Category : TEC Departing Parishes

(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.

Read it all.

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

St. John’s awarded to TEC Diocese of San Joaquin, new Anglican parish named

A property rights battle over the historic St. John’s Parish has ended years after a schism erupted within the Episcopal Church when part of the congregation opposed the church’s acceptance of gay pastors.

Superior Court Judge Roger Ross on April 4 awarded the parish in downtown Stockton to the Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin.

The group that had broken away from the diocese – most of them with a history of multiple past generations in the Episcopal Church – and became aligned with the more conservative Anglican Church of North America was ordered out of the building in the ruling.

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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 Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin, TEC Departing Parishes

(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.

Read it all.

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

(World Mag.) Jamie Dean on many departing parishes departing TEC–Tidings of discomfort and joy

A scorched earth policy. That’s how Anglicans who have left The Episcopal Church (TEC) and its endorsement of unbiblical beliefs and actions often describe TEC’s response. From depressed Binghamton, N.Y., to affluent Newport Beach, Calif., TEC leaders have fought dozens of court battles to force congregations leaving the denomination to forfeit the buildings they, their parents, and their grandparents paid for.

[This policy]… is evident…at St. James Anglican Church, which for more than half a century owned property in Newport Beach: The 300-member congregation now meets in a fluorescent-lit room with exposed pipes and concrete walls. It’s a humble setting for an affluent congregation accustomed to soft lighting and stained glass, but a fitting one this month for celebrating the birth of a Savior in a barnyard stable””and that’s one of the providential results of the scorched earth policy.

St. James lost its building even though the church had a written agreement with its diocese that seemed to ensure the congregation’s ownership of the building””but when it was time to part, the diocese and TEC sued the congregation, and a judge cited an Episcopal Church canon declaring that all church property belongs to the diocese and the denomination.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central Florida, TEC Conflicts: Los Angeles, TEC Departing Parishes, Theology

(PR) In Wisconsin, Holy Cross Anglican Church Finds a New Worship Location

–Milwaukee, WI, October 21, 2013

Over the last decade there has been a steady exodus of the faithful out of The Episcopal Church, USA. One congregation, Holy Cross Anglican Church, was one of those. And, after two years of meeting in a classroom for Sunday Worship, Holy Cross is now meeting at 550 N 95th St. Milwaukee 53226.
Holy Cross is growing and helping other grow as followers of Christ as well.
From one of the newer families that have joined us since Spring, 2013 says this about Holy Cross,

Holy Cross is a great place for families to worship together. When our family visited Holy Cross for the first time, we were delighted with how welcoming the congregation is. They didn’t mind that we had our baby with us, or even that she wasn’t perfectly quiet the whole time. In fact, having small children participating in worship is regarded as a blessing by the congregation. At Holy Cross, you will find generations of families worshiping together, being fed by the faithful preaching of the gospel and by the sacraments. For this reason, and for many others, I really believe that the spiritual life of our family is greatly nourished by our involvement at Holy Cross and that it is a great place for our little one to grow in the knowledge and love of the Lord. ”“ Caleb Evans

Holy Cross Anglican Church
Exists to
Make disciples of Jesus Christ,
baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost,
And teaching them to observe all that Christ has commanded us. Matthew 28:19-20

If you would like more information about this church, please contact Fr. Patrick Malone at (262) 207-4113 or email at HolyCrossAnglicanWI [at] gmail[dot] com.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Milwaukee, TEC Departing Parishes

(LA Times) St. James Anglican congregation moves out after court ruling

Parishioners from St. James Anglican Church in Newport Beach wiped tears from their eyes as they left the church after its final service, leaving a house of worship filled with memories.

Jim Dale, 63, said he had been attending church at St. James since he was a boy.

“Being in there today, all the memories came flooding back,” he said after services Sunday. “There are so many memories: my Communion, meeting my wife, marrying my wife.

“It all happened here,” he added.

Read it all.

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: Los Angeles, TEC Departing Parishes, Theology

(OC Register) St. James' Anglicans bid farewell to special worship space of generations

About 80 people Sunday attended the last Mass that will be celebrated at St. James Anglican Church. It was a bittersweet service that brought some parishioners to tears.

The Anglican parish, which has been feuding with its parent affiliation for nearly a decade, was ordered by an Orange County Superior Court judge in May to surrender the property to the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles.

“We’re obviously disappointed,” the Rev. Richard Crocker 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: Los Angeles, TEC Departing Parishes, Theology

A Roanoke, Virginia, Anglican church goes high-tech to spread the gospel

“Dude, I preached from an iPad the week the first iPad came out,” [Quigg] Lawrence said. “I wasn’t trying to be showy with it, but a lot of times my printer is down or I don’t have ink. So it’s just easier to put it on the iPad.”

