Pittsburgh Update

Pittsburgh Update publishes weekly summaries of recent developments in the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh, The Episcopal Church, and the Anglican Communion that affect or could affect Pittsburgh Episcopalians. Emphasis is on reporting, not interpretation. This is a service of Progressive Episcopalians of Pittsburgh. This site is in no way affiliated with the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh or the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh.

A Pittsburgh Episcopal Voice          

A Service of Progressive Episcopalians of Pittsburgh         

Monday, November 26, 2012

News for Week Ending 11/26/2012

Uruguay feels ‘abandoned and unsupported’ by Standing Committee

Anglican Journal reported November 22, 2012, that the Diocese of Uruguay feels “abandoned and unsupported” after the Standing Committee (formerly the Joint Standing Committee of the Primates and the Anglican Consultative Council) failed to approve its request to become a part of the Igreja Episcopal Anglicana do Brasil, rather than the Iglesia Anglicana del Cono Sur de America. The diocese had cited theological difference with the Southern Cone, in particular, on the matter of women’s ordination, and wanted to become a part of the more liberal Brazilian church.

There seems to be some confusion over just what the Standing Committee did. According to Anglican Journal, the Standing Committee “turned down its request to change provinces.” The Anglican Communion News Service story of October 26, however, indicated that “The Standing Committee decided to convene a subgroup to consider next steps in responding to the [Uruguay] diocese.”

Women bishops measure defeated in CoE

On November 20, 2012, the General Synod of the Church of England defeated a measure to allow for women bishops. (See Pittsburgh Update story here.) The compromise measure required a two-thirds vote among bishops, clergy, and lay members of the General Synod. It failed narrowly among the laity. The measure was strongly supported by Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and his designated successor Justin Welby. Episcopal News Service covered the story here, and published a follow-up story on the aftermath of the defeat.

The defeat is widely viewed as a debacle. It has been covered extensively in news stories, and commentary about the vote has also been extensive. Anyone wishing to explore in depth what is being said about the failed measure should consult Thinking Anglican (beginning here), which has covered the matter with its usual thoroughness. Perhaps the most insightful commentary on the mess the Church of England has gotten itself into is an essay by Linda Woodhead on the Modern Church Web site. A post at The Lead gives a good sense of the consternation caused by the General Synod vote.

Diocese of Va. asks for Supreme Court rehearing

The Episcopal Diocese of Virginia has asked the state Supreme Court to rehear its cross-appeal in the Falls Church case that was recently rejected by the court. (See Pittsburgh Update story here.) The diocese and The Episcopal Church want to establish their trust interest in parish property. The petition for a rehearing was filed November 12, 2012. A friend of the court brief from various parties was filed at the same time.

Reunification of Quincy and Chicago dioceses moves forward

Plans to combine the dioceses of Quincy and Chicago are moving forward. (See Pittsburgh Update story here.) Representatives from Quincy attended the annual convention of the Diocese of Chicago November 16 and 17, 2012. The convention passed a resolution “that affirms the Diocese of Chicago’s intent to pursue reunification with Quincy and directs the bishop, with the advice and consent of the Standing Committee, to seek approval of the Quincy Reunion Agreement” according to a story about the convention on the Diocese of Chicago Web site.

Calvary rector retires

The Rev. Dr. Harold T. Lewis, rector of Calvary Church, officially retired November 25, 2012. Lewis will be remembered for many things, particularly for the so-called Calvary lawsuit against then-bishop Robert Duncan. That the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh is in control of diocesan properties is a direct result of the litigation began by Lewis in 2003. Lewis’s retirement was covered in a front-page story in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.