in the new United States. TEC has repeatedly claimed that the Diocese cannot exist outside the Episcopal Church – even though it did historically.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted July 9, 2014 at 4:40 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

After a flurry of last-minute emergency motions and appeals, the so-called "Episcopal Church in South Carolina" rump group ("ECSC") has run out of maneuvers to delay the start of the scheduled trial next week before Circuit Judge Diane Goodstein.

Well -- they did manage to delay the start by one day. They had argued, in a last-minute motion for a continuance, that they had not had sufficient time to complete thirty-four depositions of persons familiar with each of the individual parishes who joined Bishop Lawrence's Diocese of South Carolina as co-plaintiffs in the case. And Judge Goodstein denied their motion to continue the trial, but ordered them to complete all 34 depositions this Monday, July 7.

Then ECSC overreached....

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* AdminFeatured (Sticky)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted July 5, 2014 at 12:18 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* AdminFeatured (Sticky)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

3 Comments
Posted July 3, 2014 at 4:23 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

You can read the article here but only if you read it alongside the A.S. Haley .



Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC Conflicts* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted June 28, 2014 at 1:02 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Local Episcopalians hoping to reclaim millions of dollars in church property, which is now controlled by those who split six years ago from the national Episcopal Church, are taking their case to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Leaders of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth who remain faithful to the U.S. Episcopal Church filed a petition Thursday for a writ of certiorari with the nation’s highest court.

The petition asks the U.S. Supreme Court to review the decision of the Texas Supreme Court on Aug. 30, 2013, overturning a Fort Worth lower court’s ruling in January 2011 that awarded property and holdings in the 24-county diocese to those loyal to the national church.

The Texas Supreme Court called for a rehearing on property matters in Judge John Chupp’s 141st District Court based on “neutral principles” of Texas law. The “deference” principles used in the earlier decision gave weight to the hierarchical structure of the U.S. Episcopal Church and its claim of ownership of all church properties.

Read it all.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Fort Worth* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

2 Comments
Posted June 23, 2014 at 5:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori

0 Comments
Posted June 14, 2014 at 9:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Culture-WatchGlobalizationReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeEnergy, Natural Resources* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesLutheran* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted June 7, 2014 at 3:09 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

In a hearing Thursday, May 22, before the 141st District Court, the Hon. John Chupp set the course for the conclusion of the suit filed against the Diocese and diocesan Corporation over five years ago.

Attorneys for the Diocese successfully argued against consolidation of the case, which would have re-attached portions that were not part of the 2011 Summary Judgment that was appealed to the state Supreme Court. Judge Chupp signed an order denying the proposed consolidation and clearing the way for a new Summary Judgment hearing. Additionally, local TEC parties sought to delay the date of that hearing until mid-2015, but the judge set a date before the end of 2014, much closer to the timeline proposed by the Diocese. The hearing date is Wednesday, Dec. 17; filing deadlines will be set in advance of the hearing.

We give thanks for the positive results of this hearing and continue to pray for God’s guidance and provision.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Fort Worth* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted May 23, 2014 at 6:28 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)House of Deputies President Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

1 Comments
Posted May 6, 2014 at 3:45 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted May 3, 2014 at 11:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

In compliance with the mandate issued by the Texas Supreme Court on March 21st, today the 141st District Court in Fort Worth agreed to move forward with a new trial in the property suit brought five years ago by The Episcopal Church against the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth. It is anticipated that the next major event in the proceedings will be a hearing on motion for summary judgment sometime this fall, when neutral principles of law concerning trusts and property ownership in the State of Texas will be applied in the dispute.

On Thursday morning Judge John Chupp heard discussion on both sides, then ruled on two motions. He denied a motion by TEC to stay the resumption of proceedings in his court, which would have postponed the case further while TEC considers an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court; and he ordered the return of the $100,000 cash bond posted by the Diocese in October 2011 in connection with our appeal to the state Supreme Court. His order also terminates other conditions of the supersedeas bond.

Commenting on the result, diocesan attorney Scott Brister noted, “The judge ruled with us. It's time to move forward and finish this suit.”

“We are grateful to be relieved of the obligations of the supersedeas order,” added diocesan chancellor David Weaver. “We appreciate the continued prayers of our congregations as we navigate our way through the civil justice system.”

In the near future our attorneys will present the trial court with a proposed scheduling order to move the case forward in compliance with the Texas Supreme Court's opinion of August 30, 2013.

The Diocese is delighted to be on a path toward the conclusion of a lengthy and costly legal process. Bishop Iker said, “This is a great encouragement to us, and we look forward to the day when all these legal proceedings are behind us and we can get on with the mission of the Church without the distraction of litigation."

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Fort Worth* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted April 24, 2014 at 3:01 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

First came the ruling against TEC in the direct appeal we brought to the Texas Supreme Court, issued on August 30. Second came the denial of TEC’s request for the court to rehear (or reconsider) that ruling. And now comes their third loss, on April 17. The high court has denied TEC’s motion to recall the mandate it sent to the trial court, which would have “stayed the proceedings” (stopped the legal process in Texas) while they try to get a review of our case from the U.S Supreme Court. Apparently the state Justices agreed with our attorneys that it is highly unlikely the U.S. Supreme Court will review the case at this stage. Nonetheless, TEC has until June 19 to seek review at the national level.

The next step in the litigation here in Fort Worth is a hearing at 9 a.m. on Thursday, April 24, in the courtroom of Judge John Chupp, where we have requested that he set aside the supersedeas order and refund to the Diocese the $100,000 cash bond we posted two years ago in order to maintain possession of our property. With his original decision having now been reversed by the Texas Supreme Court, there are no legal grounds for the order to remain in effect.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Fort Worth* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted April 22, 2014 at 3:10 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch Year / Liturgical SeasonsEaster

8 Comments
Posted April 21, 2014 at 3:06 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

In a brief order filed...[yesterday], the Supreme Court of South Carolina has granted the motion filed earlier by Bishop Lawrence, his diocesan trustees and individual parishes to transfer to it jurisdiction of the current appeals brought by ECUSA and its rump group in an attempt to delay the trial of the main action set for next July in front of Judge Goodstein.

The Supreme Court's action came just after ECUSA and its rump group had filed a petition for rehearing with the Court of Appeals, asking a full panel to overrule a single judge's earlier order dismissing that appeal, which seeks review of an order by Judge Goodstein denying the rump group access to attorney-client communications between Bishop Lawrence and his counsel, Alan Runyon.

The appeal raises the question of whether the rump group may be seen in law as the continuing successor to the Episcopal Diocese, or whether it is a new entity that began its legal life with a special convention in January 2013 -- regardless of whether ECUSA treats it for religious purposes as a continuing "diocese" in the Church. The rump group contends that they are the legal successor to the Diocese, and so are entitled to see prior communications between the Episcopal Diocese and its attorneys.

But the Episcopal Diocese is very much alive as a legal entity under South Carolina law, with its same Constitution and Canons (amended so as to remove any affiliations with ECUSA), as the rump group has found out in defeat after defeat these past fifteen months.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted April 8, 2014 at 11:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The South Carolina Supreme Court has intervened in a lawsuit and granted the Diocese of South Carolina’s Motion to Transfer jurisdiction from the Court of Appeals to the Supreme Court. This may effectively prevent The Episcopal Church (TEC) and its local subsidiary, The Episcopal Church in South Carolina (TECSC), from using serial appeals to further delay a trial to prevent the two groups from seizing Diocese of South Carolina property.

The Supreme Court decision comes days after TEC and TECSC filed new appeals apparently aimed at delaying the discovery process in advance of the trial that is scheduled to start on July 7. While the Supreme Court ruling does not prevent the denomination from filing appeals, it eliminates the time-consuming step of first going to the South Carolina Court of Appeals.


Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

11 Comments
Posted April 7, 2014 at 2:24 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Bishops are ‘growing together as a house more deeply’

Read it all and you can find more information there.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC Bishops

3 Comments
Posted March 27, 2014 at 5:31 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

From here:
For [the National Episcopal Church at] 815 [Second Avenue in New York City] to continue to pour money into the current property litigation in both those States is nothing less than an actionable waste of charitable resources on a purely punitive mission, and as such is a breach of fiduciary duty at the highest level.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

5 Comments
Posted March 24, 2014 at 6:02 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Court of Appeals effectively said it will not tolerate legal shenanigans to delay a trial to decide whether the denomination may seize South Carolina property, including churches and the diocesan symbols. In asking the Court of Appeals to dismiss the action, the Diocese of South Carolina argued that TECSC is appealing a court order that is “unappealable”.

South Carolina’s Court of Appeals justices agreed.

“We are grateful that the court recognized that TEC and TECSC are misusing the judicial system to delay resolution of this case,” said the Rev. Jim Lewis, Canon to the Ordinary of the Diocese. “Their strategy of using legal motions to delay court decisions caused eight months to be wasted when they asked the federal court to override the state court injunction. As in that matter, the courts sided with the Diocese of South Carolina.”

TEC has a long history of dragging out legal battles, apparently in hopes of draining the resources of parishes and dioceses it seeks to punish for leaving the denomination. According to the latest published reports, TEC has spent more than $40 million on litigation in the past few years. TEC routinely appeals court decisions in hopes of wearing down its opposition – and to intimidate parishes and dioceses that wish to leave the denomination.

Read it all.

The background to this story is here.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

13 Comments
Posted March 18, 2014 at 4:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Most Reverend Katharine Jefferts Schori, Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, will visit Nashotah House Theological Seminary on May 1, 2014. The invitation was made by the Dean/President the Right Reverend Edward Salmon, Jr at the request of several Episcopal seminarians studying at the House in order that she might become better acquainted with the life, character, and programs of the seminary and its community. Given the untimely and tragic death of one of those students, the Reverend Deacon Terry Star, a second year student from the Diocese of North Dakota who suffered a fatal heart attack on March 4, she has been invited to offer the encomium homily honoring Deacon Star following Evensong.

