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         

Monday, October 20, 2008

News for Week Ending 10/20/2008

Duncan warns English traditionalists

After conferring with like-minded members of the Church of England, deposed Pittsburgh bishop Robert Duncan held a press conference October 17, 2008, at All Souls Church, Langham Place, London. Duncan thanked members of the Anglican Communion for their support and warned members of the English church that what happened to him could happen to traditionalist members of the Church of England. Saying that he was deposed “unjustly and uncanonically,” Duncan described church liberals as having “a kind of totalitarian political agenda: that is to say you will do it our way or you will at best be silent or at worst we will banish you.”

Episcopal News Service posted this story on the press conference. Anglican Mainstream has posted a transcript of Duncan’s statement and his responses to questions on its Web site.

Muslim Episcopal priest inhibited

The Episcopal priest who declared herself also to be a Muslim has been inhibited by Bishop of Rhode Island Geralyn Wolf. It seems likely that the Rev. Ann Holmes Redding will, after the six-month prohibition from exercising her her priestly gifts, be deposed. Until recently, Redding was director of faith formation and renewal at Seattle’s St. Mark’s Cathedral. Critics of The Episcopal Church had used this case as an example of the ways the church has supposedly strayed from Christianity.

Episcopal News Service reported on the inhibition here. The Seattle Times has a story here.

Fort Worth scheme fails

Attempts to accommodate parishes in the Diocese of Fort Worth wishing to remain in The Episcopal Church after an anticipated vote for “realignment” at the diocese’s annual convention on November 14–15 have come to naught. Some in the dioceses of Fort Worth and Dallas were investigating schemes to transfer loyal Episcopal parishes to the Diocese of Dallas. Proponents of such a plan have concluded that it is canonically unworkable. The story was reported by Episcopal News Service on October 14, 2008.

Virginia vows to fight on

Bishop Peter Lee of the Diocese of Virginia has vowed to “vigorously appeal every court decision that denies any Episcopalians their rightful church homes.” The pledge was made in a posting on the diocese’s Web site October 16, 2008, in response to another unfavorable ruling by Virginia Circuit Court Judge Randy Bellows in the property dispute with congregations that have left The Episcopal Church. Pittsburgh Update’s most recent story on the long-running legal battle that continues in court this week can be found here.

San Joaquin accuses clergy of abandonment

Nearly a year after the convention of the Diocese of San Joaquin voted to leave The Episcopal Church and join the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone, the Standing Committee of the Episcopal Church diocese has charged 52 members of the clergy with abandonment of the communion of The Episcopal Church. An October 17, 2008, press release from the diocese lists 16 deacons and 36 priests who face inhibition and deposition.

Pennsylvania bishops support Pittsburgh Episcopalians

The bishops of the other Episcopal Church dioceses in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania—Northwest Pennsylvania, Central Pennsylvania, Bethlehem, and Pennsylvania—have written to the Diocese of Pittsburgh “to let you know of our admiration, love, and concern for you in this challenging and hope-filled time.” In their letter, the text of which is on the diocesan Web site, the bishops promise “to do anything and everything in our power to assist you in your reorganization and in your moving ahead in mission.”

Pittsburgh ECW reorganizing

The schism in the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh resulting from the “realignment” vote of October 4, 2008—see story here—is affecting not only the diocese, but organizations within it. According to the Diocese of Pittsburgh Web site, the local Episcopal Church Women group is reorganizing, as many members of its board “belong to parishes that now see themselves aligned with the Province of the Southern Cone.” ECW members in The Episcopal Church are being requested to contact Linda Getts. More information is available from the link given above.

Presiding Bishop to preach at Calvary

The Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church, who, under the now-departed diocesan leadership, was not welcome in the Diocese of Pittsburgh, will preach and celebrate the Eucharist at Calvary Church on November 2, 2008. As announced on Calvary’s Web site, the Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori will officiate at the 11 AM service on the Sunday following All Saints’ Day.