Church of the Holy Spirit, the Anglican ministry in southwest Roanoke County where Lawrence preaches, is one of the only churches in the area with its own smartphone app designed to serve its members.

The app has been downloaded 880 times in the year it has been available ”” not bad considering the congregation consists of less than 1,500 members.

Read it all and the church website is there.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Anglican Provinces, Blogging & the Internet, Church of Rwanda, Episcopal Church (TEC), Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Science & Technology, TEC Conflicts, TEC Departing Parishes

Angelo Haddad–St. Paul's (Bakersfield, Ca.) is collateral damage from Episcopal Church theology

In its passion to pursue a progressive theological paradigm embracing cultural sensitivity (inclusiveness) and intellectual freedom, TEC cast aside fundamental Christian doctrines, professing, among other things:

* Jesus was not born of a virgin, was not God incarnate, and his resurrection is questionable at best;

* Man needs enlightenment, not salvation; we are to reconcile ourselves with one another, not with God;

* Scripture is not authoritative nor the revealed word of God, but rather metaphorical.

Simply put, Anglicans left TEC because of their faithfulness to the fundamental and historical Christian foundation that the Holy Scriptures are the final authority of its faith.

The tragic fallout of this split is multifaceted. A lady I have known and worshipped with for 30 years approached me, saying homosexuals were not welcome at St. Paul’s. I was taken aback by her misconception. I reminded her that on every Sunday, the priest who is celebrating Holy Communion invites “all baptized Christians as being welcome here at the Lord’s table.” Not blessing same sex unions is an unrelated issue.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Christology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Pastoral Theology, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin, TEC Departing Parishes, TEC Parishes, Theology, Theology: Scripture

'We're not 'the frozen chosen'' Trinity Episcopal Church in Central Florida makes changes

When Father Chris Rodriguez brought his family here from New Jersey last September becoming Trinity Episcopal Church’s new rector, he discovered a congregation that was hurting and needed help.

A little over two years ago, a doctrinal split within the congregation prompted approximately three-fourths of its members to leave. Most followed the former Reverend Loren Coyle, the church’s rector at the time, creating the breakaway, Christ Church at K-Mart Plaza. Soon after, Coyle left the ministry.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Parish Ministry, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central Florida, TEC Departing Parishes

(Columbus Dispatch) St. Matthew’s Episcopal must sell church after split

A Westerville congregation that lost about two-thirds of its members in 2007 after a rift within the Episcopal Church is selling its building and worshipping in a temporary space as it tries to redefine itself as “a church without walls,” its presiding priest said this week.

A “For Sale” is posted in front of the 23,995-square-foot St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church at 233 S. State St., where congregants held their final service on July 7. Their first service in borrowed space at a respite-care center drew about 100 people the following week, said the Rev. Joseph Kovitch, who oversees the congregation.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts, TEC Departing Parishes

Parish, Nebraska Episcopal diocese settle dispute: St. Barnabas can stay on church property

The Episcopal Diocese of Nebraska has settled a dispute with a local parish over whether the congregation could remain in its church building.

In an out-of-court settlement, St. Barnabas parish made a cash payment to the diocese. The settlement enables the congregation to permanently remain on the church property at 129 N. 40th St. Both sides are keeping the amount of the payment confidential.

In 2007, members of St. Barnabas voted to leave the Episcopal Church. The parish disagreed with the Episcopal Church over issues of church doctrine.

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

Diocese of Milwaukee Episcopal church remains vacant after split

Once home to St. Edmond’s Episcopal Church, an empty building at 14625 Watertown Plank Road in Elm Grove serves as a reminder of an emotional church split that ended in a lawsuit over property disagreements.

The 125-member congregation was the first in the state to announce its split with the Episcopal Church in the United States in 2008 and joined the Convocation of Anglicans of North America, part of the more conservative Anglican Church of Nigeria.

The split was prompted by theological differences, including the Diocese of New Hampshire’s consecration of an openly gay bishop in 2003.

Read it all.

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

A S Haley–Confusion (among Amateur Canonists) about a California Ruling involving St. James Parish

Now comes a task I would rather not face, given that I count many non-canon lawyers who are bloggers on Episcopal matters at least as colleagues, if not as personal friends. But in the wake of my commentary on the recent St. James ruling, a host of lay would-be canonists have rushed in to assure everyone that the ruling is not as bad as it is, or that it does not really say what it says. The latest comes from the estimable Father Haller, but he and others have also been contributing to the comments on other blogs. (Note that no one has seen fit to come here and question me directly.)