Deacon Star had served with Bishop Jefferts Schori on the Executive Council of the Episcopal Church. Her visit and homily will give the community unique insights into his promising life of ministry cut short by this tragedy.

Read it all.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* TheologySeminary / Theological Education

38 Comments
Posted March 13, 2014 at 9:59 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch Year / Liturgical SeasonsLent

3 Comments
Posted March 6, 2014 at 12:05 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

The National Council of FIFNA endorses and affirms the ACNA College of Bishops’ statement (See below) issued on Feb 25, 2014, regarding the invitation to Dr. Katharine Jefferts Schori to preach at Nashotah House.

In the interest of restoring “the trust that this particular invitation has seriously shaken,” we request that the invitation either be rescinded or that the venue be changed to an academic lecture by Dr. Katharine Jefferts Schori in a non-liturgical context, followed by a time for discussion and response.

Read it all

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* TheologySeminary / Theological Education

2 Comments
Posted February 27, 2014 at 8:41 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori has not ruled out seeking a second nine year term as Presiding Bishop and Primate of the Episcopal Church of the USA.

Her comments came amidst a wide ranging interview broadcast on 25 Feb 2014 interview Kansas City National Public Radio affiliate station KCUR.

Asked about the sharp decline in membership since the 1960s, Bishop Jefferts Schori said the decline did not worry her. While there were fewer Episcopalians today, they were nonetheless better Episcopalians. The “membership levels of 50 years ago are not reflective of the faith” of the people in the pews she noted.

Read it all.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

3 Comments
Posted February 27, 2014 at 5:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Leaders of the Episcopal Church in Alabama were vocal in their belief that slavery was a benign institution. "Its members tended to be disproportionaately slaveowners," Vaughn said. "They believed there wasn't any discrepancy between the Christian message and slave ownership. They didn't see any conflict at all. They were blinded by their financial self-interests."

One of the towering but controversial figures in Alabama's church history was Bishop C.C.J. Carpenter, who was scolded by both the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in "Letter from Birmingham Jail" and by Episcopal seminarian Jonathan Myrick Daniels, who took part in marches in Selma in 1965 and was killed in Hayneville protecting a black girl from a shotgun blast. Daniels defied Carpenter, coming to Alabama in spite of Carpenter's warning to outside agitators. Daniels and other Episcopal seminarians picketed Carpenter House, the diocesan headquarters in Birmingham, and wrote that "The Carpenter of Birmingham must not be allowed to forever deny the Carpenter of Nazareth," in a harsh letter to Carpenter.

"I think Carpenter was a great bishop in many ways," Vaughn said. "He's remembered as a kindly, warm grandfatherly figure. He increased membership; he increased the budget. He just didn't get it though when it came to the civil rights movement."

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC Bishops* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch HistoryParish MinistryMinistry of the LaityMinistry of the Ordained* Culture-WatchBooksRace/Race RelationsReligion & Culture* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted February 27, 2014 at 5:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Please take the time to read them in order (from bottom to top). An excerpt follows:
My experience at both Trinity and Nashotah House has led me to conclude:

1. You can be an Anglican seminary outside the control of the Episcopal Church and still survive.
2. You cannot be a seminary in the Episcopal Church and remain orthodox.

In witness to that, I point to the following news I received today: Bishop Iker Resigns in Protest From Nashotah House Board (because Bp. Salmon has invited Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori to preach in Nashotah House's Chapel), an event that is shocking and tragic to many alumni.

Just as my "getting the House in Trouble" by reaching out to the AMiA and the ACNA and starting a congregation in the seminary chapel may have been the low point (as some would reckon it) of my deanship, the scandal of inviting Katharine Jefferts Schori to preach in the seminary chapel will probably go down as the low point of Bp. Salmon's deanship. I can only say that I would put the low point of my deanship up against the low point of Bp. Salmon's deanship any day. (I would also gladly compare the high points of my deanship with the high points of his.)

In Bp. Salmon's first interview as Dean and President, Doug LeBlanc reported:
Salmon said he plans to strengthen relationships, both among seminary faculty and staff and between the seminary and bishops of the Episcopal Church. (Emphasis added.)
Well, now we see where that has led, don't we? Salmon is further quoted as saying,
"The name of leadership is relationships - people connecting with each other and working together," he said. "Our broken relationships in the Church are a testimony against the Gospel."
No, Bishop, the heterodoxy of the Episcopal Church, in general, and of Katharine Jefferts Schori, in particular, are a testimony against the Gospel. We are called to separate ourselves from false teachers; and a shepherd, whether of a diocese, a parish, or a seminary, is called to protect his flock from wolves. In the words of the ordination vows Bishop Salmon took: “Are you ready, with all faithful diligence, to banish and drive away all erroneous and strange doctrine contrary to God’s Word; and both privately and openly to call upon and encourage others to do the same?” To lead a seminary like Nashotah House in these days, and to fail to keep that ordination vow, is to see your seminary turn into another Seabury-Western, or General, or worse.



Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* South Carolina* TheologyEcclesiologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral TheologySeminary / Theological EducationTheology: Scripture

48 Comments
Posted February 26, 2014 at 7:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Listen to it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* Theology

4 Comments
Posted February 25, 2014 at 4:25 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Watch it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: Analysis- Anglican: Latest NewsEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Fort Worth* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologySeminary / Theological Education

0 Comments
Posted February 23, 2014 at 2:04 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Over the past several years, the U.S. Episcopal Church has filed church property lawsuits against churches and dioceses that have chosen to cut ties with the denomination over theological differences. Conservative Episcopalians have left, denouncing what they believe is the denomination's departure from scriptural authority and traditional Anglicanism....

Anglican Church of North America Archbishop Robert Duncan told Institute on Religion and Demography, "This is a tragic and unwise decision that threatens the future of Nashotah House." Duncan also serves on the seminary's Board of Trustees.

The seminary's dean, Salmon, explained that the decision came after Deacon Terry Star of North Dakota, a student at Nashotah and member of the Episcopal Church's Executive Council, said that Schori had advised him against attending the seminary. Two other female Episcopal students said they were also discouraged from attending the seminary. "All three said she should be invited to come and see ACNA and TEC in harmony," Salmon said, according to IRD. "No one here is fighting with anybody."

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Fort Worth* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEcclesiologyEthics / Moral TheologySacramental TheologySeminary / Theological Education

6 Comments
Posted February 23, 2014 at 1:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Seen here as well as provided via email through multiple sources:
"BISHOP IKER HAS RESIGNED AS A TRUSTEE on the Nashotah House Board, where he has served for the past 21 years. This action was taken in protest of the Dean's invitation to the Presiding Bishop of TEC to be a guest preacher in the seminary's chapel. Citing the lawsuits initiated by her against this Diocese, Bishop Iker notified the Board that he "could not be associated with an institution that honors her." Similarly, Bishop Wantland has sent notification that he "will not take part in any functions at Nashotah" nor continue "to give financial support to the House as long as the present administration remains." He is an honorary member of the Board (without vote) and a life member of the Alumni Association."


I will take comments on this submitted by email only to KSHarmon[at]mindspring[dot]com.



Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the OrdainedPreaching / Homiletics* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral TheologySeminary / Theological Education


Posted February 20, 2014 at 4:01 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

It is a fact well known to certain Episcopalians—both those who have left the Episcopal Church (USA) and those who have remained—that ECUSA and its dioceses have followed a pattern of suing any church that chooses to leave for another Anglican jurisdiction. But the full extent of the litigation that has ensued is not well known at all, either in the wider Church, or among the provinces of the Anglican Communion. (Otherwise -- one would think -- it would never have been deemed to be conduct to be rewarded by this honorary degree, rather than this one.)

Your Curmudgeon proposes to do what he can to rectify this situation, by publishing an annual update on this site of the current status of all past and present cases in which ECUSA or any of its dioceses has been or is involved, from 2000 to date. Feel free to link to this post, to email links to it to other Episcopalians, and to send it to your Bishop -- and feel free to post any updates or corrections in the comments. In another update to be posted in the next few days, I will published a revised total for all of the money spent by ECUSA and its Dioceses to date on prosecuting all of these lawsuits (and, in the case of the second group below, defending them).

The lawsuits initiated by ECUSA and its dioceses to date are first listed below, followed by a list of the seven cases begun by a diocese or parish against the Episcopal Church (or a diocese). The listing endeavors to be as complete as I can make it. The first 83 cases, generally grouped by the State in which they each originated, are the legal actions filed since 2000 (of which I am aware) where the Episcopal Church (USA) and/or one of its dioceses played the role of plaintiff—the party who initiates a case in court by filing a complaint to seize the assets and real property of any church choosing to leave ECUSA. Please note that wherever possible the actual citation of any published decision in the case has been given. Also, please note the dates for the later cases, which demonstrate the acceleration of litigation by ECUSA and its dioceses in defiant rejection of the Primates’ call for a moratorium on litigation at the Dar es Salaam meeting

Read it all

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori

1 Comments
Posted February 18, 2014 at 11:04 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

I will take comments on this submitted by email only to KSHarmon[at]mindspring[dot]com.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Culture-WatchEducation* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology


Posted February 9, 2014 at 5:40 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Executive CouncilPresiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori

0 Comments
Posted February 8, 2014 at 2:58 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & CultureSexuality* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

8 Comments
Posted February 2, 2014 at 11:37 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

On Monday of this week, South Carolina Circuit Judge Diane Goodstein denied the motion by the ECUSA parties to expand their counterclaims against Bishop Mark Lawrence and certain of his clergy -- a motion which I previously predicted would be denied in this earlier post. In ruling from the bench, Judge Goodstein noted that the counterclaimants had failed to show any good reason to single out specific members of the clergy for acting in accordance with the wishes of the Diocese they served -- actions that were ratified and approved by literally thousands of its members.

