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         

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Week Ending 11/27/17

South Carolina Break-Away Group Continues Legal Action

The break-away group in South Carolina followed through on their hints and announced they were filing a U. S. Supreme Court appeal, claiming that state supreme court's denial of their requests for recusal and rehearing raised issues of unfairness and religious freedom.  However, the future filings will need to be more honest than the amica brief filed by 106 supposed religious leaders in the latest state court round.  When the Update reported on this brief, we raised questions about the signers.  Blogger Steve Skaradon went farther by actually checking the names.  Several of those he called claimed they had not given permission for the use of their names or were unaware of the brief.  Be sure read his posts from November 21-25, 2017.

Archbishop Sentamu Responds to Regime Change in Zimbabwe

Ten years ago on British TV, Archbishop Sentamu, originally from Zimbabwe, took off his clergy collar and cut it into pieces, vowing not to wear it again until President Mugabe was no longer in office in Zimbabwe.  This week in another TV interview, he gladly put his collar back on.  He has also been offering prayers for his former country, and advising that they cannot just stitch over the years of hurt and may need a Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

California Parishes Begin Healing After Fires

Pittsburgh Episcopal Update has carried stories on the response of Episcopal Parishes to the California fires (most recently here).  The latest ENS story is about two parishes beginning the process of healing.

ACNA Groups in Scotland and Canada Get New Members

Apparently the election of a woman as bishop was the last straw for one parish in the Scottish Episcopal Church.  The parish was already unhappy with the decision of the church to allow same-sex marriage.  The parish announced it was leaving the Scottish Episcopal Church and had been accepted by the ACNA consecrated bishop, Andrew Lines.  The Isle of Harris is the southern part of an island off the coast of Scotland.  Its mostly Presbyterian inhabitants (total population less than 2000) is conservative.  The parish membership is quite small, 15 in attendance on the Sunday when one blogger wrote about his visit.

Meanwhile in Canada the Anglican Network (ACNA) announced that the Anglican Church of Canada's  retired Bishop of Caledonia, William Anderson, has joined the Anglican Network.  Anderson protested the treatment of  Jacob Worley whose election as his successor was not confirmed by the provincial bishops (the Church of Canada uses the term "province" for regional groupings), and who was most recently removed from his parish and ministry by the new bishop of Caledonia.  (See Update here).  The Anglican Journal has full coverage with comments from the Anglican Church Archbishop.

San Joaquin Diocese Celebrates Recovery 

The Presiding Bishop, Michael Curry and House of Deputies President Gay Jennings were both present for a weekend of celebrations spread across the  Diocese of San Joaquin.  The high point of the celebration was the institution of Bishop David Rice as diocesan bishop.  Rice had been provisional bishop.  San Joaquin used the occasion to highlight its recovery and its outreach and advocacy.  It also was the occasion of a ceremonial presentation of a check for $1 million to the Episcopal Church, completing San Joaquin's commitment to an agreement that cleared them of debt owed to the Episcopal Church from loans that sustained them during their long legal battle for diocesan assets.  For Bishop Curry, it was another of his "revival" visits, the first of which was to Pittsburgh last February. The ENS story provides full coverage.

Porn Ring Arrests Snare Episcopal Rector

The Rev. Michael Rich was arrested as part of a state-wide sweep of child predators in Alabama.  Rich, rector of St. Andrew's Church in Birmingham was charged with possession and distribution of child pornography. The Episcopal Diocese immediately suspended Rich from all parochial and priestly duties.  

English Same-Sex Couples Not Rushing to Have Church Weddings

According to a recent study, those places of worship that have registered as sites willing to hold services marrying same-sex couples have seen very limited response.  In some cases there are simply few to no options, but even where there are registered sites, there have been few weddings. None are part of the Church of England, although Hereford Diocese has raised the issue for Church of England synod discussion. It is not clear if it is lack of options, or lack of interest by the couples that has resulted in the underwhelming response.

Prince Harry's Engagement Show Changes in Church of England

The announcement of Prince Harry's engagement to American Meghan Markle has resulted in a discussion of religion.  Some sources reported that Markle was Jewish and other that she was Roman Catholic.  Both are incorrect.  Markel's first marriage was to a Jewish man, and she attended a Roman Catholic girl's school, but in neither case did she practice those religions.  The fact that the Church of England is not raising any objections to the fact that she is divorced, and the couple will marry this spring in a Church of England ceremony.  Religion News has a good article exploring the shifting stands on remarriage of divorced persons by the Church of England, especially how it has affected the royal family. .