Let’s clear up one simple matter first: the ruling is not yet precedent for California courts, because it is only the decision of a single trial judge in Orange County, California. As I pointed out in my original post, it will become problematic only if it is affirmed upon appeal. (But as I also pointed out in my post, all of the appeals taken thus far by St. James in this case were decided against them initially by the Court of Appeals.)

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, - Anglican: Analysis, Economy, Episcopal Church (TEC), Housing/Real Estate Market, Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Los Angeles, TEC Departing Parishes, TEC Polity & Canons

Turlock , California, Anglican congregation walks to new venue after closing service

The sign outside St. Francis Anglican Church reads “think FORGIVE act.” Action and forgiveness were the themes of the day, as the parishioners gathered Sunday for one last time at their church on Main Street before walking several blocks away to begin a new church in rented facilities.

The congregation opened its closing service with “Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee,” which includes the words, “Thou art giving and forgiving … teach us how to love each other.”

It was especially poignant because the St. Francis facility has been in a tug-of-war since 2007, when 40 of the 47 parishes in the San Joaquin Diocese voted to leave the national Episcopal church over theological differences. The departing parishes, including St. Francis, and the diocese were sued by the Episcopal church in 2008 and 2009 in a bid to regain those properties.

Read it all.

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

Episcopal Church regains control of two buildings in California; some Anglicans must move

St. Paul’s Anglican Parish in Bakersfield is looking for a new home following a courtroom decision that hands control of its church property back to the Episcopal Church.

The Anglicans are on the move following a little-noticed ruling in February that parishioners in two of several breakaway Kern churches lacked the authority to disaffiliate from the Episcopal Church.

Even though Anglicans at St. Paul’s and St. Michael’s Anglican Church in Ridgecrest both held their own titles to church property, Kern County Superior Court Judge Sidney P. Chapin ruled that they had to vacate.

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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: San Joaquin, TEC Departing Parishes, Theology

An LA Times article on the Recent Decision involving Saint James Anglican and TEC/ Los Angeles

The court order, which comes at what could be the end of a series of court battles over three church properties on 32nd Street, was reaffirmed Monday by Judge Kim G. Dunning.

“I give thanks for the culmination of this marathon litigation, and I pray this action will settle the fact that people can disagree but cannot take property that has been entrusted to the Episcopal Church for ministry,” Right Rev. J. Jon Bruno, bishop of the six-county diocese, said in a statement. “I give thanks to God that, after these cases spanning more than eight years, we now can proceed with the continuing ministry of the Episcopal Church in Newport Beach.”

St. James leaders said they were “obviously disappointed by this ruling.”

Read it all.

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

AS Haley–Judge's Ruling in St. James Case Puts Cloud on Many Former TEC Properties in California

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

Anglicans dedicate New Braunfels, Texas, church today

Christ Our King Anglican Church will dedicate a 16,000-square-foot multipurpose building at 10 a.m. today at its campus in New Braunfels.

In addition, the event will include the ordination of Issac Rehberg and Rodney Wood as transitional deacons by Bishop Bill Atwood of the International Diocese [of the] Anglican Church in North America….

Read it all and the parish website is here.

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

(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

Anglican congregation reopens door in West Endicott, New York

In November 2007, St. Andrew’s vestry relinquished the keys to its church and community center on Mirador Drive after withdrawing from the Episcopal denomination.

The decision ”” which [Tony] Seel called galvanizing in terms of what congregants believed ”” drew national attention in a denominational dispute over the consecration of a homosexual bishop in New Hampshire.

Seel said the opening worship service will mark a new chapter in the congregational life.

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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: Central New York, TEC Departing Parishes

(Groton Patch) In Connecticut, a Meeting To Consider the Future of TEC's Bishop Seabury Church

The Bishop of the Connecticut Episcopal Diocese said Tuesday he would meet with area clergy next week to discuss the future of the Bishop Seabury Church in Groton.

The building has functioned as a church since it as built more than 30 years ago, and was the subject of a lengthy court battle.

The congregation of 750 members, called Bishop Seabury Anglican Church, split with the Episcopal Church in 2007, then wound up in court over whether it could continue to use the building.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Economy, Episcopal Church (TEC), Housing/Real Estate Market, Law & Legal Issues, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Connecticut, TEC Departing Parishes, Theology

In Connecticut, Former Episcopal Parish Holds Last Service In Church

[Ron] Gauss’ parish parted ways with the Episcopal Church of the United States in 2007 after the church ordained an openly gay bishop in New Hampshire and then chose a woman as presiding bishop. The state Supreme Court in 2011 ruled that Bishop Seabury Church was to return everything ”” the 6.5-acre church site, the sanctuary and its contents ”” to the Episcopal diocese. The church appealed the decision to theU.S. Supreme Court, which in June declined to hear the case.