The Diocese's Canon to the Ordinary, the Rev. Jim Lewis, responded to the ruling with this statement: "“We are grateful that Judge Goodstein dismissed this most recent effort to harass our people with time-consuming, expensive litigation. Attorneys for both TEC and TECSC have tried to distract attention from the denomination’s efforts to seize our property by suing our clergy and pursuing our lay leadership. The judge’s decision ends the legal fishing expedition and forces all to focus on the only issue that matters: whether our religious freedom is protected.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted January 7, 2014 at 5:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

In an interview with The Christian Post, the Rev. Lewis said that the motion was "based upon false claims, bordering on the absurd," and represents "a complete reversal of the facts."

"TECSC has accused us of conspiracy to leave TEC. The reality has been our attempt to defend against continued and insidious intrusions by TEC into the life of this Diocese," said Lewis.

"Our resolutions were triggered only by their actions against us. The reality is that it was TEC's attack that brought us to this place. The Diocese wisely prepared for the assaults for which TEC has become known. This current motion is simply a continuation of that pattern."

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC Conflicts* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch HistoryParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted November 29, 2013 at 7:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The filing lists 18 causes of action including breach of fiduciary duty, fraud, trademark infringement and civil conspiracy....

However, [Diocese of S.C. Canon Jim] Lewis said the allegations “are based upon false claims, bordering on the absurd.”

Lawrence also has maintained that he didn’t want to leave but was driven away by Episcopal Church leaders’ hostile administrative actions against him and the church’s departures from orthodox teachings.

Leaders of The Episcopal Church, or TEC, didn’t seek sincere reconciliation with local clergy and parishioners who disagreed with their views. Instead, they interfered in local diocesan life, Lewis said.

Read it all.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted November 26, 2013 at 3:22 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Yes, on the site of the Diocese of Chicago and those that reprint its press release, you will read a headline such as: "Episcopal Diocese of Chicago and Episcopal Church File Suit in Peoria", but not at this blog. Here we call them as we see them -- and this latest lawsuit is simply an outrageous attempt to bludgeon the already cash-starved Anglican Diocese of Quincy and its member parishes and missions into submission. Worse, it comes right after the Anglican Diocese prevailed at trial over ECUSA on many of the same issues raised in this new lawsuit.

Take a look at the complaint as filed. The lies in the plaintiffs' press release are evident from the very caption at the start of the complaint. They claim to be suing "to clarify the legal status of the parishes and missions whose leaders left the Episcopal Church in 2008," yet have they named those parishes? No, they have not: instead, in typical blunderbuss fashion, they are going after the individual rectors of those parishes, as well as Bishop Morales and the members of the Diocese's standing committee and corporate board (whom they personally sued in the case they already lost).

Another lie in the press release (emphasis added): "Among the assets are the properties of St. George's Episcopal Church in Macomb, Grace Episcopal Church in Galesburg, Trinity Episcopal Church in Rock Island and Christ Episcopal Church in Moline." That last church, however, is not mentioned in the complaint; nor is its its rector (whom, again, they sued in the suit they lost, but in his capacity as a trustee and member of the Standing Committee).

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: AnalysisEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Quincy* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

15 Comments
Posted November 7, 2013 at 11:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the Ordained

7 Comments
Posted November 5, 2013 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

On the eve of a possible shutdown of the U.S. government, religious leaders denounced the political brinkmanship prevailing in Congress today.

"Shutting down the government will do real damage," said Rev. David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World, speaking at a press conference today. "Risking our nation's creditworthiness will do even more damage. Most clearly, the disruption and uncertainty will put the brakes on our economy."

Unless our nation's leaders come to an agreement on appropriations for the coming months, the U.S. government will close on Oct. 1, the start of the 2014 fiscal year. If no agreement is reached by Oct. 17 on increasing the debt limit, the country's creditworthiness will be compromised.

Read it all and follow the link at the bottom to the letter to see the actual signatories.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyThe U.S. GovernmentBudgetThe National DeficitPolitics in GeneralHouse of RepresentativesOffice of the PresidentPresident Barack ObamaSenate* Religion News & CommentaryOther Churches* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

2 Comments
Posted October 4, 2013 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

South Carolina Circuit Judge Diane S. Goodstein released her decision yesterday that the Episcopal Church (TEC) and its local remnant, the Episcopal Church in South Carolina (ECSC) cannot expand their counterclaims against the Diocese of South Carolina to include almost two dozen parishioners who voluntarily serve as diocesan Trustees and members of the Diocese’s Standing Committee.

In her decision, Judge Goodstein wrote, “This court finds that the individual leaders whom Defendants seek to join as Counterclaim Plaintiffs are entitled to immunity” under state law. She also wrote that “adding the additional defendants would be futile.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

6 Comments
Posted October 3, 2013 at 3:20 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Presiding Bishop's job -- and future reputation -- is, in effect, on the line. She and her personal Chancellor have been so identified with the litigation agenda of ECUSA (because they run that agenda without interference from anyone else in the entire Church) that they are taking a hit, so to speak, on account of the reversals which that agenda has recently suffered in Texas (Fort Worth), Illinois (Quincy), South Carolina, and yes - let it be said -- in San Joaquin (even though there is as yet no final judgment there, ECUSA faces a decidedly uphill battle to convince the California court that its canons allow it to take the property of the withdrawing diocese).

In a (rather desperate, and, some would say) clumsy attempt to protect her prerogatives on the litigation front, the Presiding Bishop (and, as always, her personal Chancellor, whose law firm earns millions each year from the Presiding Bishop's continuing patronage) asked the "Ecclesiology Committee" to deliver a counter to the "Bishops' Statement on Polity" promulgated by the Anglican Communion Institute and the Communion Partner Bishops within ECUSA....

That Committee (with membership as noted above) obediently came forth with just such a "Statement", and presented it to the assembled bishops in Nashville. Wonder of wonders, however -- what seemed likely as a rubber stamp of 815's current litigation claims devolved into a rejection of the Committee's paper. That rejection was based chiefly on the bishops' reluctance to submit themselves or their dioceses, by a simple resolution, to any claim of metropolitan authority -- but it was also based on their own personal knowledge of the Church's historical polity.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: AnalysisEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Fort WorthTEC Conflicts: QuincyTEC Conflicts: San JoaquinTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch History* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

2 Comments
Posted September 28, 2013 at 8:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

From: The Rev. Timothy Fountain, Good Shepherd, Sioux Falls

Re: United Thank Offering Board Takeover

It is not comfortable to write to you about this concern, but it is necessary.

In the last month, the General Convention’s favorable review of the United Thank Offering (UTO) has been set aside, arbitrarily, by the Presiding Bishop and others in her inner circle.

Four members of the national UTO Board, including Board President Barbi Tinder, resigned when new by-laws were presented, placing the UTO under denominational staff rather than the elected board membership.

The Presiding Bishop, the President of the House of Deputies, several staff and their appointed members now make up more than half the board and effectively run the UTO. In fact, the positions of Board Chair and Board Treasurer have been eliminated. A first-time Board member from the Presiding Bishop’s former diocese is now listed as “Convener....”

Read it carefully and read it all.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Executive CouncilPresiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted September 23, 2013 at 3:44 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

It is the attack made on Judge Houck's factual reasoning in the first seven pages of the Memorandum that I would like to consider. Here the attorneys argue that under an earlier case from the same Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal which would hear any appeal from Judge Houck's decision Bishop vonRosenberg has certain prerogatives of his office with which Bishop Lawrence is allegedly interfering.

The argument is ludicrous on its face. Consider this point: Bishop Lawrence is also a bishop of a diocese -- the one that is paying his salary -- and so under that same precedent, he has certain prerogatives of his office as well. What Bishop vonRosenberg wants is to restrict Bishop Lawrence's prerogatives just so he can exercise the ones he claims are his.

And that is not all. In Dixon v. Edwards (the earlier case in question), Bishop Dixon claimed that it was the vestry and rector of a particular parish in her own diocese that were interfering with her prerogatives as its bishop, and the court decided that her claims warranted relief. But Bishop Lawrence is not in the same diocese as Bishop vonRosenberg, and is not subject to his jurisdiction. If Bishop Lawrence's activities in his own diocese are interfering with Bishop vonRosenberg's activities in his, then can a federal court supply a remedy? To do so would be to wade too far into matters that are "quintessentially ecclesiastical" (to quote the Court of Appeal's decision in the Schofield case), in violation of the First Amendment.

Read it all and please note the link to the South Carolina filing which you can read in full.

More South Carolina Links

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: AnalysisEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

3 Comments
Posted September 19, 2013 at 6:59 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

To the clergy and people of the Diocese,

The Texas Supreme Court has granted a TEC request for an extension of 30 days of time to file a motion to rehear the case decided against them on August 30th. TEC attorneys in the other church property dispute decided against them on that same day (Good Shepherd, San Angelo), have done the same thing.

