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, April 27, 2021

Week Ending 4/26/21

Key Post for Lambeth Filled by Bishop Who Questions LGBTQ Marriages.

The Archbishops of Canterbury and York have announced the appointment of a person to serve as the  "Bishop to the Archbishops" a position that provides liaison between the two English Archbishops.  The position was re-defined too be more heavily focused on the 2022 Lambeth Conference (delayed from 202 because of the covid-19 pandemic) and in planning meetings of the bishops in the Church of England.  The person chosen, Rt Revd Dr Emma Ineson, bishop of Penrith, unfortunately, does not seem likely to be a good mediator for who might attend the meeting but are divided by their stance on the role of LGBTQ+ people in Anglican Communion.  Ineson was one of the  89 evangelicals who signed a letter sent to all of the Church of England bishops stating their opposition to recognition of same sex marriage and contains language opposing any recognition of relationships other than heterosexual ones.  Thinking Anglicans carried a link to a blog raising these objections and providing access to the statement by the evangelicals.

Continuing Stories

Findings Published From Racial Audit of Church

Update has been posting numerous updates on the efforts of the Episcopal Church to address racism, both within the Church and elsewhere.  Presiding Bishop Michael Curry has made it a major focus of his term in office.  One aspect of this was a racial audit authorized by Executive Council in 2019.  The results of that audit, available in both an executive summary and a full report, are now available.  The audit is really of Episcopal leadership, including Episcopal Church staff, bishops, and members of the House of Deputies (clergy and lay).  It was beyond the scope of the  study to explore the larger world of diocesan and parish experience.  The study is therefore heavy on clergy experience, although including lay leaders.  It outlines 9 "patterns" of response to race, some intended to counter racism but all in some way implicit in racism.  The study also uncovered certain gender divides as well.  The Episcopal News Service has links to both the executive and full reports.

Last Sanctuary Seeker in NC Church Goes Home

 In 2017 the Trump administration revoked annual stays of deportation that had been granted to Juana Luz Tobar Ortega for several years.  Ortega, a grandmother, who had lived in the U.S. for a quarter of a century and was married to an American citizen sought sanctuary at St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in Greensboro.  The congregation has housed and protected her until this month she was again granted a stay of removal and can return to her husband and other family in Asheboro.  She was the last immigrant being housed by a network of sanctuary churches throughout the U.S.

Controversial Los Angeles Former Bishop Dies

Bishop Jon Bruno who led the Los Angeles diocese through a period including attempts by several parishes to withdraw from the Episcopal Church and moved the diocese to be more ethnically inclusive died unexpectedly in his sleep.  As bishop Bruno had had several major health issues, including an infection that required amputation of his foot. His record as a progressive bishop, however, was marred by a controversy over his mishandling of the property and re-building of a congregation decimated by a schism. St. James the Great had been a major source of  resistance to a more inclusive Episcopal Church nationally, and the majority of the congregation tried to leave the Church and keep its property.  Bruno won that battle.  Then the bishop allowed the rebuilding of of a congregation at the church in Newport Beach while secretly planning a multi-million dollar sale of the parish property to a developer.  The congregation, developers, and Bruno ended up in court. Bruno locked the congregation out of the building, which continued to meet, initially outdoors, and then in rented space while the building remained shuttered.  Eventually Bruno faced a Title IV hearing on the Bishop's handling of the sale and treatment of the congregation.  The panel hearing resulted in his suspension.  After his suspension, the congregation was able to return to the building as a mission of the diocese, and has now grown to the point that it is petitioning the diocese for readmission as a diocese.  Update covered all of the St. James controversy.  The final outcome post on the Bruno trial is here.