Gauss described the mixed feelings among the parishioners ”“ confusion, anger and sadness ”“ but he was planning to express a different and greater understanding on Sunday.

“I don’t have any animosity,” Gauss said. “I don’t have time to be angry. I have too many people to take care of.”

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

(Moultrie, Georgia, Observer) St. John's leaves Episcopal Church over theological rift

In a statement to his congregation on Sunday, July 29, Fr. McQueen stated that he can no longer remain in the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia due to serious theological differences with the diocese and national Episcopal Church. He invited all who were “willing to make a stand for the historic Christian faith” to join him in stepping out in faith to form a new church, St. Mark’s Anglican Church.

“It had reached a point for me personally where I believed that my adherence to the traditional, historic, catholic faith in a number of matters had been so compromised that I could not stay in the Episcopal Church. Though it is painful to leave the denomination in which I was baptized, confirmed, married, and ordained, I have no reservations about leaving. I firmly believe that God has been preparing me for this very day for a long time,” said Fr. McQueen.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Georgia, TEC Departing Parishes, Theology

Diocese of Connecticut P.R. on U.S. Supreme Court declining review of the Bishop Seabury case

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

Upcoming Service in Maryland will bring Christ the King Anglican parishioners into Catholic Church

A Towson area church will make a faithful transition this weekend as its rector is ordained ”” and its congregation confirmed ”” into the Catholic Church.

Anglican priest Father Edward Meeks ”” of the Christ the King Anglican Parish in Towson ”” will be ordained a Catholic priest by Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington, on June 23, during a ceremony in Washington D.C.

The next day, Sunday, June 24, some 120 of Meek’s parishioners are expected to be received into the Catholic Church during a Mass of Confirmation and Reception at Christ the King, located at 1102 Hart Road.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Roman Catholic, TEC Conflicts, TEC Departing Parishes

A. S. Haley Discusses the Falls Church (Anglican) Petition for Case Review

Virginia must be the only State (of which I am aware) in which there is no automatic right to appeal a judgment in a civil case. Its Courts of Appeal deal exclusively with criminal cases, and that structure leaves only its Supreme Court to deal with civil appeals. The latter court, however, does not have to accept any civil appeal. Instead, the procedure is to file a petition with the Court, which briefly addresses each point of error in the trial court’s decision which the petitioner would like the Supreme Court to agree to hear and resolve. In explaining the points of error, the petitioner must set forth reasons why they are worthy of attention by the State’s highest court.

[On Friday]…came word that one of Virginia’s largest and oldest churches, The Falls Church, which lost its case to be declared the owner, free and clear, of its long-held real and personal property (worth tens of millions of dollars), had filed a petition for review of that decision with the Virginia Supreme Court. Their petition raises six assignments of error.

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

Virginia Attorney General's Amicus Brief in Support of the Falls Church's Petition

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

The Falls Church Petition for Appeal

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

World Magazine profile Story of Falls Church–A great divorce

On Sunday, May 13, Yates preached through Romans 8 during The Falls Church congregation’s last service, urging his congregation to be patient during the coming period of inconvenience. “Some of you will find this inconvenience annoying, upsetting, and you just don’t want to mess with it,” Yates told the congregation. “We have to ask the question, ‘Will we be committed to Christ and committed to our church?'” He read Thomas Paine’s famous passage on “sunshine patriots” written during the Revolutionary War. “I don’t want to be a sunshine Christian,” Yates said. “Will you commit yourself now to no complaining? No grumbling?”‰…”‰If we’re going to navigate truly big challenges that we may face one day, let’s face this one without complaint.”

At the service, five babies and one father were baptized. The congregation sang “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God,” belting the line, “Let goods and kindred go”‰…” One of the clergy prayed for the Episcopal congregation, that it care for “this consecrated place” and preach the gospel. Grown men cried during the last song, “In Christ Alone,” as everyone lifted their arms in the air.

Jim Long, who has attended The Falls Church since 1988, stacked chairs at the end of the service and shrugged when I asked whether he was sad about leaving. One difference he saw was that in these new rotating meeting places, he would have more chairs to set up for the service, and then take down at the end of the service. “Life will go on, we’ll just be in a different building,” he assessed.

Read it all.

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