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         

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Week Ending 11/16/15

Episcopal Diocese Celebrates at 150th Annual Convention

The Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh turned the first night of its traditional two-day convention into a celebration of its 150th anniversary as a diocese.  The celebration featured an extended history exhibit, buffet dinner, and a talk by Bishop Sean Rowe of the Diocese of Northwest Pennsylvania.  When the Pittsburgh diocese was founded, its bounds included Northwest Pennsylvania. During the business day, the convention heard not only the bishop's address and usual reports, adopted a balanced budget and elected people to diocesan offices, but continued the celebration with the reading of a resolution passed at General Convention in July 2015 honoring the diocese, special notices of the anniversary throughout the day.

Church Leaders Around the World Respond to the Terrorist Attacks

Leaders of a number of the dioceses and provinces belonging to the Anglican Communion responded to the terrorist attacks in Paris, and to those in Beirut two days earlier.  In general, they expressed shock and concern for those grieving and reminded people that Christians were to respond in love.  The American Cathedral in Paris sponsored an interfaith forum a few days after the attack urging responses of peace and dialogue.  The following statements give a sample:  Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, the Archbishop of Canterbury, The Dean of the American Cathedral in Paris, Bishop Pierre Whalon (formerly of Pittsburgh)  of the Convocation in Europe of Episcopal Churches, the Bishop of the Diocese in Europe, and a statement first issued by Bishop Dorsey McConnell of Pittsburgh during the diocesan convention.

Episcopal Church Leaders Respond to Cries to Bar Syrian Refugees

As some politicians issue calls to stiffen the screening of Refugees or bar them entirely, and others suggest closing all mosques, Episcopal leaders urge the church members to respond to fear with love,  and follow the commandments of Christ to care for refugees.  Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, the Bishop of Arizona, and the Provisional Bishop of Fort Worth are among those countering the calls for new restrictions.  Episcopalians wishing to be better informed on the Syrian Refugee crisis can make use of a webinar being offered on-line.  Besides offering the live webinar twice (Nov. 19 and Nov. 23), it will be available after the fact, on-demand.

Queen Katherine Parr Wrote Prayer in Elizabethean Book of Common Prayer

New evidence has come to light showing that the author of the prayer for the monarch included in the Elizabethan Book of Common Prayer and still found in the prayer books of a number of Anglican Provinces was written by Katherine Parr, the sixth wife of Henry VIII.  Scholars are thus revising the idea that only ordained men were consulted in the drafting and writing of the Book of Common Prayer.

Bexley-Seabury Seminary Heads to Chicago

Bexley Hall in Columbus, Ohio and Seabury Western Seminary in Illinois merged several years ago and chose to have its main physical location in Columbus where Bexley had a long-standing partnership with Trinity Lutheran Seminary.  Now, the seminary will move offices and classes to Chicago where the seminary had maintained a secondary office.  The agreement with Trinity expires in the spring of 2016, and the new unified site will begin offering all of its classes from Chicago in fall 2016.

Updated Information on the St. James Newport Beach Controversy Available

There have been very few reports on what has been happening in the controversy over the Sale of the property of St. James the Great in Newport Beach and the resultant charges filed against Los Angeles Bishop Bruno by parishioners since efforts to reach conciliation broke down.  (See the most recent Update story here.) Now parishioners have updated the "Save St. James" web site including an updated timeline that covers a number of developments in October and early November, including that the Committee of Review in the canonical charges has now referred the matter to a conference panel, that the Griffith Corporation (original donor of the land) has filed a SLAPP suit, and that the judge assigned to hear the SLAPP issue recused himself because he was an Episcopalian.