Category : TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

(JE) Jeff Walton writes about ACNA as the leaders meet to choose a successor to Bob Duncan

The denomination’s path has not been without conflict: in 2010, the Anglican Mission in America (AMIA), a founding organization of ACNA and part of the Anglican Church of Rwanda, announced it was transitioning to “missionary partner” ”“ a lower level of affiliation with ACNA. Eighteen months later, the AMIA experienced a crisis when its officials unilaterally severed their connection with the Rwandan church, forfeiting ACNA missionary partner status. The dispute was partly resolved when two-thirds of AMIA congregations opted to affiliate with ACNA by directly joining its dioceses or through a new Rwandan-sponsored missionary jurisdiction. The remaining third of AMIA congregations recast themselves as a mission society with connections to the Anglican Church of Congo.

Many ACNA congregations that departed the Episcopal Church have also endured litigation over disputed church properties with their former denomination. While Duncan has acknowledged the pain of the past split for many congregations and the difficulty of contentious litigation, he has encouraged congregations to prioritize evangelism and not to dwell on past disputes.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Evangelism and Church Growth, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, TEC Departing Parishes, Theology

(Tribune-Review) All Saints Anglican moves into former Cranberry church in the Pittsburgh Area

The congregation of about 100, led by the Rev. Paul Cooper, took up residence in the former Crossroads Community Church at the intersection of Rochester and Haine School roads in January, ending its three-and-a-half year journey to find a permanent home.

Formerly St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church in Marshall, the congregation was one of 41 to leave the Episcopal diocese in 2008 over theological differences. The congregation joined the more conservative, biblically oriented Anglican Diocese of North America, but legal differences with the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh over property left the parish without a house of worship in spring 2010.

“We just laid down our labors and said, ”˜OK we’re leaving,’” said Cooper, 41.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Parish Ministry, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, TEC Departing Parishes

ACNA's Bob Duncan on the Pittsburgh same sex blessings memo

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

(Living Church) More Bridges for Pittsburgh

“Part of the sadness of this conflict is that a lot of people of different stripes felt themselves abused and weakened,” [Dorsey] McConnell said, adding that he will “strive less for grand theological consensus than for basic pastoral care.”

“I want people to know I love them and I pray for them and I don’t want anyone ostracized from any conversation.”

The new bishop is enthusiastic about the city that has called him as its first non-provisional bishop since Bishop Duncan helped found the ACNA.

“Pittsburgh has become a very young and cool place. There’s a wide open mission field,” he said. “Everybody out there is looking for two things: they’re looking for mercy and they’re looking for hope. I’m definitely a missionary bishop and this is a missionary diocese.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Parish Ministry, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

(Post-Gazette) The Rector of Calvary Episcopal Church in Pittsburgh retires

When the Rev. Harold T. Lewis became rector of the mostly white and wealthy Calvary Episcopal Church in Shadyside in 1996, the city was reeling from racial turmoil, and Father Lewis, who is African-American, was expected to be a leader in addressing social injustice.
But circumstances have led him to retire as a renowned advocate for Episcopal canon law.
Five years before the 2008 schism in the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh, he filed a lawsuit to stop anyone from taking property out of the Episcopal Church.
“If you had asked me when I was ordained … if I would ever sue my bishop, I would have said you were crazy,” said Father Lewis, 65, who retired Sunday.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, TEC Parishes

(Tribune-Review) Pittsburgh Episcopalians install new bishop in tradition-bound ceremony

A church rocked by divisions over beliefs came together in jubilation on Saturday as leaders of the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh consecrated the Rev. Dorsey McConnell as its first permanent bishop since 2008.

“The last four years have been trying, but it’s wonderful to have someone here now, especially a man like Bishop McConnell,” said Judith Waldorf, 62, of Shaler, who was among 400 people who filled Calvary Episcopal Church in East Liberty for the ceremony. “This is a wonderful day and I’m blessed to be here.”

Church leaders elected Mc-Connell, 58, to bishop in April. He previously served as rector of Church of the Redeemer in Chestnut Hill, Mass. He succeeds the Right Rev. Kenneth L. Price Jr., who served as provisional bishop since 2009.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

(Post-Gazette) Unity a theme at new Pittsburgh Episcopal bishop's consecration

Amid the gothic grandeur of the consecration of a new bishop for the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh, a man in an overcoat and fedora suddenly held forth from the center aisle about a vision he said God had given him for a new bridge in Pittsburgh.

