Daily Archives: December 4, 2008

Charlotte Observer: Decision splits Episcopal Church

Bishop Michael Curry, who heads the Raleigh-based Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina, which includes Charlotte, said the conservatives had a right to do what they wanted. But he predicted that their declaration in Wheaton would matter little in the Tar Heel state.

“The Episcopal Church in North Carolina continues to grow,” he said in a statement. “I do not anticipate that these reported actions will have any significant impact on the church in North Carolina.”

The Charleston-based Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina ”“ the only one of five dioceses in the Carolinas that might be tempted to join the conservative province ”“ sent the Rev. John Scott of Eutawville, S.C., to Wheaton to be an observer and report back to Bishop Mark Lawrence, a conservative whose election was initially rejected by the Episcopal Church.

“We’re watching it and wishing them success,” said the Rev. Kendall Harmon, a spokesman for the S.C. diocese. “We’re in theological sympathy, but not in strategic agreement. ”¦ Right now, we’re seeking to be a faithful witness and tell the truth to an (Episcopal) church that’s lost its mind, that’s turned its back on God and his truth.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Common Cause Partnership, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts

ENS: Lambeth Palace responds to Common Cause Partnership announcement

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Archbishop of Canterbury, Common Cause Partnership, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts

Cleveland Plain-Dealer: Former Episcopal breakaway parishes join new North American Anglican Church

Organizers hope to become a full province of the Anglican Communion, a status that would make it a peer of the Episcopal Church in the United States and the Anglican Church of Canada. It is the first attempt to create a province defined by theological orientation, not by geography.

“It’s something that has never happened before in the Anglican community,” said the Rev. Roger Ames of St. Luke’s Anglican Church in Fairlawn, who attended the event. “You will have a more orthodox group that will, in time, be recognized as an alternative to the United States Episcopal Church.”

The other local breakaway parishes are St. Barnabas Anglican Church in Bay Village, the Anglican Church of the Transfiguration in Cleveland, Church of the Holy Spirit in Akron and St. Anne in the Fields in Madison.

Martha Wright, communications officer for the Diocese of Ohio, said five of its 93 parishes in northern Ohio have broken away. She said the diocese, based at Trinity Cathedral in Cleveland, will “absolutely not” break with the Episcopal church.

“We’re sorry that they chose to go that route,” Wright said. “We stay because this is who we are.”

Read the whole article.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Common Cause Partnership

National Post (Canada): Conservative Anglicans take step in forming new church

The new church, called the Anglican Church in North America, represents conservative 700 parishes and 100,000 parishioners. They share an orthodox Christian outlook that includes opposition to same-sex blessings and to the ordination of gay bishops.

The plan for the formation of a new jurisdiction, based on ideology rather than geography, was first reported in the National Post last month. At that time, leaders of the conservative movement in Canada and the United States said they would not need the blessing of Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury and the spiritual head of global Anglicanism, because he had lost his moral authority.

Instead, the new church will look to the Global South for support, where the majority of Anglicans live and orthodoxy is the norm.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Common Cause Partnership

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Proposed constitution to reunite conservative Episcopalian groups

Bishop Robert Duncan of the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh (Anglican) has been named primate- and archbishop-designate of a proposed new body of 100,000 theologically conservative Anglicans in North America, which hopes to win recognition from the global Anglican Communion.

Archbishop-designate Duncan, whose diocese left the Episcopal Church in October, said he was “elated” that 30 representatives of eight groups with ties to the Anglican tradition in the U.S. and Canada had unanimously proposed a constitution for a body called the Anglican Church in North America. They met yesterday in Wheaton, Ill.

“I believe we’re at the beginning of something that is very significant for the Christian church in North America and for the Anglican Communion worldwide,” he said.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Common Cause Partnership

Washington Times: Anglican conservatives propose constitution

A group of about 70 Anglican conservatives on Wednesday released a proposed constitution for a new Anglican province in the United States that will directly compete with the 2.1-million-member Episcopal Church.

The new Anglican Church in North America consists of various groups of conservatives who have split from the denomination over issues of biblical authority since the 2003 consecration of an openly gay bishop, including four whole dioceses of the Episcopal Church.

On Wednesday night, the new church released its provisional constitution and provisional canons. They declare the group part of “the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church,” confess to the uniqueness of Jesus Christ and declare “eight elements as characteristic of the Anglican Way, and essential for membership.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Common Cause Partnership

Look for this kind of thing all over the country at the state and local level

The City Council in Bellevue Washington voted Monday night to raise property taxes 3 percent next year and 3 percent the following year.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, Politics in General

Favor from Blog Readers

I am interested in local reaction to the new Province story. If you have such in your area, please pass it long; do not assume I have seen it. Examples would be the Tenessee priests, the Chicago Bishop, and the South Carolina clergyman quoted in the stories so far posted. Please email them (KSHarmon[at]mindspring[dot]com) to me, thanks–KSH.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Common Cause Partnership

Telegraph: US Anglicans form breakaway church

The new Anglican Church in North America will include four Episcopal dioceses which recently split from the US church, as well as breakaway parishes from Canada.