Motions for rehearing are almost always filed following a decision of the Court. But what are their chances of getting one? Clearly the odds against such motions are very steep, and they are almost never granted. In a concurring opinion written by our attorney, Scott Brister, while a member of the Texas Supreme Court in 2009, he discussed the infrequency of parties being successful in pursuing motions for rehearing, quoting the following statistics:
“In the last 10 years, this Court issued more than 1100 majority and per curiam opinions. On rehearing, we changed less than 50 of the opinions, and those almost always in minor respects that had no effect on the judgment. In only four cases did the prevailing party in the judgment change. Thus, the chance that an original judgment will differ from the final judgment is about 1 in 300.” Edwards Aquifer Auth. v. Chemical Lime, Ltd., 291 S.W.3d 392, 412 (Tex. 2009) (Brister, J., concurring). These motions are granted so rarely that the rules do not even require responses to such motions unless the Court asks for one. TRAP 64.3.

So here we go again! This will delay final resolution of this dispute by several months. What do these people have against simply moving forward in the trial court, as directed by the Supreme Court decision? More delays – more expense – more Episcopal arrogance claiming that TEC can’t possibility be wrong!

Patience and prayer must continue. By God’s grace, we will prevail in due course.

So here we go again! This will delay final resolution of this dispute by several months. What do these people have against simply moving forward in the trial court, as directed by the Supreme Court decision? More delays – more expense – more Episcopal arrogance claiming that TEC can’t possibility be wrong!

Patience and prayer must continue. By God’s grace, we will prevail in due course.

--(The Rt. Rev.) Jack Leo Iker is Bishop of Fort Worth
Bishop of Fort Worth

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Fort WorthTEC Polity & Canons* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

4 Comments
Posted September 12, 2013 at 3:20 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all and note the wording very carefully.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: QuincyTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch HistoryParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

4 Comments
Posted September 12, 2013 at 6:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

I will have a fuller analysis of the rest of the opinion up later today at StandFirm, and will integrate that analysis with my other Quincy posts at this blog in due course. For now, this represents a great legal victory (albeit at the trial level) for those dioceses of ECUSA who are facing lawsuits over their actions to remove themselves from membership in Quincy. And for that reason, ECUSA will almost certainly appeal the ruling. But as Bishop Iker reminded 815 following the decision in favor of his diocese in Texas, it is never too late for 815 to come to its senses, and stop this endless warfare in which Christians everywhere lose.

Read it all and follow the link and please read the ruling.

Update
Allan Haley's fuller analysis 'The Importance of the Quincy Decision' is now posted on StandFirm here

and watch the interview he has just given to Kevin Kallsen at Anglican TV below:



Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Quincy* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

19 Comments
Posted September 10, 2013 at 11:18 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Living with litigation has become a way of life for us as members of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth. For the past 4 ½ years, we have been under the cloud of a lawsuit brought against us by The Episcopal Church and its local supporters, seeking to deprive us of our buildings and assets. This has been a huge distraction from our focus on spreading the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ and making new disciples for the Kingdom of God. What a relief and a blessing it was to have the Texas Supreme Court overturn the trial court judgment against us on August 30. So now we head back to the local court for a reconsideration of the dispute – based this time upon neutral principles of law, and under this methodology we are confident we will prevail. Life goes on – the litigation continues – and we learn again how important it is to trust in the Lord in the midst of distractions and threats to our security.

The national leadership of TEC has misguided and misled local Episcopalians by encouraging them to support its litigation strategy, which sought to undermine the laws of the State of Texas regarding property, trusts and corporations.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Fort Worth* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted September 8, 2013 at 3:45 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Fort Worth* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted August 30, 2013 at 5:14 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

It seems that strange and dramatic events of this kind happen year after year in the global Anglican Communion — truly one of God's gifts to headline writers.

It appears unlikely this trend will change anytime soon. Recently, in a burst of candor in Mexico, the current Archbishop of Canterbury harkened back to the English Civil War and quoted sobering advice from Bishop Jeremy Taylor, who was executed in 1645 by the Puritan parliament.

The Most Rev. Justin Welby noted that Taylor warned: "It is unnatural and unreasonable to persecute disagreeing opinions. ... Force in matters of opinion can do no good, but is very apt to do hurt."

These are hard words in an era in which England's shrinking flock of Anglicans is still fighting over female bishops and, across the Atlantic, the shrinking flock of Episcopalians continues to fight over non-celibate gay bishops. Meanwhile, leaders in the growing Global South churches of Africa and Asia are calling for repentance and doctrinal discipline.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin WelbyEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriGlobal South Churches & PrimatesSexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion)Same-sex blessings* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral TheologyTheology: Scripture

4 Comments
Posted August 28, 2013 at 3:45 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The challenges that both our Churches have experienced around issues of inclusion of all human beings in recent years have reminded us that God is always at work – on us, within us, and among us. Some have judged our smaller numbers as faithlessness but it may actually be the Spirit’s way of pruning for greater fruitfulness. If we see ourselves standing at the foot of the cross, any such judgment will be far less important than our response. Jesus has given us to one another – all of us – and we will not live faithfully if we forget who it is we see or seek in those others. The body of Christ has need of all its diverse parts, working together, for the building up of God’s beloved community and creation.

Read it all and there is a Christian Post article there on this subject also.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesLutheran

8 Comments
Posted August 21, 2013 at 4:40 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

For the second time in recent months, U.S. District Judge C. Weston Houck is weighing whether issues arising from the acrimonious Episcopal schism in eastern South Carolina belong in federal court.

As two bishops sat with their attorneys on either side of his Charleston courtroom, Houck heard about an hour of arguments Thursday on one bishop's request for an injunction against the other.

Charles vonRosenberg, the bishop of parishes remaining with the national Episcopal Church, wants the court to block Mark Lawrence, the bishop of churches that left last year, from using the name and the symbols of the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

5 Comments
Posted August 9, 2013 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Issues arising from the Episcopal schism in eastern South Carolina are going back before a federal judge.

U.S. District Judge C. Weston Houck holds a hearing in Charleston on Thursday on a motion filed by a churches remaining with the national church. It asks that only those churches be allowed to use the name and symbols of the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

6 Comments
Posted August 8, 2013 at 5:20 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church of the United States has applauded last month’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the federal law withholding national government recognition of same-sex marriages.

On 26 June 2013 the Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori stated the decision reflected “the unmistakable movement toward civil marriage equality in the states over the past decade reflects the will of the people in those states to grant equal rights and dignity under the law to all married couples and families, and today’s decision will appropriately allow those families to be recognized under federal law as well.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC Bishops* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesMarriage & FamilyReligion & CultureSexuality--Civil Unions & Partnerships* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted July 15, 2013 at 5:28 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

To compare the mentality of a brother bishop to school shooters (see here), or to call him and presumably those close to him "petty deciders or wolves who masquerade as sheep" is incredibly inappropriate for any Christian, not to mention bizarre. I truly have never before heard or read such a spiteful and hate-fueled speech on either side of our present unpleasantness. This type of hateful and over the top language is even worse coming from a leader who claims to speak for the "national Church" and all Episcopalians. Let me be clear: I am an Episcopal priest and the Presiding Bishop does not speak for me. I have no delusion that I share in any ownership of anything outside of my parish and my diocese. The idea that one person, even if one agrees with the present incumbent, can speak for all Episcopalians is sheer lunacy.

To be fair, this centralization of power and influence certainly did not start with the present Presiding Bishop, but we do well to consider the state in which we find ourselves. Power corrupts, and the Presiding Bishop rightly notes that when one figure assumes the power it often leads to abuse, tyranny and corruption. She apparently fails to see how this truth has been demonstrated in her term as Presiding Bishop. Fast tracking bishops to "renounce their orders" rather than letting the House of Bishops speak, inhibiting without the consent of the three most senior active bishops (which the new Title IV conveniently does not require), and setting up new dioceses (which TEC has every right to do) while violating the canons of TEC all point to an office that has overgrown its canonical bounds and is running unchecked.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: CommentaryEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons--Aggressive Title IV Action Against Multiple Bishops on Eve of Gen. Con. 2012* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

2 Comments
Posted July 13, 2013 at 6:26 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Jesse Zink’s “Why Provinces Matter” and the responses from William G. Witt and Colin Podmore [TLC, May 26] illustrate the range of opinions on what South Carolina’s ultimate ecclesial structure should be, from standalone province to joining the Anglican Church in North America. One thing in common to all of the initial essays, however, was the recognition that any decision on ultimate structure might still be some time away.

This recognition has also been the starting point of the Anglican Communion Institute in our work on this issue in the last several months. We believe that South Carolina’s current status does not necessarily present a problem in need of immediate resolution, but rather inheres in the nature of this dispute. Taking our cue both from Bishop Mark Lawrence and the Instruments of Communion, we have proposed that the guiding principle of the next season for South Carolina is “provisionality.” During this period ultimate decisions are deferred precisely because they are premature. Bishop Lawrence has stressed this on many occasions. The rupture with the Episcopal Church is too fresh with many unresolved issues; the ensuing litigation is only beginning, not nearing an end. This is not the time to make such a momentous decision as that regarding the ultimate future of this diocese, which predates the formation of the Episcopal Church.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: AnalysisEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC ParishesTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch History* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEcclesiology

2 Comments
Posted July 2, 2013 at 3:05 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Sadly, it has become increasingly difficult for most Anglicans to recognize this quality in the Episcopal Church’s leadership, and Bishop Jefferts Schori’s somewhat freewheeling sermon serves to highlight why. Some years ago, the Yale theologian David Kelsey pointed out that it’s axiomatic to say that the Scriptures are authoritative for the Church, since that’s the very definition of what it means to say that a text is canonical Scripture. So long as many conservative Anglicans cannot see how the Episcopal Church is answerable to the authority of the Scriptures, it will remain difficult for them to see the Episcopal Church as a Church. This has a very great deal to do with the schisms of the past decade.