The speaker was the about-to-be-consecrated Bishop Dorsey Winter Marsden McConnell. The Yale-educated former actor, 58, teamed with diocesan youth to stage a parable about an engineer who couldn’t persuade anyone to build his “Bridge of the Angels” but used its model to save many families from a fire that broke out amid the great Pittsburgh flood of 1936….

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils

(Post-Gazette) Episcopal bishop ready for life in Pittsburgh, post-schism

When Bishop-elect Dorsey McConnell was chosen to lead an Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh still deeply wounded from a 2008 schism, he prepared to face anger, resentment and grief. He wasn’t prepared for the drivers.

“I had to get used to driving here because people are so polite,” said the bishop-elect, who hails from Boston. “I’ve been unnerved by the kindness of people in traffic. They let you turn left in front of them. I love this city.”

The question is whether the diocese will turn left. Pittsburgh has been among the most theologically conservative dioceses in an increasingly liberal denomination. That culminated in a 2008 split in which its last tenured bishop led a majority of parishes and clergy out of the Episcopal Church in a dispute over biblical theology and gay ordination. But some conservatives believed schism was wrong and remain in the Episcopal diocese, which is still fairly conservative by Episcopal standards. It has 9,000 members in 33 parishes.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, Parish Ministry, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, Urban/City Life and Issues

(Tribune-Review) Pittsburgh Bishop-elect to take reins of divided Episcopal diocese

While the Rev. Dorsey McConnell is getting to know the windy roads and unusual landscape of Western Pennsylvania, he said he’s learned, “if you make a wrong turn, you don’t regret it.”

McConnell’s path to religion has had similar detours, all which led to his role as bishop-elect of the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh.

McConnell will be consecrated on Saturday in Calvary Episcopal Church in East Liberty. The diocese has 36 active congregations in 11 counties.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

Divided Pittsburgh Episcopal dioceses team to support ministry for homeless, hungry

Two factions that divided the Episcopal church in Pittsburgh four years ago as part of a national schism have agreed to work together to support a ministry for homeless veterans and others in need.

An accord between the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh and the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh clears the way for Shepherd’s Heart Fellowship to take title to all property at its Uptown location and to seek a more favorable financing of its debt.

The Episcopal Diocese considers the ministry of paramount importance, spokesman Rich Creehan said.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Defense, National Security, Military, Episcopal Church (TEC), Parish Ministry, Poverty, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, Urban/City Life and Issues

(Post-Gazette) Episcopal Diocese settles on Uptown property in Pittsburgh

The Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh has reached a settlement with Shepherd’s Heart Fellowship in Uptown, giving that ministry to the homeless clear title to all of its property and assets despite its affiliation with the rival Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh.

A joint statement from the Episcopal Diocese and Shepherd’s Heart stressed that its ministry to the poor was unique and “this agreement should not be interpreted as a model for resolving other property disputes.”

The Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh split in 2008, with the majority of its parishes leaving the Episcopal Church for the theologically conservative Anglican Church in North America. The Episcopal Diocese won a court battle awarding it all centrally held diocesan assets, but parish property is to be settled on a case-by-case basis.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, TEC Departing Parishes

TEC Diocese of Pittsburgh Settles with Shepherd's Heart Fellowship

(Please note you may find more about this ministry here and there–KSH).

The agreement builds on a long-standing support of the Shepherd’s Heart ministry by many parishes of the Episcopal Diocese, who, along with individual parishioners, regularly donate, prepare and serve meals to the Shepherd’s Heart congregation. This has continued in spite of differences over whether Shepherd’s Heart Fellowship validly withdrew from the Episcopal Church in October 2008 and is now part of the Anglican Church in North America. The agreement sets this issue aside in favor of mutually serving the homeless, the poor, and the addicted. Both parties recognize the new relationship between the Episcopal Diocese and Shepherd’s Heart Fellowship is not of an ecclesiastical nature, such as would normally exist between a diocese and a parish, but one of cooperation and collaboration in a specialized ministry. Because of this unique use of the Shepherd’s Heart property, the parties have agreed that this agreement should not be interpreted as a model for resolving other property disputes.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Defense, National Security, Military, Economy, Episcopal Church (TEC), Housing/Real Estate Market, Law & Legal Issues, Parish Ministry, Poverty, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, Urban/City Life and Issues

Bishop of Bolivia Called as Assistant Bishop for the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh

Bishop Frank Lyons has been called by Archbishop Robert Duncan, and with unanimous support from the Standing Committee, to serve as Assistant Bishop in the Diocese of Pittsburgh. As Assistant Bishop, Lyons will assist with pastoral care and oversight to clergy and congregations in the Diocese of Pittsburgh during Archbishop Duncan’s tenure as archbishop. Bishop Lyons will also exercise a special superintendence of diocesan congregations located beyond the Pittsburgh area.

