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, February 25, 2013

News for Week Ending 2/24/2013

Uganda anti-gay bill nears top of legislative agenda

The Erasing 76 Crimes blog reported February 19, 2013, that the notorious so-called “Kill the Gays” bill is nearing consideration by the Uganda Parliament. A February 20 follow-up post suggests that the bill may not be debated quite so soon. Of course, passage of the anti-gay bill has repeatedly been predicted, but it remains only a bill. (See Pittsburgh Update story here.) Although the Ugandan people have been represented as favoring the bill, David Cecil, a gay British theatrical producer who was deported from Uganda, asserts, “Uganda is not a terrible place and most people are not homophobic but they are conservative. There are pastors preaching hate, they are the problem.” (See story from the London Evening Standard.)

Presiding Bishop to attend Welby Enthronement

According to Episcopal News Service, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori will attend the Canterbury Cathedral enthronement of Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby March 21, 2013. She will also attend the Primates Standing Committee, of which she is an elected member.

Maryland congregation votes to become Roman Catholic; property to stay with diocese

Members of St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church in Catonsville, Maryland, voted February 10, 2013, to leave The Episcopal Church for the The Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter, in which they will become Roman Catholics while retaining some Anglican practices. (See Pittsburgh Update story here.) For now, both Catholic and Episcopal services will be held in the Ingleside Avenue church. The property will be retained by the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland, and the new Roman Catholic parish will identify a worship site after Easter. Details can be read in the February 20 story from Episcopal News Service.

Religion News Service offers perspective on Texas and South Carolina property cases

A Religion News Service story published by The Huffington Post, offers analysis of the church property disputes in Fort Worth and South Carolina. The article does not predict the outcome of the litigation, but it does point out some of the differences between these cases and other recent church property cases.

South Carolina church votes to join Lawrence faction

VirtueOnline reported February 24, 2013, that Old St. Andrew’s Parish Church of Charleston, South Carolina,, voted February 24 to amend its governing documents to eliminate references to The Episcopal Church, thereby aligning itself with former Bishop of South Carolina Mark Lawrence and those who claim to have removed the Diocese of South Carolina from The Episcopal Church. (See Pittsburgh Update story here.) Both Lawrence and the Episcopal Church’s Provisional  Bishop Charles vonRosenberg had addressed parishioners prior to the February 24 vote. The vote was approximately 3 to 1 against continuing the parish’s Episcopal Church affiliation. The VirtueOnline story was preceded by this analysis the day before.

Bishop McConnell to receive honorary degree

The General Theological Seminary in New York City has announced recipients of honorary Doctor of Divinity degrees to be awarded at the 191st commencement ceremonies to be held May 15, 2013. One of the recipients will be our own bishop, Dorsey McConnell. Details can be found here.

Bishop writes diocese about coming conversations

Bishop Dorsey McConnell has written the diocese about the coming conversation regarding human sexuality. In a letter dated February 25, 2013, and sent to the Grace Happens mailing list, he offers this explanation:
The reason for this dialogue, as a practical matter, is to help inform my decision as your bishop on how the diocese should approach two issues current in the Church: the blessing of same-sex relationships and the ordination of partnered gay or lesbian persons. An equally important purpose is for us to come together as a diocese in constructive conversation to find and follow continuing paths to healing and reconciliation.
Bishop McConnell’s complete letter can be read here.