My Dear Brother and Sister Clergy in the Diocese of South Carolina,
The 77th General Convention embraced canonical changes and authorized rites that I, as bishop, felt I could not in good conscience embrace, assent to or pretend in the aftermath that a line had not been crossed. I believe it is important for you, the clergy of this diocese who are actively serving in parishes, to hear from me personally regarding this decision and particularly to know what I shared with the House of Bishops in our Private Session in Indianapolis on Wednesday afternoon July 11th. Certainly it is not for me to reveal what others may have said, as such matters are to be held as confidential. But I believe you are entitled to know what I shared in that session. These are demanding times within the life of the Episcopal Church and increasingly so for this Diocese of South Carolina. Therefore, I believe we need to meet””bishop and clergy to engage in pastoral conversation. I have scheduled a clergy day for this Wednesday, July 25th from 1:00””4:00 p.m. at St. Paul’s Summerville. Please make every effort to attend. I would not summon you on such short notice and during the summer if it were not of high importance. That does not mean, however, you should cancel your vacation plans.
Yours in Christ,
–(The Rt. Rev.) Mark Lawrence is Bishop of South Carolina