My title promised two sermons from the presiding bishop, and I’ve only mentioned one. The second was preached in January, this time in Charleston, South Carolina. The occasion was the secession of the conservative diocese from the Episcopal Church, and her audience was comprised of those who had decided to stay and form a continuing Episcopal diocese. The story of why the South Carolinians left is a long and sad one—the diocese was one of the Church’s founders, older than the United States itself, and was one of the few growth spots in a generally shrinking Church—but suffice it to say that they felt pushed out, and did not leave until their bishop, Mark Lawrence, was inhibited in his ministry by a disciplinary board for reasons the diocese held were unfair. The national Episcopal Church is now pursuing the diocese in court, as they’ve done in many similar cases (by now, they’ve spent over $22 million in legal costs), seeking to recover property and assets.

Read it all.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* TheologyAnthropologyEcclesiologyEthics / Moral TheologyTheology: Scripture

5 Comments
Posted July 1, 2013 at 6:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Executive CouncilPresiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori

6 Comments
Posted June 8, 2013 at 11:01 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

On Pentecost Sunday all hell broke loose in Rome. Following Mass that day, the unpredictable Pope Francis laid hands on a demon-possessed man from Mexico and prayed for him. The YouTube video of this encounter was flashed around the world, and the story caught fire: Is Pope Francis an exorcist? The Holy Father’s Vatican handlers were quick to deny such. The pope simply offered a prayer of deliverance for the distraught man, it was said. Exorcism in the Catholic Church is a sacramental, a sacred act producing a spiritual effect, which must be done according to the officially prescribed Rite of Exorcism. And yet what the pope did on Pentecost Sunday in St. Peter’s Square was more than a simple prayer for someone to get better. It looked for all the world like a real act of spiritual warfare.

Timothy GeorgeThe scene now shifts to South America, the continent where Jorge Mario Bergoglio was born and has spent most of his life. The place: All Saints Church, in Steenrijk, Curaçao, in the Anglican Diocese of Venezuela. The date: May 12, 2013, one week before the pope’s exorcism-like event in Rome. The preacher: The Most Reverend Katharine Jefferts Schori, presiding bishop of The Episcopal Church (formerly known as ECUSA). When she was elected to her post in 2006, Father Richard John Neuhaus described it as an occasion of great sadness. His reaction reflected neither personal animus nor schadenfreudlich glee. Rather, he saw her accession to this high office as likely to deepen the pain and division within the Christian community. Sadly, he was right.

In Venezuela, Bishop Katharine also confronted a demon—the one found in her sermon text for the day, Acts 16:16-24. This is Luke’s account of Paul’s exorcism of a manic slave girl in Philippi. The bishop’s sermon was really a polemic against what she called, in postmodernist lingo, “discounting and devaluing difference.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* International News & CommentaryEuropeItalySouth AmericaVenezuela* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesRoman CatholicPope Francis

11 Comments
Posted June 3, 2013 at 9:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

It's a rather neat set-up, don't you think? Get the uneasy bishops to face disciplinary charges, and then soft-soap them with promises of full (well, almost) confidentiality. And then disregard the terms of the Accord entirely, thereby letting the accused bishops know that nothing, absolutely nothing, will stand in the way of intimidating them to whatever extent may be necessary to keep them silent.

In other words, despite your own contempt for the language of the Accord, continue to hold it over them, to intimidate them from attempting to commit such an outrageous act of disloyalty ever again. And if the bishops allow that continuing intimidation to affect their actions, then I pray for them, and for the future of a Church that is in such cynical and calculating hands.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: AnalysisEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: QuincyTEC Polity & Canons* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

2 Comments
Posted June 2, 2013 at 12:18 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

We live with the continuing tension between holier impulses that encourage us to see the image of God in all human beings and the reality that some of us choose not to see that glimpse of the divine, and instead use other people as means to an end. We’re seeing something similar right now in the changing attitudes and laws about same-sex relationships, as many people come to recognize that different is not the same thing as wrong. For many people, it can be difficult to see God at work in the world around us, particularly if God is doing something unexpected.

There are some remarkable examples of that kind of blindness in the readings we heard this morning, and slavery is wrapped up in a lot of it. Paul is annoyed at the slave girl who keeps pursuing him, telling the world that he and his companions are slaves of God. She is quite right. She’s telling the same truth Paul and others claim for themselves.[1] But Paul is annoyed, perhaps for being put in his place, and he responds by depriving her of her gift of spiritual awareness. Paul can’t abide something he won’t see as beautiful or holy, so he tries to destroy it. It gets him thrown in prison. That’s pretty much where he’s put himself by his own refusal to recognize that she, too, shares in God’s nature, just as much as he does – maybe more so! The amazing thing is that during that long night in jail he remembers that he might find God there – so he and his cellmates spend the night praying and singing hymns.

Read it all.

I will take comments on this submitted by email only to at KSHarmon[at]mindspring[dot]com.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the OrdainedPreaching / Homiletics* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral TheologyTheology: Scripture


Posted May 31, 2013 at 2:20 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

New bishops in the Episcopal Church should be vetted for their political orthodoxy, a paper released by the House of Bishops’ Standing Committee on Pastoral Development has proposed. The call for conformity came in a 29 April 2013 letter released under the signature of the Rt. Rev. James Waggoner, Jr., Bishop of Spokane and was sent to the church’s bishops and standing committees.

However some of the questions were “so egregious” and so “thin in its substance as to be silly”. Dr. Ephraim Radner of the Anglican Communion Institute told Anglican Ink.

In his covering letter Bishop Waggoner wrote the committee had noticed “two extremes” in recent years of “intense scrutiny” and “uninformed consent” in the consent process for newly elected bishops. The ten questions offered by the committee were designed “to be an additional resource in your decision-making process.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC Bishops* TheologyEcclesiologyEthics / Moral Theology

3 Comments
Posted May 29, 2013 at 3:30 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

While a number of lawsuits between dioceses and parishes have gone to state supreme courts, with the diocese prevailing in many of them, in South Carolina the state supreme court ruled the other way and held the church’s national property rules, called the Dennis Canon, were of no legal effect in South Carolina. In other words, if a parish has clear title to its property in South Carolina, it can take it with it if it leaves its diocese or denomination. Omitting this crucial legal precedent in the story was most unfortunate.

It should also be added that the appellate courts have not adjudicated the issue of whether a diocese may withdraw from the national church. Attorneys for the national church have argued the legal precedents from outside South Carolina governing the relationship of the parish to the diocese should govern the relationship of the diocese to the national church. The diocese’s lawyers in South Carolina have argued this relationship is not comparable.

One might also add, contrary to the assertion in the article about declining membership, that until these lawsuits erupted the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina was one of the few Episcopal diocese to see a growth in membership over the past decade.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch History* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesMedia* South Carolina

1 Comments
Posted April 17, 2013 at 5:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC Bishops* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

6 Comments
Posted April 16, 2013 at 11:04 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

An official with the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina said Monday he believes the dispute over who has the right to claim the centuries-old diocese name and properties in the Lowcountry should be decided in state court, not federal.

“We believe the issues belong in state court,” the Rev. Jim Lewis, Canon to the Ordinary, said. “We certainly have plenty of state precedent in our favor....”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch History* Culture-WatchHistoryLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEcclesiologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted April 10, 2013 at 3:25 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all and you can find A.S. Haley's comments on this there.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the Ordained* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted April 7, 2013 at 1:30 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch Year / Liturgical SeasonsHoly Week* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

2 Comments
Posted April 1, 2013 at 11:08 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The vote total I am told was 189 to 64.

You can find the parish website here. Please note that on the front page of the website there are four separate links for your perusal, Discernment Schedule, Discernment Meeting January 13th, Discernment Meeting January 20th, and Bishop Lawerence's Remarks. You may also be interested in the parish newsletter which you cand find there.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyPastoral Theology

5 Comments
Posted February 24, 2013 at 3:09 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

In a sermon she preached to Episcopalians in Charleston on Jan. 26, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori chose a regrettable tone in her characterization of people who were, until only recently, fellow Episcopalians....

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the OrdainedPreaching / Homiletics* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

8 Comments
Posted February 8, 2013 at 5:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

From a letter to the editor in the local paper:
As a 74-year-old lifetime Episcopalian, I am totally disappointed in the direction of our church. For years I've prayed for our local and national church and for Presiding Bishop Katharine [Jefferts] Schori. Like many other national churches they have been taught God winks at sin.

The 39 articles of religion clearly teach that the positions of the national church are wrong. I am personally a "grace Christian," but clearly God does take sin seriously.

God's will is perfect. We all need forgiveness of sin, and all are called to be new creations.

Repentence and revival is the only hope of the national Episcopal Church.

I will continue to pray for my Bishop Mark Lawrence and hope and pray for a spiritual awakening in the national Episcopal Church.

Jack Cranwell Charleston


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted February 7, 2013 at 7:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

From a letter to the editor in the local paper:
While not in The Post and Courier's coverage of the activities on Jan. 26, it has been reported in other sources that Katharine [Jefferts] Schori, the presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church, made several pronouncements in her sermon during Saturday's "convention" which I find to be highly inflammatory and quite offensive.
First, she has labeled my bishop, who was duly elected to the office and removed from same by a trumped-up ploy, a "tyrant." I have heard this man preach, watched recorded interviews with him and followed his actions. If I may be audacious and paraphrase Piiate's words - I find him to have done no wrong.
Second, as an Episcopalian who has spent his entire life in the faith - choirboy, acolyte, vestryman, member of the Brotherhood of St. Andrew and an elected delegate to a diocesan convention, I feel I am not only well-grounded in the faith, but have grown through the years in my faith which remains relevant in today's world. I am highly offended that because I do not view the world through her skewed vision, nor accept her warped goals for the future, I am to be labeled a member of the ovine species.
Following her nefarious actions of October 2012, I have moved on and have found a far greener and acceptable meadow for grazing and growing my spiritual well-being.

James Ueberroth, Charleston


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the OrdainedPreaching / Homiletics* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

7 Comments
Posted February 6, 2013 at 3:20 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

“We feel that we must take this action as TEC is already using our name, Diocesan seal and other marks of our identity to impersonate us publicly, and is organizing in South Carolina, all with the stated goal of taking over this Diocese and her parishes, including Prince George. Not to take action is simply bad stewardship of the Gospel and of churches like ours which were established and maintained over the centuries by our ancestors as centers of traditional, biblical Christian faith, and without any financial support from The Episcopal Church. This and many other parishes joining the suit are among the oldest operating churches in the nation. They and the Diocese of South Carolina pre-date the establishment of The Episcopal Church. Yet, TEC has declared its intent to take our property.”
—The Rev. Paul Fuener , Rector, Prince George Winyah, Georgetown
Read it all.

_____________________________________

Several Rectors of congregations participating in the lawsuit seeking a declaratory judgment from the courts have spoken out against The Episcopal Church’s attempt to seize their properties. The lawsuit seeks to protect the Diocese’s real and personal property and that of its parishes. It also asks the court to prevent The Episcopal Church from infringing on the protected marks of the Diocese, including its seal and its historical names, and to prevent the church from assuming the Diocese’s identity, which was established long before The Episcopal Church’s creation.


“We are guarding our church and parish house, which our ancestors built and maintained quite apart from any financial support from The Episcopal Church. For nearly 200 years, this church has been gathering in this building to worship the Lord, and going from this building to love and serve, in the name of the Lord, our neighbors in the heart of Charleston. And now The Episcopal Church would take our building from us and hinder this ongoing mission? We have received the Faith once delivered to the Apostles. It is not ours to alter, but rather to steward, and more importantly, to pass on to generations to come. It seems reasonable to expect that we should be able to do this without the threat of having our property taken from us by The Episcopal Church because we refuse to accept innovations which we find repugnant to the Faith once delivered.”
—The Very Rev. Peet Dickinson, Dean, The Cathedral of Saint Luke and Saint Paul, Charleston

“Though our hope that the theological differences between the Diocese of South Carolina and The Episcopal Church would be resolved without recourse to the courts seems to have been in vain, we are mindful yet that it is never too late for a miracle. Absent divine intervention, we will stand with the Diocese and upon the legacy of Anglican faith in this area which traces its heritage to 1767. The Church of the Cross will not be deterred from its mission and ministry in the name of Jesus Christ by this or any other matter. We are a great and growing diverse congregation of almost 1700 folks of all ages who know the power of the Holy Spirit, joyfully worship, humbly repent and gratefully thank the Lord for our many blessings. Those interested in partnering for the spread of the Gospel are invited to join us.”
—The Rev. Charles Owens, Rector, The Church of the Cross, Bluffton

“The issue for us is one of protection—the buildings and the land are assets for Gospel ministry. They were paid for by members of this parish—past and present. No outside group should determine their usage. Our Diocese and many of the parishes joining this suit pre-date the establishment of The Episcopal Church. Now, that same church has made plain its intent to claim our property. For me, Religious Freedom is at the heart of what we are willing to defend. My forebears—French Huguenots—left France in 1687 under immense religious persecution to come to the Carolina colony to freely practice their faith. Most of those original Huguenots are a part of the Anglican churches today that want that same freedom guaranteed.”
—The Rev. Shay Gaillard, Rector, The Church of the Good Shepherd, Charleston

“We have decided to take this drastic action in order to protect our name and property. The Church of Our Saviour was started over 30 years ago to serve Kiawah, Seabrook and Johns Island. The land, building and reputation were built by Islanders for themselves and those who would come here in the future. The Episcopal Church provided no financial support, no encouragement and no resource in this effort. In contrast, we are grateful to our Diocese for their help at every step of our growth. It is beyond imagining that The Episcopal Church has announced its intent to take our property and our very identity.”
—The Rev. Michael Clarkson, Rector, The Church of Our Saviour, Kiawah, Seabrook and Johns Islands

“We feel that we must take this action as TEC is already using our name, Diocesan seal and other marks of our identity to impersonate us publicly, and is organizing in South Carolina, all with the stated goal of taking over this Diocese and her parishes, including Prince George. Not to take action is simply bad stewardship of the Gospel and of churches like ours which were established and maintained over the centuries by our ancestors as centers of traditional, biblical Christian faith, and without any financial support from The Episcopal Church. This and many other parishes joining the suit are among the oldest operating churches in the nation. They and the Diocese of South Carolina pre-date the establishment of The Episcopal Church. Yet, TEC has declared its intent to take our property.”
—The Rev. Paul Fuener , Rector, Prince George Winyah, Georgetown

“In 1857, the parishioners of the Church of the Redeemer built our first building on Boulevard across from the railroad tracks. In 1891 they put the church on logs and rolled it to its present site on Russell St. Over the years they bricked it in and added other buildings and improvements. In all of these efforts, the Episcopal Church never gave them a dime. And they claim that they own our property now? No way! We in the Diocese of South Carolina, as well as here at the Redeemer, have always practiced a conservative, Bible-believing, traditional, orthodox faith. It is the Episcopal Church which has left the faith in the dust; they have changed, while we have remained faithful. Jesus Christ is Our Lord and Savior, and we follow Him in the power of His Holy Spirit as we strive to do ministry in His Name. All are welcome to join us in worshipping and serving Him.”
—The Rev. Dr. Frank E. Larisey, Rector, Church of the Redeemer, Orangeburg

“We are not bringing suit in an attempt to take anything away from the National Episcopal Church. We are seeking a declaratory judgment from the Courts as to who is the rightful owner of these historic buildings. We are trying to protect our church and other parish buildings, which were built and paid for by the sacrifice and labor of our founders and all who have worked and worshipped in this place for nearly 150 years. At no point in our history has the National Church contributed financially to the building or maintenance of any of our church buildings, facilities, or ministries. We simply desire the Court to decide and declare the rightful owners of this property. Many of our parishes and the Diocese of South Carolina pre-date the establishment of The Episcopal Church. Yet, the National Church has announced its intent to take our property. We are only trying to be good stewards of that which has been entrusted to us by those who have gone before and ensure that the mission and ministry of St. John’s Parish begun here in 1866 might continue for generations to come.”
—The Rev. Ken Weldon, Rector, St. John’s Church, Florence

“We at St Luke’s Church are seeking to protect our Sanctuary and buildings as well as our land. The land was granted to us by Sea Pines Development Company and all of our buildings were paid for by our church family with no help from any outside source, said Greg Kronz, Rector of St. Luke’s Church of Hilton Head. We are choosing to go along with the Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina and are joining many other parishes to protect our Diocese and other parishes from potential take-over of property or litigation from the National Episcopal Church. Our church and a number of the parishes in our Diocese as well as our Diocese itself pre-dates the establishment of The Episcopal Church. Our Bishop, Mark Lawrence, called as Bishop of our Diocese, has endeavored to guard and protect the churches in the Diocese so that they have the freedom to practice our Christian Faith as Anglicans grounded in the word of God. We will not be threatened or held hostage by the possibility of changing our beliefs or losing our property.” 

—The Rev. Greg Kronz, Rector, St. Luke’s Church, Hilton Head

“Ever since the Cornerstone of St. Michael’s Church was put into the earth in the 1700s, we have been ambassadors of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, as a mission station on the corner of Meeting Street and Broad. A plaque on Meeting Street describes St. Michael’s as a ‘Monument to the past and a movement to the future.’ To be faithful to our ancestors and, at the same time, be a mission station today to our city and beyond, it means we can no longer participate in nor support The Episcopal Church whose teachings are contrary to the Bible and Book of Common Prayer. We also cannot allow The Episcopal Church to force us to adopt doctrines and policies that go against everything for which our Cornerstone stands.”
—The Rev. Alfred T.K. Zadig, Jr., Rector, St. Michael’s Church, Charleston

“We have historic and new buildings on our campus worth millions of dollars sacrificially paid for by members of St. Paul’s Summerville—none of these present buildings built between 1857 and 2003 received any financial contribution from The Episcopal Church headquartered in New York City. Like many of our fellow Low Country parishes, we are one of the oldest churches in the nation dating to our establishment in 1707 as a Church of England parish on the banks of the Stono River. We have re-located three times during our three centuries of existence following the inland 18th and 19th century population migration until settling at our present location on West Carolina Avenue in Summerville. Like the Diocese of South Carolina and other parishes we pre-date the establishment of The Episcopal Church by several decades. We will protect our property from any forced take-over by others. We are Anglicans of Scripture, Tradition and Reason and find the present trajectory of The Episcopal Church contrary to our Biblical beliefs as well as the Tradition established through the ages of how much latitude one is allowed to interpret Scripture’s plain sense.”
—The Rev. Michael Lumpkin, Rector, St. Paul’s Church, Summerville

“It is our responsibility to preserve and protect our historic buildings and holdings for the benefit of our congregation. The majority of what we have we inherited from the faithful that have gone before us, who paid for these treasures with their blood, sweat, tears, personal sacrifices and finances. The Episcopal Church has never given us financial support and we deny that they may have gained any right to our assets through some clever and deceptive declaration of their own device. The Protestant Episcopal Church of the Parish of St. Philip was created as a corporate entity in 1785 by the then-newly formed Legislature of the State of South Carolina, before there was a Diocese of South Carolina and before there was a national Episcopal organization. Our roots run deep in the cause for religious and political freedom and we are unwilling to abandon our precious heritage by capitulating to TEC even though they wield massive financial power and are determined to defeat us in the courts. We pray that God will protect us as He protected young David when he confronted the giant Goliath.”
—The Rev. Haden McCormick, Rector, St. Philip’s Church, Charleston

