The Reformed Episcopal Diocese of the Southeast is about to consecrate a new bishop.
It recently elected the Very Rev. Alphonza Gadsden of St. Stephen, and his consecration is tentatively set for 2 p.m. Nov. 17 in Redeemer Reformed Episcopal Church in Pineville.
Invitations will go out as soon as a few remaining standing committees officially endorse the election, said the Rev. Canon J. Ronald Moock. The invitation list will include the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina, he said.
The Reformed Episcopal Diocese was formed in the 1800s when the Episcopal Church would not ordain black clergy. The local Reformed Episcopal diocese and the local Episcopal diocese officially bridged the old racial divide with a joint Communion service in 2003, the same year the national Episcopal Church consented to the consecration of an openly gay bishop. Both diocese issued statements opposing the Episcopal Church’s action.
The Reformed Episcopal Church is aligned with the Common Cause Partnership, a network of Anglican churches that view the Episcopal Church as out of fellowship with the majority of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina is a partner through the Anglican Communion Network.