News for Week Ending 1/12/2015
Religious leaders respond to Charlie Hebdo attackProminent Anglicans responded to the fatal attack on the Charlie Hebdo staff. Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby commented, as did Bishop Pierre Whalon of the Convocation of Episcopal Churches in Europe. (Whalon is headquartered in Paris.) Episcopal News Service ran a story on commentary by religious leaders, including Muslim leaders, here. Episcopal Café also published commentary on the terrorist attack.
Church releases “Report to the Church 2015”On January 9, 2015, the church issued a 200-page Adobe Flash document titled “Report to the Church 2015.” Details about the document and a link to it can be found here. “Report” emphasizes the work done by the churchwide staff, consistently referred to as “the Missionary Society.” A new Web site also appeared this week, with the rather cumbersome name of “Mission Centered Episcopalians Networking for Mission.” This site, too, is attributed to “The Missionary Society of The Episcopal Church.” Details about the new site can be found here.
Executive Council meets in MarylandThe Episcopal Church’s Executive Council met in Linthicum Heights, Maryland, January 9, 10, and 11, 2015. Opening remarks by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori can be read here, and opening remarks by House of Deputies President Gay Jennings are found here. Carole Pryor, of the Diocese of West Missouri, has replaced the resigned Vycke McEwen as Province VII representative on Executive Council. (See story here.) Episcopal News Service summarized the work of Executive Council here. Council also announced Constable Fund Grants. Perhaps of greatest interest to the church at large is the fact that Council approved a draft triennial budget that reduces the asking of dioceses in each on the next three years. Details can be found here.
Curry named board chair of Episcopal Relief & Development; lenten booklets availablePresiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori has named Bishop of North Carolina Michael Curry Chair of the Board of Directors of Episcopal Relief & Development. Curry succeeds Bishop Robert J. O’Neill, who has served since 2009. Details are found in this press release.
Episcopal Relief & Development has also announced that its 2015 Lenten Meditations are now available in English and Spanish. The annual booklets should be ordered by February 4 for delivery for Ash Wednesday. The booklet is also available on-line and in the form of daily e-mail messages. Details can be found in the Episcopal News Service story here.
Bishop Cook jailedMaryland’s Suffragan Bishop Heather Elizabeth Cook has been jailed on a long list of charges related to the December 27, 2014, accident in which the car she was driving hit and killed a bicyclist. (See Pittsburgh Update story here.) It appears that Cook was driving while drunk and texting, causing her car to veer into the bicycle lane and strike 41-year-old Thomas Palermo. Cook is being held on $2.5 million bail. The latest details can be found in this story from The Baltimore Sun. Even before Cook was charged and arrested, disciplinary proceedings were begun against her. (See story here.)
Diocese of Maryland clergy met privately January 6, 2015, to discuss Bishop Cook’s situation. The diocese issued a statement after the meeting. Details were reported by Episcopal Café. The diocese also issued a statement after Bishop Cook was charged.