“Trinity was founded by faithful congregants in Myrtle Beach. It has been built by their own sacrifice of time and money without any aid from The Episcopal Church. While Trinity is one of the newer churches in the Diocese, many of the churches joining in the petition predate the formation of The Episcopal Church. Trinity is joining in this suit to preserve our freedom of conscience. We are not seeking to take anything from The Episcopal Church. We simply want the freedom to be faithful to Christ as we see fit without outside interference and we’re asking the courts to aid us in that. In Acts 25, the Apostle Paul was under persecution from the religious authorities of his day. He appealed to Caesar in the hopes that he would have a fair hearing from an impartial party. That is what we are doing here.”
—The Rev. Iain Boyd, Rector, Trinity Church, Myrtle Beach

“All Saints was founded in 1957 as a plant from St. John’s Episcopal Church and was financed, nurtured, and cared for by St. John’s, the community of Florence, and the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina. In her 57 years, All Saints affiliation with the Diocese has never changed and our support of Bishop Mark Lawrence is unwavering. Joining the suit against The Episcopal Church is not just a show of solidarity, but a proclamation of our belief in the sacredness of scripture, the uniqueness of Christ, and the apostolic teaching we have received for almost 2000 years. Our actions today are also made in response to how The Episcopal Church has aggressively pursued in court those who have spoken out against their heretical views and the idea that they own our property and buildings. It is our belief and the belief of our Diocese that our property belongs to the parishioners of All Saints who have freely and sacrificially given of their resources so that All Saints can be a catalyst for the spread the Gospel in Florence and beyond.”
— The Rev. Karl Burns, All Saints Church, Florence

“We, the people of Saint James Church, James Island, believe that we are called by God to clearly, unequivocally, and completely disassociate ourselves from The Episcopal Church whose recent actions have called into question long-standing Christian beliefs. By joining this suit, we are not only demonstrating our support for the Diocese, but our continued commitment to the fundamental beliefs shared by our Bishop Mark Lawrence and other Anglicans around the world. Unfortunately, The Episcopal Church has been very aggressive in suing those who disagree with its unorthodox theology, however, there can be no question that our Parish property belongs to our members and not to some voluntary association that has abandoned the fundamental beliefs of Anglicanism. This suit will prove that point.”
— The Rev. Arthur Jenkins, Rector, Saint James Church, James Island

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

5 Comments
Posted February 6, 2013 at 8:32 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

[Bishop Mark] Lawrence spokeswoman Jan Pringle said in a statement that the injunction will remain in effect until the court rules on the property dispute “to protect the Diocese’s real, personal and intellectual property and that of its parishes from a TEC takeover.”

While Lawrence's group viewed the decision as a validation, the TEC congregations noted, "This was done with the consent of all parties, and either side has the right to have a hearing on the matter with 14 days' notice.”

"This is not an unusual development, and it signifies only that these issues remain to be decided at a future time," said Holly Behre, communications director for The Episcopal Church in South Carolina.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

0 Comments
Posted February 2, 2013 at 11:25 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

This is a highly unusual development, and will doubtless sow consternation among the SCEpiscopalians and their ilk: It shows that Chancellor Tisdale can read the writing on the wall, and knows that ECUSA cannot succeed in any plan to assume the DSC's identity through its own actions. Since the injunction now accomplishes nearly all of the objectives Bishop Lawrence had when he authorized the lawsuit (all that remains is a judgment declaring that his Diocese is the lawful and exclusive owner of the registered marks), it will be interesting to see whether or not ECUSA stipulates to the entry of such a final judgment in the weeks ahead. In short, there is nothing left worth litigating. Yes, ECUSA reserved the right to request a modification in the injunction, but at most it would be only to tinker with the fine points (and I can't think of any). That stipulation was probably included to assuage Mr. Tisdale's clients.

Where things will go from here is now the question. Bishop vonRosenberg has his work cut out for him -- he has to walk a tightrope between keeping the Presiding Bishop happy, and not violating the injunction in any way.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: AnalysisEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

2 Comments
Posted February 1, 2013 at 7:40 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Last week, orthodox Christians convened at the historical St. Philip’s Church to participate in theological discussions at the Mere Anglicanism Conference. Most of the attendees expressed support for the Diocese of South Carolina under Bishop Mark Lawrence, which has been forced out of the Episcopal Church through heavy-handed persecution against traditional Christians within the denomination. Ironically, revisionist Episcopalians met only eight blocks away to reorganize the rump diocese loyal to the national Episcopal Church, USA under Presiding Bishop Katherine Jefferts Schori.

Mere Anglicanism started off on January 24th with a traditional evensong from the 1662 Book of Common Prayer with the Rev. Dr. Leander Harding of Trinity School of Ministry acting as officiant. The Rt. Rev. Dr. Paul Barnett lectured the next morning on five epiphanies that convinced him of the historicity of Christ. The former Anglican Bishop of North Sydney emphasized the powerful manuscript evidence, the archaeological-geographical credibility of the Biblical record, the multiple attestation to miracles, and the existence of external hostile sources. He likewise excoriated the textual skepticism and deconstructionism that dominates many seminaries today. “The health in the seminary influences the health of the ministers, and the health in the ministers influences the health in the churches,” he surmised.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: AnalysisEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* South Carolina* TheologyChristology

2 Comments
Posted January 31, 2013 at 3:11 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A spokesman for Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori has denied suggestions that her sermon denouncing as terrorists and murderers those who did not share her views on the polity of the Episcopal Church was directed at Bishop Mark J. Lawrence or the members of the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina.

Speaking to national church loyalists at a special convention held 26 Jan 2013 at Grace Church in Charleston, Bishop Jefferts Schori characterized her opponents as “wolves” and false shepherds....

Bishop Lawrence told AI the presiding bishop’s remarks were unhelpful.

“One of the things I said to the Presiding Bishop when last we spoke is that if she and I could refrain from demonizing one another, regardless of what others around us are saying, we might get somewhere. Based on the words and argument of her recent sermon for the New TEC Diocese in South Carolina, I guess she wasn’t able to do it,” Bishop Lawrence said.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryPreaching / Homiletics* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

3 Comments
Posted January 29, 2013 at 6:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Last week, Circuit Court Judge Diane S. Goodstein issued an order stopping the continuing Episcopalians from using the diocesan name and seal. Jeff Walton, Anglican Program director at the Institute on Religion & Democracy, told CP that the continuing Episcopalians are free to find new leadership.

"Those who have chosen to remain connected to the national denomination are entitled to organize a new diocese and elect their own leaders – this is not in dispute," said Walton. "What continuing Episcopalians cannot do is attempt to assume the identity of the departing Diocese of South Carolina. The Diocese is a legally incorporated entity with its own elected officers, registered names and seal."

Regarding whether or not the temporary order would become a longer term injunction come a hearing on Friday, Walton told CP that he felt the breakaway Diocese's case was strong. "In some churches, this would be resolved as a disappointing but ultimately civil divorce. Unfortunately, the national Episcopal Church has adopted a 'scorched earth' policy with litigation against any parish or diocese that chooses to depart the denomination," said Walton.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

3 Comments
Posted January 29, 2013 at 3:10 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, Katharine Jefferts Schori, recently addressed a gathering in the Diocese of South Carolina. During her sermon, Jefferts Schori said the following:
...I tell you that story because it's indicative of attitudes we've seen here and in many other places. Somebody decides he knows the law, and oversteps whatever authority he may have to dictate the fate of others who may in fact be obeying the law, and often a law for which this local tyrant is not the judge. It's not too far from that kind of attitude to citizens' militias deciding to patrol their towns or the Mexican border for unwelcome visitors. It's not terribly far from the state of mind evidenced in school shootings, or in those who want to arm school children, or the terrorism that takes oil workers hostage....
Read and watch it all.

I will take comments on this submitted by email only to at KSHarmon[at]mindspring[dot]com.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryPreaching / Homiletics


Posted January 29, 2013 at 7:26 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* South Carolina

1 Comments
Posted January 27, 2013 at 12:12 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the Ordained

3 Comments
Posted January 27, 2013 at 12:01 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

On Saturday, the delegates representing Lowcountry congregants conducted business under the name “Episcopal Church in South Carolina.” Lawrence and his diocesan followers have also filed a lawsuit seeking to retain about $500 million worth of church properties. Lawrence has not affiliated with any organization, although he said he considers the breakaway congregations part of the Anglican Communion. Von Rosenberg said the Communion has not acknowledged the congregations as part of the Communion.

Von Rosenberg, like Jefferts Schori, chose not to focus on the unspoken uncertainty that ripples beneath the surface, instead reminding congregants that the coming rebuilding effort should be based on a foundation of humility and love, realizing that those who have left the U.S. church also believe they are following Christ.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

4 Comments
Posted January 27, 2013 at 11:25 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Rev. Jim Lewis, canon to the ordinary of the independent Diocese of South Carolina, attended the convention as an observer and reiterated the need to keep identities distinct.

“Today’s special convention was clearly a source of great joy for those attending, and understandably so,” Lewis said in a statement to The Post and Courier. “As we have often said, The Episcopal Church is more than free to establish a new diocese in South Carolina. What the court ruling this week says, though, is that they can’t do that and claim to be us.”

At a news conference Saturday, Jefferts Schori would not speak about current litigation or future court battles over property that are almost certain to ensue.

