Category : TEC Conflicts: Central New York

(AP) State Supreme Court to hear legal issues in Episcopal split in eastern SC

A circuit judge held a three-week trial last year and earlier this year ruled the diocese owns it name, symbols and property.

But The Episcopal Church and The Episcopal Church in South Carolina {who formed a new diocese of their own], comprised of parishes in the area remaining with the national church, have appealed.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * South Carolina, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Parish Ministry, Presiding Bishop, Religion & Culture, Stewardship, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central New York, Theology

(AP) Judge makes order permanent in SC Episcopal schism

Circuit Court Judge Diane Goodstein issued a permanent injunction Thursday ruling only churches that left The Episcopal Church last year may use the name the Diocese of South Carolina.

The use of the name and the diocesan seal has been in dispute since parishes in the eastern and lower part of the state left the national church in a dispute over the ordination of gays and other issues.

Following the split with the national church, the Diocese of South Carolina sued, seeking not only to protect its name but also a half-billion of church property it says belongs to the diocese, not the national church.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central New York, TEC Conflicts: South Carolina

Anglican Communion Institute: South Carolina: A Communion Response

First, one major complexity is that the Communion has no clear definition of itself. The oldest and probably still most widely accepted understanding of the Communion is that offered by the 1930 Lambeth Conference and subsequently quoted in the preamble to TEC’s constitution. It defined the Communion as a “fellowship, within the one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, of those duly constituted dioceses, provinces or regional Churches in communion with the See of Canterbury,” which have in common “the Catholic and Apostolic faith and order as they are generally set forth in the Book of Common Prayer”; that “they are particular [dioceses] or national Churches”; and that “they are bound together not by a central legislative and executive authority, but by mutual loyalty sustained through the common counsel of the bishops in conference.”

As we have noted before, this definition reflects the essence of catholic ecclesiology: the people of God are united in one local church by their communion with their recognized bishop, and through the communion of all the bishops in a college of bishops the people of God around the world are joined in one communion.

It is sometimes suggested that a better definition is the membership schedule attached to the constitution of the Anglican Consultative Council. But this definition is clearly inadequate and is not in fact accepted by any of the Instruments as defining the Communion as a whole for all purposes. Indeed, while it purports to be only a definition of ACC membership, the ACC itself does not accept the schedule as performing even that limited role.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Ecclesiology, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central New York, TEC Conflicts: South Carolina, Theology

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

(WSJ) Mollie Ziegler Hemingway on the Episcopal Church: Twenty-First Century Excommunication

Bishop Jefferts Schori says this new Anglican group is encroaching on her church’s jurisdiction, and she has authorized dozens of lawsuits “to protect the assets of the Episcopal Church for the mission of the Episcopal Church.” The Episcopal Church has dedicated $22 million to legal actions against departing clergy, congregations and dioceses, according to Allan Haley, a canon lawyer who has represented a diocese in one such case.

Now the Episcopal Church has upped the ante: It has declared that if congregations break away and buy their sanctuaries, they must disaffiliate from any group that professes to be Anglican.

Rather than agree to this demand to disaffiliate from Anglicanism, Pittsburgh’s All Saints Episcopal Anglican Church last month walked away from the building it had inhabited since 1928. The congregation called the Episcopal Church’s demand “mean-spirited” and an attempt to deny “the freedom of religious affiliation.”

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

Edward Tomlinson–The ongoing saga of the Church of the Good Shepherd in Binghamton, N.Y.

Rather wonderfully the Catholic church came to the rescue offering the abandoned congregation a place in which to worship. That congregation has since doubled, a clear sign of God’s blessing, wheras the church that remained has dwindled and died. Now for the really revealing part of this very shoddy episode”¦.

”¦having claimed that those leaving were not able to uphold the desires of the church founders the Diocese of New York has spitefully sold the building, at a third of the cost the congregation were offering, to the Muslims! How truly shameful that the Episcopal authorities were so full of hatred and malice that they could stoop to such depths.

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

Live the Trinity: Why the Episcopal Church obsession over property?

Church of the Good Shepherd in Binghamton New York. (Been there many times. About one hour south of Ithaca and Cornell University.) One of the few growing and thriving Episcopal parishes in the diocese heck in the state. They left the Diocese of Central New York. They tried to keep their property. They were sued. They lost.

The family was abruptly evicted from the parsonage. The church building was closed. (People who came looking for the soup kitchen hoping for something to eat had to look elsewhere. That is an important point. I will come back to this.)

The Episcopal Church sold the building to Muslims.

Who paid one third what the Church of the Good Shepherd was offering. (There is some question about whether they had the funds to make that offer but that is not the most important issue here.)

To Muslims.

See those nasty traditional Anglicans do not believe in same-sex relations. They do not believe in women in ministry. Oh wait they do because the rector’s wife was associate pastor so I guess they do believe in women priests….

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Episcopal Church (TEC), Islam, Law & Legal Issues, Other Faiths, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central New York, TEC Departing Parishes

Matt Kennedy's Former Parish Sold to Muslims by the Diocese of Central New York

Take the time to read it all as well as looking at the pictures and there is a lot more there.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Episcopal Church (TEC), Islam, Law & Legal Issues, Other Faiths, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central New York, TEC Conflicts: Milwaukee, TEC Departing Parishes

Central New York Episcopal Diocese sues former parish again

Back in 2003, the Episcopal Diocese of Central New York consecrated a gay bishop and allowed others to perform same-sex blessings.

