The Episcopal Church will make sure that any property it sells is not intended for use by parishes that plan to affiliate with other Anglican provinces, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said Sept. 30 on a visit to Grace Cathedral in San Francisco.
Asked if she were satisfied with the agreement by the Diocese of the Rio Grande to sell St. Clement Pro-Cathedral in El Paso, Texas, to the congregation, Bishop Schori said she had recommended two stipulations.
“I’ve told them that my two concerns are that the congregation not set up as another part of the Anglican Communion and that there is some reasonable assurance that it’s a fair sale,” she said.
Bishop Jefferts Schori spoke to reporters before appearing on Grace Cathedral’s Forum, a weekly program, broadcast on the Internet. Bishop Jefferts Schori appeared on the program with the Bishop of California, the Rt. Rev. Marc Handley Andrus. She also preached at the 11 a.m. service.
The issue of control over property is becoming an increasing concern as parishes disaffected by The Episcopal Church’s stance on homosexuality and other matters affiliate with more conservative bishops in other provinces.
Bishop Jefferts Schori’s concerns evidently have not been written into the sale agreement. Bishop Jefferts Schori said she has made herself clear to Bishop Jeffrey Steenson and the diocese, but that it’s “too soon to get a response.”