“The challenge is always to recognize that our work is God’s work,” she said. “The work of the courts is to help resolve differences when faithful people haven’t done that themselves.” Church property, she said, “is a legacy, it’s a trust” that transcends generations and particular conflicts.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* TheologyEcclesiology

27 Comments
Posted January 27, 2013 at 6:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

[The] Rev. Canon Jim Lewis, who is part of the diocesan leadership that decided to break away from TEC, told The Christian Post that he has little issue with the process that the Continuing Episcopalians are undertaking. "We have said consistently that The Episcopal Church (TEC) is free to set up a new Diocese here. She has every right to come and be a part of that process," said Lewis.

"What neither she nor TEC has a right to do is to claim to be us in that process. We remain the same legally incorporated entity that was established in 1785 (four years before TEC was founded). We have disassociated with TEC but we have not ceased to be The Diocese of South Carolina."

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: San Joaquin* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

2 Comments
Posted January 25, 2013 at 5:01 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Jefferts Schori said that, in other states, courts have generally ruled property belongs to the larger church, not individual parishes or dioceses.

"Everywhere but in South Carolina where suits like this have taken place, in the ones that have gone to completion, the decisions of the court have said the property is held in trust for the Episcopal Church," she said. "We believe all the assets of the church are a legacy of generations before us for the mission and the ministry of the Episcopal Church. It's not our right to give it away for purposes unimagined by the givers."

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina

9 Comments
Posted January 25, 2013 at 1:43 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The order goes into effect immediately, so it will essentially force the remnant group meeting this Saturday to adopt a different name for the entity it will form, and by which it will be known. The governing documents which are scheduled for approval (a Constitution and Canons based on the former diocesan version before changes were approved in 2011 and 2012) will need to be changed to remove all references to "the Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina" and "the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina." The order will remain in effect until February 1, when a hearing will be held starting at 9:00 a.m. in the Richland County courthouse on a preliminary ("temporary") injunction, pending the trial and final resolution of the case. (I am not sure why it is not to be held in the Dorchester County courthouse at St. George; perhaps some South Carolina attorney will enlighten us on injunction procedures there.)

This order, despite its temporary nature, represents a huge advantage gained in the lawsuit which Bishop Lawrence's Diocese brought early this month, after all attempts had failed to get the remnant Episcopalians to cease voluntarily their appropriations of the diocesan names and corporate seal. (The Diocese announced yesterday that fifteen other parishes had joined in the lawsuit, and that thirteen more are considering joining it later, which would bring the total number of plaintiffs to 44. Perhaps this ruling will provide the spur they need to make their decision.) The Court has found, based just on the showing presented ex parte by Bishop Lawrence and his capable attorneys, that the plaintiff Diocese made "a prima facie showing . . . as to the likelihood of [its] success on the merits." In other words, the Diocese showed to the Court sufficient indicia of its ownership of the registered marks (the names and corporate seal) that the Court believes it will prevail in the ultimate lawsuit.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted January 25, 2013 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

This post is 'Sticky' at the head of the page - new posts are below.
St. George, SC, January 23, 2013 – South Carolina Circuit Court Judge Diane S. Goodstein today issued a temporary restraining order that prevents The Episcopal Church (TEC) and parishes and individuals associated with it from assuming the identity of the Diocese of South Carolina.

The judge’s order states, in part: “No individual, organization, association or entity, whether incorporated or not, may use, assume, or adopt in any way, directly or indirectly, the registered names and the seal or mark of The Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina.”

The order specifically prohibits all but a handful of Diocesan employees, directors and trustees who are specified by name from using the Diocese’s identity.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

36 Comments
Posted January 23, 2013 at 5:30 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

22 January 2013

Beloved in Christ,

The Apostle Paul teaches us that we must not expect to pursue our mission for the glory of Christ and the evangelization of the world without opposition. Since our separation from the Episcopal Church three years ago, we have enjoyed serving Christ together largely free from the unnecessary distractions that had come to characterize life within the Episcopal Church. We have planted and revitalized churches and even facilitated the creation of a new diocese.

But no servant of Christ can expect such tranquility to last forever. Recently, the Episcopal Church took hostile actions against the Diocese of South Carolina, removing its Bishop (+Mark Lawrence) from ministry and threatening to aggressively litigate for property. The Diocese of South Carolina has filed a request for a declaratory judgment in Dorchester County, S.C. that seeks relief from such actions. As of Jan 21, the vestry of St. Andrew’s Church Mount Pleasant voted unanimously to join in this request for declaratory judgment.

Two words of clarification are in order. In this action we are not seeking anything from Episcopal Church other than our peace. The legal vehicle of a declaratory judgment action filed by the diocese offers us the opportunity to gain clarity and, in turn, peace from the threats voiced by the Episcopal Church against us. We have appealed to the court system, as Paul appealed to Caesar (Acts 25.11) asking the courts to prevent the Episcopal Church from acting in a manner for which they have no claim. Second, and more importantly, we will refuse to be consumed by this process – keeping the “main thing” the main thing – and encourage all involved to do likewise. No servant of Christ can expect to go through this life without opposition, but no servant of Christ can use opposition as an excuse to become distracted from the mission. At St. Andrew’s we exist to “Connect people to the presence and power of Jesus Christ.” By God’s grace, we will continue to do so.

Friends, in your thoughts, prayers, and actions think on Christ and how He may be glorified, maintaining your focus on Him who holds all things in His mighty providence. In these things we have the victory.

Faithfully,

The Rt. Rev’d Steve Wood, Rector
Mary Graham, Senior Warden
Andy Breaux, Junior Warden
Forrest Foshee, Secretary
Robyn Frampton, Treasurer
Angie Clarke
Marilyn Hendrix
Kyu Lee
Caroline Lesesne
Mikell Murray
Martha Senf
Bruce Wallace
Tim Winkler

(Emphasis is theirs--KSH).

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch History* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

6 Comments
Posted January 23, 2013 at 7:48 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A spokesman for the presiding bishop on 18 Jan told Anglican Ink the national church had no comment to make about the litigation. However, Executive Council member, the Rev. Canon Mark Harris noted on his blog the “proposition that people who leave The Episcopal Church have a right to take the property and stuff with them” was false. The Episcopal Church was “hierarchical enough so that when you give something to The Episcopal Church (locally St. SaltyBottom in the Swamp) it stays with The Episcopal Church (on the most local level possible).”

The diocese, however, argues the belief the Episcopal Church is hierarchical body with the dioceses subordinate to the national church was historically false and legally suspect. “In fact, the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina helped to create the Episcopal Church in 1789 as a confederation of sovereign dioceses,” the diocesan statement said.

“The Diocese chose to disassociate from The Episcopal Church, but we did not leave behind more than $500 million in intellectual, personal or real property that was paid for by members of the Diocese through the 228 years of our existence,” Canon Lewis said.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch History* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted January 23, 2013 at 7:32 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

"It is beyond belief what The Episcopal Church is attempting to do," [David] Thurlow said last week. "What it amounts to is corporate identity theft."

Thurlow said St. Matthias' participation in this legal action is necessary to protect the church and its parish buildings - erected and maintained by the families of Summerton and surrounding communities without any financial support from The Episcopal Church - from being taken over by The Episcopal Church.

"Our community is most disturbed that outside attorneys and individuals from New York, who have never lived here in the South, should have the audacity to suggest that they have any claim whatsoever to church buildings and property here in South Carolina," Thurlow said. "That The Episcopal Church is now claiming ownership of our land, that is not right."

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

2 Comments
Posted January 16, 2013 at 1:32 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* South Carolina* TheologyEcclesiologyEthics / Moral Theology

2 Comments
Posted January 11, 2013 at 4:14 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry

0 Comments
Posted January 10, 2013 at 4:59 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

3 Comments
Posted January 8, 2013 at 5:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch Year / Liturgical SeasonsChristmasParish MinistryMinistry of the OrdainedPreaching / Homiletics

4 Comments
Posted December 29, 2012 at 2:31 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

“What the Presiding Bishop is trying to do is to organize a new diocese of the Episcopal Church in this area," ...[ Bishop Mark Lawrence] said. “We in the Diocese of South Carolina have nothing to do with that undertaking. The name “The [Episcopal] Diocese of South Carolina” is the registered property and identity of the Diocese.”

Bishop Lawrence explained that the continued use of the Dioceses’ corporate name and identity by TEC is causing confusion among the members of the Diocese and the wider South Carolina public. “This misuse of our name and identity by TEC is a violation of South Carolina law and can subject it to liability for treble damages and attorneys’ fees, he explained. “I call upon TEC to cease and desist from the continued misuse of our name and identity.“

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* South Carolina

20 Comments
Posted December 22, 2012 at 1:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori

3 Comments
Posted December 20, 2012 at 5:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

I will take comments on this submitted by email only to at KSHarmon[at]mindspring[dot]com.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* Culture-WatchChildrenEducationViolence


Posted December 16, 2012 at 3:11 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Canonical legerdemain and unlawful usurpation of authority by the presiding bishop in the aim of a political agenda were a sad commentary on the moral state of the Episcopal Church, Bishop Lawrence observed.

The presiding bishop would go to any lengths to exterminate dissent and would twist words to achieve her purposes. “She and her advisers will say I have said what I have not said in ways that I have not said them even while they cite words from my Bishop’s Address” to the South Carolina special convention, he said.

But Bishop Lawrence reported that he was “heartened” by the support he had received by the “vast majority” within the diocese and from the “majority of Anglicans around the world” who have “expressed in so many ways that they consider me an Anglican Bishop in good standing and consider this Diocese of South Carolina to be part of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. “

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts SchoriTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC Polity & Canons* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted December 14, 2012 at 6:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori* South Carolina

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Posted December 11, 2012 at 6:10 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]




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