The Church of the Good Shepherd in Binghamton, an Episcopal parish at the time, disagreed with this move and severed ties. Last year, the Diocese sued for Good Shepherd to leave the church building on Conklin Avenue, and in December, a state Supreme Court judge ruled in their favor.

On Friday, both sides were back in court.

“We’ve kind of moved on as a congregation and this is almost looking backwards now. So we were dreading it but here it is,” said Father Matthew Kennedy, Good Shepherd’s head pastor.

This time, the feud centers around a will by former Good Shepherd member Robert Brannan. He died in 1986 and left behind money in a trust fund for his parish.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central Florida, TEC Conflicts: Central New York, TEC Conflicts: Colorado, TEC Conflicts: Connecticut, TEC Conflicts: Florida, TEC Conflicts: Fort Worth, TEC Conflicts: Georgia, TEC Conflicts: Los Angeles, TEC Conflicts: Ohio, TEC Conflicts: Pittsburgh, TEC Conflicts: Rio Grande, TEC Conflicts: San Diego, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin, TEC Conflicts: Virginia, TEC Data, TEC Departing Parishes, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, TEC House of Deputies

Terrii Tex Beam: Anglican Church is 'special'

The little white Anglican church at Livingston Street and Conklin Avenue is a very special place. For me and many more people it is a home and an extended family. Others, such as the Episcopal Diocese of [Central] New York, claim ownership since we are no longer Episcopal, but remain Anglican. Recently the Episcopal Church attempted to evict the Anglican faithful.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central New York

(Binghamton N.Y.) Sun Bulletin: State judge reserves decision on local church

The pastor and parishioners at Church of the Good Shepherd will go to worship Sunday not knowing whether the congregation can stay in its Conklin Avenue building.

A state Supreme Court judge decided Friday to reserve a decision in the legal dispute between the local church and a regional diocese over who owns the property in the wake of Good Shepherd’s withdrawal from the Episcopal denomination.

For now, the congregation will focus on Christmas, according to the Rev. Matthew Kennedy.

“If this is our last Christmas, at least we’ll celebrate it together,” Kennedy said he will tell parishioners at worship Sunday. “Every year, every day, we walk according to God’s grace.”

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

(Binghamton, N.Y.) Sun Bulletin: Court to decide dispute over church property

State Supreme Court Judge Ferris D. Lebous will be asked Friday to decide whether a local church or a regional diocese owns property on Conklin Avenue, which is occupied by Church of the Good Shepherd.

The decision, whether rendered Friday or more likely reserved by Lebous for a future date, could be a precedent in ongoing legal disputes in New York state and elsewhere between the Episcopal Church and individual congregations that have withdrawn from the national denomination.

That split came when V. Gene Robinson, a self-avowed homosexual, was ordained a bishop in 2003.

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

A.S. Haley: Trouble for the Dennis Canon?

The facts presented in the Conger affidavit, based upon a personal examination of the original records, are sufficient to raise a classic issue of disputed fact as to whether or not the Canon properly passed both Houses at General Convention 1979.

Therefore, even with my pre-announced bias, I have no difficulty in opining that the motions brought by the plaintiffs (the Diocese and ECUSA) should be denied on that basis. The plaintiffs should be required to present their evidence of passage at a trial, and let the trier of fact decide whether it is good enough in light of all the evidence.

But what about the motion to dismiss, and the cross-motion for summary judgment on all claims brought by the defendant parish? Here I am afraid I must be consistent, and say that what is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. If there is a disputed issue of fact sufficient to defeat the motions of the Diocese and of ECUSA, then there is a disputed issue of fact preventing resolution as a matter of law of the cross-motions as well.

Read it all and please follow all the links carefully.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central New York, TEC Polity & Canons

The Rev. George Conger's Affidavit regarding his Dennis Canon research

Take the time to go through it all (Hat tip: Stand Firm).

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central New York, TEC Polity & Canons

Good Shepherd Binghamton Asks Judge to Dismiss Lawsuit by CNY Episcopal Diocese

The Church of the Good Shepherd filed motion papers today seeking the dismissal of the lawsuit brought by the Episcopal Diocese of Central New York against the 100 member parish in Binghamton, New York. The motion to dismiss and for summary judgement by the parish was based on the lack of proper adoption of the Dennis Canon by the Episcopal Church. The Diocese previously served a motion against the parish for summary judgment based largely on the Dennis Canon. Both motions are scheduled for oral argument at 9:30 am Friday, December 12, 2008 at the courthouse in downtown Binghamton. Judge Ferris Lebous could issue an immediate ruling, but a written reserved decision from the judge sometime early next year is also possible.

Syracuse attorney Raymond Dague is defending Good Shepherd. The diocesan motion papers were notable for their great bulk, commented the attorney. “The 9″ tall stack of motion papers they served against the parish was too big for an envelope,” said Dague. “A messenger dropped it off at my office in a box.” Today’s more modest filing by the parish claims that the Dennis Canon was not adopted by the 1979 General Convention, and hence the Diocese has no basis for their lawsuit. “Despite that enormous pile of papers, they just assume that the Dennis Canon is the law of the church, but don’t bother in a single sentence to argue that it was properly adopted,” said Dague. “We are going to call them on that. Since the Dennis Canon is the basis of the lawsuit to take away the church building, the judge will need to address this issue one way or the other.”

Dague’s legal papers claim that the Episcopal Church’s own documents and archives show that the Dennis Canon was not adopted.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central New York, TEC Polity & Canons