“We are delighted to welcome Bishop Frank and his wife, Shawnee, to the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh. Bishop Frank is a highly capable leader who brings with him a wealth of experience. I am confident that he will provide the support our clergy and congregations need during this amazing period in our life together as a diocese,” said Archbishop Duncan.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Bolivia, Episcopal Church (TEC), South America, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh Area Anglican church in Peters hands over property, debt to Episcopal Diocese

The congregation of St. David’s Anglican Church in Peters will hand over its property, its name and its debt of nearly $1 million to the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh and start over in a former Catholic church in Canonsburg.

The move is the latest in a property dispute between the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh and the rival Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh. The diocese split in 2008, with a majority leaving the Episcopal Church for the theologically conservative Anglican Church in North America.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Economy, Episcopal Church (TEC), Housing/Real Estate Market, Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, The Banking System/Sector

A Lengthy Post-Gazette Article on the upcoming Pittsburgh Episcopal Election

Lionel Deimel, a member of St. Paul’s in Mt. Lebanon who blogs on church matters from a liberal perspective, declared his opposition to any local candidate before Father [Scott] Quinn was named. He argued that all local priests carry factional baggage and that the diocese was too ingrown….

The Rev. James Simons, a theological conservative who had a leading role in reorganizing the diocese after the split, hasn’t chosen a candidate yet, and said that the value of an inside candidate depends on the person.

“It can be argued both ways,” he said. “When you elect from within the diocese, the learning curve is less steep. You don’t have to learn the history because you lived the history. On the other hand, sometimes it’s good to have someone looking at things with fresh eyes. It all depends on who that individual is.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Pastoral Theology, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, Theology

(Pittsburgh Tribune-Review) Trinity Cathedral picks Episcopal affiliation

Ending three years of sitting on the fence during a breakup over doctrine, leaders of a historic Downtown church decided to break away from the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh and affiliate exclusively with the Episcopal Church.

Trinity Cathedral’s governing board last week voted 11-7 to withdraw from the more theologically conservative sect, overturning an October 2008 resolution to serve both the Episcopal Church diocese and the Anglican diocese.

“This decision was not made lightly or hastily,” the Rev. Catherine M. Brall, provost at the cathedral, said in a letter to members. “Many, if not most, of the comments made during the lengthy time of discussion had been previously raised.”

Anglican officials said they were “saddened” by the vote.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Anglican Identity, Episcopal Church (TEC), Parish Ministry, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, TEC Parishes

An Important Announcement from the Provost of Trinity Cathedral, Pittsburgh

Yesterday evening the Chapter of Trinity Cathedral voted to re-affirm its Charter of Incorporation. Article II of the Charter states its purpose as “For the support and maintenance of a cathedral church for the public worship of Almighty God according to the faith, doctrine and discipline of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America” and Article V further clarifies Trinity Cathedral’s historic identity: “This corporation acknowledges religious allegiance to the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America and that portion of the same known as the Diocese of Pittsburgh and will be subject to and governed by the laws, rules, and regulations of the same as set forth in the constitutions and canons of said Church and said Diocese.” Chapter’s decision brings to conclusion the difficult and weighty matters with which they had been wrestling during the past six months. It also effectively ends the governance provisions of the Special Resolution which was adopted by Chapter in August, 2008 and ratified by the parish in September, 2008.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

(Post-Gazette) Property litigation involving Pittsburgh Episcopal Diocese is over

Eight years of property litigation involving the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh has ended, but most parishes that broke from the Episcopal Church still face negotiations over their buildings.

After the Pennsylvania Supreme Court last week denied an appeal from the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh, which had argued that it owned the property, the Anglican decided diocese it will not appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, spokesman David Trautman said.

“This whole string of litigation is ended, is done,” he said.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, Parish Ministry, Stewardship, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania Rejects ACNA's Appeal

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

Penn Hills church in Pittsburgh Anglican Diocese abandons its building

Another congregation in the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh has decided to abandon its building, saying that it couldn’t meet the financial or ecclesiastical demands that the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh made during negotiations for the property.

On Oct. 2 the 104 members of All Saints Church in Penn Hills will begin holding services in nearby Rosedale United Methodist Church….

