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, September 15, 2020

Week ending 9/14/20

All items this week are updates on previous postings. 


South Carolina Goes to Court Again

The Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina has filed a second request in federal court for enforcement of the trademark decree that gave the diocese remaining in the Episcopal Church sole rights to claim to be the continuation of the historic diocese.  An earlier request resulted in a cease and desist order against the schismatic group that is now part of ACNA.  Attempts by the ACNA group to have the order stayed and appealed were rejected by the court at the end of 2019, but the diocese and parishes continue to make claims.  The document filed with the court lists statements made on a number of parish web sites and the continuing claims of the group led by Bishop Mark Lawrence that he is the 14th bishop of the diocese.  Lawrence was the 14th bishop until he left the Episcopal Church.  He is now the first bishop of the ACNA diocese.  A summary of the filing is here with links to the full complaint.  

Embattled Oxford Dean Cleared Again

Faculty attempts to have the Dean of Christ Church College and Cathedral removed collapsed after a bitter period of charges and counter-charges, but the Dean's opponents refused to give up and then filed charges he had mishandled cases of sexual misconduct.  That investigation has now been concluded and once again, the dean was cleared with the investigating panel report specifying he handled the charges appropriately.  The Thinking Anglicans site has a summary and links to a number of reactions to the report just issued.  Update has followed the twists and turns of this Oxford dispute which never seems to end. 

Some In-Person Worship To Resume in Atlanta

The Diocese of Atlanta has authorized in-person outdoor worship for parishes that meet certain criteria.  On-line versions of worship will also continue.  Episcopal Dioceses have been among the most cautious in returning to face-to-face worship out of a sense of responsibility to not risk the lives of members or the spread of the covid-19 virus.  Update has been noting the steps taken in a variety of locations. 

Combating Racism and Seeking Reconciliation

A year ago the Diocese of Maryland committed to setting funds aside for reparations for the damage they caused  through their complicity in slavery and racism.  At the diocesan convention this year the the deputies approved setting aside $1 million for work on reparation projects and racial reconciliation, thus beginning the process of implementing the 2019 decision.  Maryland's lead in 2019 was followed by similar statements from two other dioceses and the Virginia Theological Seminary.  The University of South, founded after the Civil War and for years known as an institution with strong ties to the "Lost Cause" ideology has been recently coming to terms with its racist past.  It has removed memorials honoring confederates, led seminars to help other parishes and church institutions do the same, and now has officially repudiated its past ties to the  Confederacy and committed to seeking racial justice.