South Carolina Standing Committee Statement

Posted by Kendall Harmon

It was with great sadness that we heard of the decision of the Presiding Bishop’s office and Bishop Clayton Matthews to “initiate a disciplinary process” against nine faithful Bishops of the Church (including Bishop Salmon) for their “action in signing affidavits in opposition” to The Episcopal Church’s motions for Summary Judgment in the Dioceses of Quincy and Fort Worth. These Bishops are facing disciplinary actions for simply expressing their faithfully held factual understanding and belief that The Episcopal Church is not the unitary hierarchical body claimed by its attorneys in litigation. That this action has been possible validates our concerns with the changes made to the Title IV disciplinary canons. That such an attempt is being made to silence the remaining conservative voices in the church is a troubling sign of what may lie ahead. As the details of the charges and their nature are made clear in the days ahead, their seriousness and character will become evident. Until then, we as the Standing Committee wish to express first our unswerving support for Bp. Salmon and the eight other faithful bishops facing disciplinary action along with him. We similarly express our united contempt for such a predictably partisan use of the disciplinary canons and we pray that those responsible will have the good sense to promptly drop these proceedings. They can only bring further injury and dishonor to the Church we love.
If you wish to see such, you may find a signed copy here.

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

Posted July 3, 2012 at 8:16 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. SC blu cat lady wrote:

Where are the letters of support for these complaints from the standing committees of progressive dioceses in TEC? We have heard from conservative dioceses…...  We are waiting…....

July 4, 12:19 pm | [comment link]
2. Ralph wrote:

I think only a foaming-at-the-mouth rabid liberal with something to gain could support the filing of these charges.

I suspect that the liberals who haven’t yet reached the end-stage of their madness are almost as shocked as are the orthodox laity and clergy.

TEC isn’t quite ready for totalitarianism. I suspect we’ll see very few significant statements of support, and I also suspect that those who disagree are afraid to speak out. I don’t ever visit the HOB/D list (just as I avoid xxx movies), but those who do can keep us apprised of how effectively the Fuerherin is in keeping the troops in line.

July 4, 2:09 pm | [comment link]
3. tjmcmahon wrote:

Ralph, You may not think TEC is ready for totalitarianism, but apparently you did not get the memo- 67% of the HoB supported putting these canons into place knowing full well how they would be used.  What is being done with them was the desired outcome when they were put in place in 2009.  No one who could read English would not understand the intent and method of secret accusations and investigations, and star chamber proceedings.  The only difference between then and now is that a substantial number of bishops who voted against them have been replaced by bishops in favor. So, now the vote would be more like 75% or 80%.  Everyone who you could actually expect to vote no has charges laid against them.
If you are correct and TEC is not ready for totalitarianism, they have 10 days, and only 10 days, to do anything at all about it, because once GC is over, their fate in that regard is sealed.  If the revisionists have their way, anyone who disagrees with TEC polity being an absolute hierarchy comparable to that of the Borgia papacy will be ineligible for episcopal office (as you would know if you got your head out of the sand and read the HoBD, your leadership is pushing for exactly that and some plan to introduce it at this convention).  Once that is canon, until such time as it is rescinded, there will never be another conservative or traditionalist, or even historian who insists on accuracy, consecrated bishop of TEC.  No doubt, if we had access to the “Secret” deputies only/kibitzers barred list, we would see things are even worse than what they are willing to talk about on the semi-public HoBD.

July 4, 3:14 pm | [comment link]
4. SC blu cat lady wrote:

My comment was in part sarcastic and not to be taken too seriously.  However, TJ is correct, many bishops do agree with these new Title IV canons. I don’t think all clergy and the various dioceses who had to vote on them were blind to how they would be used. Perhaps some were. I remember talking to a friend who could see exactly how these canons would be used against just about any clergy who would disagree with the national leadership of TEC. Then, I was still quite surprised and amazed that such canons would even be considered much less passed. The friend was correct. We have seen that these canons can be used to file complaints against clergy for just about any reason. The outcome has not been what some may have wanted ( i.e. getting rid of all *conservative* clergy)

There was quite a lot of information published by various individuals (Mark McCall and Allan Runyan come to mind) and groups (i.e. The ACI)  that have done wonderful work explaining the new Title IV canons.  So really there was no excuse to NOT know about the implications of these new canons. 

I truly find it amazing that so few delegates to diocesan conventions did so little to find out what was really in these canons. We were fortunate here in the diocese of SC that one of the lawyers in the diocese (Allan Runyan) actually took the time at our diocesan convention to explain the new title IV canons. Truthfully by then, most of the delegates had already learned about them but just in case someone had not, it was explained. The vote was overwhelming to not accept these canons.  I wonder why more conventions did not do the same thing. Certainly explanations had been published and were available to anyone who wanted to learn more. I guess some people just don’t want to think.

July 4, 9:17 pm | [comment link]
5. MichaelA wrote:

“Everyone who you could actually expect to vote no has charges laid against them.”

That sounds correct, TJ.  This action is effective to accomplish so many things desired by KJS that I will be very surprised if she and her close cronies are not 100% behind it.

She can be quite cunning in some ways.  But, she is still incompetent.  Just as her predecessor Frank Griswold was incompetent.  Even on their own terms, their only real achievement has been to see TEC’s membership and income nose-dive.  If they ensure that liberal principles totally prevail in TEC, but at the cost of that body’s bankruptcy, how does achieve any of their aims?

Its just a shame that faithful Christians in TEC have to put up with leaders, who are blundering, accident-prone AND apostate!

July 4, 11:57 pm | [comment link]
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