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Economy, Episcopal Church (TEC), Housing/Real Estate Market, Law & Legal Issues, Parish Ministry, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

Diocese of Pittsburgh Developments (V)–Dave Wilson's Comments

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

Diocese of Pittsburgh Developments (IV)–Lionel Diemel's Comments

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

Diocese of Pittsburgh Developments (III)–Post-Gazette Article

Members of an Anglican parish in Penn Hills have quietly handed over their building to the rival Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh, saying they couldn’t accept the ground rules for property negotiation and believed it was better to rent space in a different church nearby.

It’s the latest development in a split and legal dispute between the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh and the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh. The Episcopal diocese said it didn’t ask the congregation to vacate St. James Church on Frankstown Road but will start its own services there. The Anglican pastor said he hoped to maintain good relationships with Episcopal colleagues.

“We’ll have a positive attitude about this move,” said the Rev. Doug Sherman, rector of St. James Anglican Church, which will now worship in Faith Community Church. “We made the right decision, and we’re excited. It’s hard leaving a building that you’ve been in for 50 years and that people have paid for. But we look forward to continuing our ministry in Penn Hills.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

Diocese of Pittsburgh Developments (II)–Episcopal Diocese Release

Beginning this first weekend of July 2011, the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh plans to re-establish congregations in at least three locations that have been without an Episcopal Church presence for several years.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

Diocese of Pittsburgh Developments (I)–Anglican Diocese Release

For over 50 years, the congregation at St. James Episcopal Church has ministered to the Penn Hills community at their Frankstown Road location. The congregation is now moving, after accepting the kind offer of Faith Community Church to share their building and facilities at 501 Jefferson Road, Penn Hills. Concurrent with the move, the congregation is pleased to announce the formation of a new congregation in the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh: St. James Anglican Church.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

(Tribune-Review) Episcopal bishop foresees shift for church buildings

The Episcopal Church will remain a work in progress as it rebuilds from a 2008 schism and seeks to attract members, its leader said on Tuesday.

“We’re a community that is on the road together, wrestling with what it means to be a Christian in this particular age,” Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said before a morning service at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Wilkinsburg. “In order to communicate that message, we have to go out into the community.”

That may or may not include establishing traditional churches, said Jefferts Schori, who last visited the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh about a month after a majority of clergy and lay deputies voted to break with the church she leads to follow their more theologically conservative bishop, Robert Duncan, who formed the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh.

Although the two churches battled over property in court, Jefferts Schori said she forsees a day when churches will become something different.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, Presiding Bishop, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

Despite turmoil, Episcopal Presiding Bishop believes Anglican Communion is stronger than ever

She does have two principles that she would like to see followed.

“Our task is to see that the value of those gifts [to the Episcopal Church] not be inappropriately disposed of. We have to recover some approximation of fair market value for properties,” she said.

The second principle “is that we shouldn’t be in the business of setting up competing ecclesiastical interests with Episcopal Church resources.”

She can’t simply give the property to the people who want to leave the Episcopal Church, because that would violate her responsibility to guard the inheritance of the denomination that she leads, she said.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Archbishop of Canterbury, Episcopal Church (TEC), Presiding Bishop, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

(Post-Gazette) Episcopal Presiding Bishop to visit Pittsburgh

Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori of the Episcopal Church is making a Holy Week visit to Pittsburgh, where the Episcopal Diocese split in 2008.

She will answer questions from the public Tuesday evening at Trinity Cathedral, Downtown. She also will preach and preside earlier that day in Wilkinsburg as Episcopal clergy renew their ordination vows to Bishop Kenneth Price Jr., of Pittsburgh.

“I look forward to joining the clergy of the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh as we gather to renew our ordination vows,” Bishop Jefferts Schori said. “There is a particular solemnity about celebrating this rite in a community which has experienced division over those very vows.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Episcopal Church (TEC), Holy Week, Presiding Bishop, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh

Ron Dern Chimes In

I belong to a small beautiful Episcopal church in McKeesport that is caught in the [Pittsburgh] bishops’ war. Like the Civil War, the church members were pitted against each other. Family members split on which bishop to follow and lifelong friends parted ways. Empty pews far outweigh the occupied pews. The church will survive or fail because of the good people who go there to praise God each week, not from any help from higher up in whatever diocese wins the next round.

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

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, Parish Ministry, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, TEC Departing Parishes, TEC Parishes

Appeals Court Order Lets Decision Stand in Pittsburgh

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh