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.

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A Service of Progressive Episcopalians of Pittsburgh         

Monday, October 7, 2013

News for Week Ending 10/7/2013

Southern Africa completes adoption of Anglican Covenant

The Provincial Synod of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa took a final vote October 4, 2013, to adopt the Anglican Covenant. There was little opposition to the adoption. The action confirms a vote in favor of the Covenant taken three years ago. (See Pittsburgh Update story here.) Anglican Communion News Service reported the recent move here. An accounting of how Anglican Communion churches have dealt with the Covenant to date can be found on the No Anglican Covenant Coalition Web site.

Welby to meet with GAFCON primates

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby will not be attending GAFCON II due to a prior engagement. So Anglican Ink reported on October 1, 2013, suggesting that the prior engagement was the baptism of Prince George. On October 7, 2013, The GAFCON Web Site reported that the archbishop will indeed go to Nairobi and meet with GAFCON primates before the opening of GAFCON II, which is scheduled for October 21–26. The brief notice quoted Peter Jensen’s assertion that the visit was a recognition of the importance of the event. The Telegraph, also on October 7, asserted that the visit to Nairobi was designed to “stave off Anglican schism.” The paper explained that the archbishop will attend “an international church leaders’ gathering” in Iceland, which will preclude his attending the GAFCON meeting. The story did admit, however, that Lambeth Palace claimed the visit was “to show ‘solidarity’ with the Kenyan people in the wake of the Westgate shopping centre atrocity.” (The Lambeth Palace announcement is here. It mentions the October 23 baptism of Prince George, as well as other “long-standing diary commitments.”) Stand Firm offered a typically nasty comment here.

Welby consecrates flying bishop

Although “flying bishops,” special bishops who minister to congregations opposed to the ordination of women, will likely be done away with when the Church of England finally accepts women bishops, Archbishop Justin Welby consecrated “flying bishop” Jonathan Goodall Bishop of Ebbsfleet September 26., 2013. The Tablet reported the story and noted that former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams preached on the need for unity at the service. The announcement of the consecration from Lambeth Palace is here.

Diocese of Huron wins in court

The Sarnia Observer reported September 13, 2013, that the Ontario Court of Appeal affirmed a lower court decision that the property of St. Aidan’s Anglican Church, in Windsor, Ontario, properly belongs the the Anglican Diocese of Huron. The congregation of St. Aidan’s voted in 2008 to leave the Anglican Church of Canada for the Anglican Network in Canada over the blessing of same-sex unions. (See Pittsburgh Update story here.)

The Missionary Society explained, sort of

The Episcopal blogosphere has lately been talking about the recent use of the name “The Missionary Society” to refer (apparently) to the general church staff. Church leaders have yet to justify the use of this name or to explain to what it is intended to refer, but Lionel Deimel has tried to untangle the mystery. His essay, which includes links to other information and commentary, can be found here.

Another commentary on the UTO controversy

A former finance officer of the United Thank Offering has written about the ongoing dispute between the UTO and leaders of The Episcopal Church. (On the dispute, see the Pittsburgh Update story here.) Patricia (Patty) Tourangeau offered her view of the dispute here. She describes the actions of The Episcopal Church as “ecclesiastical purse snatching.”

S.C. Episcopalians petition to lift injunction

The Episcopal Church in South Carolina has petitioned Circuit Court Judge Diane S. Goodstein to lift the injunction prohibiting the Episcopalians of the Diocese of South Carolina from using their proper name. According to an October 7, 2013, press release, “A motion to vacate the injunction [against using the name ‘Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina,’ etc.] was filed with the Circuit Court on September 30, along with a second motion asking the court to issue an injunction against the group that has separated from The Episcopal Church, ordering them to stop using the diocesan name and marks.” (See Pittsburgh Update story here.) The Episcopalians also asked to add specific individuals to the litigation against the Mark Lawrence group, but Judge Goodstein said that that was unnecessary. (See story here.)

South Carolina Episcopalians claims that South Carolina parishes that have left The Episcopal Church are misleading the public by the use of the words “Episcopal” and “Anglican.” Such churches belong neither to The Episcopal Church nor the Anglican Communion.

Pittsburgh Diocese releases convention information

The Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh is gradually releasing information related to the upcoming convention. Registration information and parts of the pre-convention journal are available on the diocesan Web site here.