Week ending 8/3/15
Consecration of Three Peruvian Bishops Is First Step to Formation of a New Anglican Province.The Diocese of Peru in the Anglican Church of South America has taken a major step towards eventual autonomy as a separate province in the Anglican Communion. In a service attended by representatives from around the Anglican Communion, three missionary bishops who are Peruvians have been consecrated. They will serve missionary districts in north Peru, south Peru and the central highlands. The Diocese of Peru originated as a mission to provide services to ex-patriot English speakers in Lima. The Cathedral in Lima still offers English language services. However, there are now more than 50 Spanish-speaking congregations in the diocese. The missionary bishops will work with these missions and help them grow into full parishes. When the missionary districts are strong enough to be full dioceses, the Diocese of Peru will become the Diocese of Lima, and the four dioceses will seek autonomy as the Church in Peru.
Site Preparation Begins to Rebuild Cathedral in HaitiNearly five years after an earthquake devastated parts of Haiti and destroyed the Episcopal Cathedral, site preparation has finally begun to rebuild the cathedral. Because the building will incorporate latest engineering to protect against both hurricanes and earthquakes, and because the new cathedral will be large than the old, costs are estimated at more than $25 million. The full plan includes a worship space and three chapels along with other meeting space. One of the chapels will include three murals salvaged from the ruins of the old cathedral. Costs considerations will require building in stages with the worship space to be phase one.
Charges Against Bishop Bruno EscalateBishop Clay Matthews, serving as intake officer for Title IV issues involving bishops has referred the charges filed against Bishop Bruno of Los Angles for the manner in which he is attempting to close and sell St. James the Great in Newport Beach. The Review Panel consists of the Presiding Bishop, the Intake Officer, and the Chair of the Disciplinary Committee for Bishops (Bishop Catherine Waynick of Indianapolis). The parishioners have sent further documentation and new evidence of conduct unbecoming a clergy person to the panel. The charges include claims that Bishop Bruno violated instructions by Matthews to not contact those who had signed the complaint. Bruno's lawyer has now threatened civil action against those who signed the complaint.
Organization Supporting Women Clergy in England Challenges Special Chrism MassesWATCH, a major organization supporting women clergy in England filed a formal complaint with the person charged with serving as an arbitrator/reviewer/ombundsman for issues related to women clergy in the Church of England. The complaint argued that 16 separate chrism masses and renewal of vows offered by bishops for those male clergy who cannot accept women's ordination violated some of the legislation passed as part of the approval of women bishops. The reviewer issued a 30 page report in response. The report concluded that the masses did not violate the clauses in question, but also raised concerns about how clergy with different positions on women's ordination could best express mutual support.
Gender Equality Is Focus for Anglican Mission GroupFounded in 1701 as the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, the British charity now know as Us chose the theme of Gender Equality for its annual conference. The Anglican Communion website covered the conference. Speakers for the conference came from Pakistan, India, South Africa as well as England. Their presentations covered a variety of issues around the globe related to women as well as theological exploration of the topic. More information on the presenters and their actual presentations can be found here.
Fort Worth Trial Judge Issues Final DecreeThe breakaway diocese in Fort Worth has announced that Judge Chupp has now signed his final decree in the Fort Worth church property case. Originally the Judge had ruled in favor of faithful Episcopalians, but when the state supreme court ordered a re-trial using "neutral principles" he ruled in favor of the break-away diocese, including a separate hearing on the property of All Saints Church. Signing the final decree now opens a the possibility of appeal of his decision. Pittsburgh Update has followed this case in detail. The most Update story is June 15, 2015.
Toronto Cathedral Hosts Exhibit as Part of Truth and Reconciliation Work
The Toronto Cathedral of the Anglican Church in Canada has been hosting a special exhibit on the experience of people at Canadian Indian Schools and in church missions. The exhibit explores the ways that church-run schools and missions for native peoples in Canada were sites of of pain both culturally and physically, the eventual apology the church has made for the conditions and its efforts at reconciliation. It also celebrates the resiliency of native cultures. The exhibit has attracted wide attendance because its opening coincided with the start of the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games in Toronto. A more detailed description of the exhibit is available on the Anglican Church of Canada website.