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 11, 2013

News for Week Ending 11/11/2013

Woman selected for top WCC post

Anglican Communion News Service reported November 6, 2013, that Dr. Agnes Abuom from the Anglican Church of Kenya, has been elected moderator of the Central Committee for the World Council of Churches, the highest governing body of the WCC. Abuom is the first woman and the first African to hold the top WCC post. Abuom has served on the WCC Executive Committee and was the Africa president for the WCC from 1999 to 2006.

Anglican priest to receive Ratzinger Prize

Church of England priest, the Rev. Canon Richard A. Burridge, Dean of King’s College London, and Professor of Biblical Interpretation, was one of two recipients of the 2013 Ratzinger Prize for Theology October 26, 2013.. The prize was presented to Burridge and to German layman Christian Schaller by Pope Francis. Burridge is the first non-Roman-Catholic recipient of the prize, which is sponsored by a foundation funded by royalties from books written by former Pope, Benedict XVI. The Vatican reported the story here. Additional details can be found in an earlier story from The Catholic Herald.

Marriage equality moves forward in states

Illinois and Hawaii are the latest states poised to implement marriage equality. According to Windy City Times, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn announced November 7, 2013, that he plans to sign the marriage equality bill just passed by the Illinois legislature on November 20. (Bishop of Chicago Jeffrey D. Lee applauded the development in a letter to his diocese.) The Los Angeles Times reported that Hawaii is poised to complete legislative passage of a gay marriage bill this week that will allow gay marriage in the state as early as December 2. Including Illinois and Hawaii, 16 states and the District of Columbia will permit gay marriage.

Task Force on the Study of Marriage issues report

The Episcopal Church’s Task Force on the Study of Marriage, enabled by Resolution A050 of the 2012 General Convention, has issued a progress report on its work. The task force has created three working groups. Details can be read here.

Chicago, Episcopal Church, file suit for property

The Episcopal Diocese of Chicago announced November 6, 2013, that the diocese and The Episcopal Church have filed suit in a state court in Peoria against the faction that broke away from the Diocese of Quincy to regain parish property. (Litigation is ongoing regarding the diocesan property of the former Diocese of Quincy. See Pittsburgh Update story here.) Since the split in the Quincy diocese, the remainder of the Episcopal diocese has merged with the Diocese of Chicago.

Breakaway S.C. diocese seeks additional funds for legal fight

South Carolina Episcopalians reported November 3, 2013, that the breakaway Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina appears to be pressing its churches for additional funds to finance its litigation against the Episcopalians left behind and The Episcopal Church. According to South Carolina Episcopalians, attorney Alan Runyon told the members of St. Michael’s, Charleston, that the church needs to contribute another $150,000 for legal fees in addition to the $50,000 it has already donated. Runyon suggested that parishes in Mark Lawrence’s diocese would be evicted from their buildings should the Lawrence faction fail to prevail in court.

Bishop of Upper S.C. sued

VirtueOnline reported November 6, 2013, that Bishop of Upper South Carolina Andrew Waldo has been sued by a former priest of his diocese for defamation, civil conspiracy, invasion of privacy and economic hardship. The Rev. Earnest Pollock has filed suit against not only the bishop, but also the diocese, its chancellor, and the senior warden of his former church. Pollock left The Episcopal Church in June, and his suit, in part, involves Waldo’s statements concerning Pollock’s status with respect to The Episcopal Church. Additional details can be found in the VirtueOnline story.

More information from annual convention on-line

The Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh has now posted a number of stories about the recent annual convention on its Web site: