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 20, 2022

Week Ending 09/19/22

St. Martha's Vineyard Parish Rescues Refugees

When the Florida Governor decided to try to embarrass northern liberals by dumping unsuspecting load of refugees northern locations, he didn't figure on the Episcopalians of Martha's Vineyard,  On September 13, a private plane dropped 43 Spanish speaking refugee families seeking asylum off without any notice to the island officials.  The refugees had been recruited in San Antonio with promises that they would be taken to Boston where jobs and housing awaited them.  They had spent all day on the plane without meals, and after being dumped at airport on the island of Martha's Vineyard had started walking.  Their walk ended when Episcopalians at St. Andrews Church of Edgartown, quickly mobilized, turned their parish hall and basement into emergency shelter, arranged for meals, got a Spanish class from the local high school acting as translators, and began sorting out the immigration status for the migrants. The parish had some experience in housing people since it was part of a homeless shelter program during the winter.  After two days, the migrants were moved to  Joint Base Cape Cod which has more facilities.  The Massachusetts Diocese has provided backup to the parish and is providing some continued support for the migrants after their relocation of Cape Cod. The event backfired on those who had unceremoniously lied to the refugees and dumped them on the summer resort island with a small year-round population because the Episcopalians mobilized the community and responded with radical welcome and aid. The story was carried on national news services.  The Episcopal Church has a strong commitment to helping refugees and migrants.  See the most recent update stories here and here.

Moderator of North India Province Arrested for Fraud

The two provinces in the Anglican Communion  from India are unique bodies merging what were once three different denominations.  However, each is led by a bishop as moderator who participates as a primate in the Anglican Communion.  This last week the moderator of North India was arrested and charged with fraud.  The government is looking at whether the leader of the province had misappropriated funds and also whether the church officials had "bought" converts. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.  The moderator of South Indian was cleared in 2019 of similar charges after going through the same arrest and subsequent legal processes.   

Continuing Stories

Millions Watch Ceremonies for Queen Elizabeth II

This last week saw numerous solemn ceremonies as the body of Queen Elizabeth II was brought from her Scottish home to Edinburgh and then to London.  Well over a quarter of a million people patiently wanted in a line that stretched at its peak to 5 miles with a potential wait of 25 hours in order to file past the Queen's coffin as it lay in state.  On Monday, dignitaries gathered at Westminster Abby for the official funeral service followed my a solemn procession to Windsor where for the committal service. Millions watched services on television and computers and many more in London parks where large screen T.V. provided the broadcast.  It was a moment where Anglican liturgy was at its best  as it laid to rest a woman who had loved the church.   Update carried news of her death and statements by the heads of state and church last week. 

The Latest on the South Carolina Property Transitions. 

This last Sunday, another church building was reopened by the Episcopal Church in South Carolina. Christ Church, Mt. Pleasant has roots dating back to the early 18th century.  The South Carolina Diocese prepared for the reopening by creating a set of You-Tube videos by the the Rev. Furman Buchanan who had been  appointed to serve the church as priest during the rebuilding, but there were no immediate news stories available on the reopening on September 18th, and the parish web site as of this posting still is directing people to the schismatic ACNA parish. The videos are available both on the Diocese of South Carolina You-Tube channel and on the diocesan Facebook page.   Meanwhile, the parish is preparing for the turnover of the St. Christopher's Conference Center and Camp on October 1.  The Diocese has recruited a couple with impressive experience in running church conference centers to lead St. Christophers.  The scepiscopalians.com blog for September 13  has comments on how the ACNA group management has erased the center's Episcopal roots.  Update has carried stories on the previous reopenings of recovered buildings.  The latest is here.