Conservative Episcopalians have long been upset by the stance of the church’s leadership on various issues, particularly homosexuality.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Common Cause Partnership

Anglican Mainstream’s Message to the new Anglican entity in America

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Common Cause Partnership

Wall Street Journal: Episcopalians Form Rival Church

A collection of breakaway Episcopalians have formed a single denomination to rival the mainstream U.S. church, cementing a schism that was largely prompted by the election in 2003 of a gay bishop.

Their new “Anglican Church in North America” said it includes four dioceses that recently split from the Episcopal church, as well as several splinter groups, 1,000 clergy and an estimated 700 parishes, said the Rev. Peter Frank, spokesman for the Right Rev. Robert Duncan, bishop of Pittsburgh, who months ago lead his diocese away from the Episcopal church. A spokesman in the Episcopal church said he was dubious the numbers were that high.

The new church will seek recognition from the world-wide Anglican communion, including its leader, the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev. Rowan Williams. It is unclear how the larger church will deal with a rival on American soil to an existing church body. The tension will no doubt spark fresh lawsuits over the ownership of church property, dozens of which have already been filed from California to Virginia in recent years.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Common Cause Partnership

Front Page of the Local (Charleston S.C.) Paper: (New) Anglican group organizes

“We’ve seen it coming for years. It’s not a rival denomination. At best, it would be a church within a church,” said the Very Rev. John Burwell of the Church of the Holy Cross, which has congregations on Sullivan’s Island and Daniel Island. “They’re still part of the Anglican Church. They just don’t want to be part of the Episcopal Church,” he said.

“We intend to stay and fight. We intend to stay in the Episcopal Church and act as the conscience of the Episcopal Church,” Burwell said.

Read it all (essentially the AP article with local reaction).

Posted in Uncategorized

Memphis (Tennessee) Commerical Appeal: Episcopal feud erupts into schism

Other Memphis-area parishes intend to remain with the Episcopal Church.

“I don’t think there’s anybody left in the Diocese of West Tennessee that is going to be interested in that,” said Rev. Dr. Andrew MacBeth, rector of Calvary Episcopal Church. “It has been a long time coming, and I wish them well, but we really are of different views on how to interpret Scripture and a different view of authority.”

Rev. Jeffery Marx, rector of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church of Collierville, expects the Episcopal Church to react to the conservative rebellion.

“There’s more and more anger toward those people,” he said of those leaving the church. “Especially the left-wingers are furious about what these people are doing. They have spent millions of dollars on lawsuits. It’s really unfortunate.

“It’s what people do when they’re mad.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Common Cause Partnership

Chicago Tribune: Conservative Anglicans in Common Cause Partnership issue constitution, laws

The province’s constitution leaves property in the hands of individual parishes, limiting the potential for lawsuits down the line if parishes or dioceses decide to leave. Details such as how marriage and divorce will be handled are expected to be hammered out before the constitution is ratified in June.

Chicago Bishop Jeffrey Lee said he is disappointed by the group’s decision to leave.

“I’m saddened that some members of the Episcopal Church are choosing to affiliate with other parts of the Anglican Communion,” Lee said. “I think we’re impoverished whenever sisters and brothers are not with us at the same table for the same conversation. There’s real regret attached to that for me.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Common Cause Partnership

Star-Telegram: Fort Worth Episcopal diocese joins new Anglican Church in North America

The Rev. Frederick Schmidt, an Episcopal priest and theology professor at Southern Methodist University, said that only the Archbishop of Canterbury can decide who is a part of the Anglican Communion.

“This would be a little bit like a group of people outside the 50 states of the United States claiming suddenly to be a part of the United States of America,” he said.

Schmidt also questioned the long-term viability of the denomination.

“The question becomes .”‚.”‚. Can you actually build a church around a negative?” he said.

David Holmes, a religion professor at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va., said he believes that the 100,000-strong denomination can survive.

He noted that one group joining the new denomination first split from the Episcopal Church in the 1870s.

“The point is that if a group that broke off .”‚.”‚. lasted over 140 years, this is a much larger group that has more substance in terms of membership and prestige,” he said.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Proposed Formation of a new North American Province, Common Cause Partnership