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Episcopal Church owns Falls Church property; Supreme Court lets Virginia court ruling stand
By Robert Barnes
THE WASHINGTON POST
March 10, 2014
The Supreme Court on Monday let stand a Virginia court's ruling that the Episcopal Church owns the historic property known as the Falls Church, the subject of a bitter, multimillion-dollar property dispute with a conservative congregation that left the denomination.
The justices gave no reason for declining to review the decision of the Virginia Supreme Court that the 3,000-member congregation, which voted in 2006 to leave the Episcopal Church, did not have the right to keep the sprawling property known as the Falls Church.
Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina Seeks Provisional Primatial Oversight
By David W. Virtue
March 8, 2014
The Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina is looking for an ecclesiastical home.
Since leaving the Episcopal Church it has not come under any Episcopal or Anglican authority and has resisted coming under the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA).
An upcoming resolution to be presented at their Annual Diocesan Convention March 14-15 could change all that. In response to an offer by the newly created Global South Primatial Oversight Council for pastoral oversight, the diocese seeks to have a formal ecclesiastical connection to the larger Communion and a consequent pastoral relationship.
AUSTRALIA: Bishop Sarah Macneil Conducted Same-Sex "Blessing" While Diocesan Archdeacon
By DAVID OULD
March 7, 2014
The following comment was left on my website on Wednesday evening,
A few years ago a person who is the daughter of Christian friends of mine entered into a lesbian relationship in Canberra. The two young women participated in a same gender civil union ceremony at an embassy as one of them came from that country. They then participated in a faux "wedding" ceremony conducted by Rev Sarah Macneil at Sarah's Canberra church. Sarah "got around" both the Church and civil law illegalities of the Church ceremony by describing the ceremony as a "blessing of two individuals" or some such phrase. My friends tell me that the ceremony had all the hallmarks of a church wedding with invitations, walks down the aisle, hymns, prayers with the couple standing at the front before the congregation of invited family and friends etc.
BETHLEHEM: Episcopal Diocese had not done Audit since 2007
Letter from the Standing Committee says lack of Audit shows diocese failed its members
February 25, 2014
Editorial note: This letter comes from the Standing Committee and will also be available on NewSpin. The President of the Standing Committee, Canon Gerns, has sent it to Vestry Officers and Bethlehem Clergy News prior to posting on the web site and newSpin blogs.
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
Before we gather to elect a bishop provisional on Saturday, I wanted to inform you of an important piece of diocesan news that has just recently come to light.
Anglican Church in Nigeria subjects members to oath denouncing homosexuality
Church recognizes that those with such sexual orientation needed help and counselling
March 2, 2014
The Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) has introduced a clause in its constitution subjecting members, who intend to hold positions in church, to take an oath of allegiance to God denouncing homosexuality.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the public denunciation took place in Abuja on Sunday at St. Matthews, Maitama, during the swearing-in of new members of the Parish Church Council (PCC).
The Vicar of the church, Ven. Ben Idume, who administered the oath to members of the PCC, said the church recognised that those with such sexual orientation needed help and counselling.
When the Christian Global South Heads West
by Alexander Griswold
February 28, 2014
A group of Christian scholars discuss the rise of Christianity in the Global South and its implications for the West in a February 26th event at the Library of Congress. (Photo credit: Alexander Griswold)
Between 1910 and 2010, the global center of Christianity shifted from Spain to Timbuktu. As far back as 1980, there have been more Christians living in the Global South than in the first world. On any given Sunday, there are more Christians attending church in China than in the United States or Europe.
PINE BLUFF, AR: Grace Church to transgendered priest: No, thank you
Lenten focus taken off the Cross and put on the struggle for gender identity
By Mary Ann Mueller
VOL Special Correspondent
March 1, 2014
As Ash Wednesday approaches and the Lenten journey to Calvary is about to begin, a male priest at Grace Episcopal Church announced to his small congregation Sunday that although he was born a male he now sees himself as a female -- so please call him "Gwen."
His announcement sent shock waves throughout the parish, the wider south central Arkansas community, and on up to the Diocese of Arkansas and Bishop Larry Benfield (XIII Arkansas), causing him to step in and take charge. By midweek, the transgendered priest was stripped of "his" altar and of "her" pulpit. However, s/he was not inhibited; his Episcopal priesthood remains intact.
"There's lots of misinformation floating around out there about the diocese's response to a priest announcing that that priest is transgender," the Diocesan website noted on Thursday. "To be clear, the Episcopal Diocese of Arkansas has NOT severed ties with the priest. Our prayers and support are with the priest during this time."
Episcopal Bishop Maurice "Ben" Benitez Dies
Diocese of Texas Press Release
March 1, 2014
The Rt. Rev. Maurice M. "Ben" Benitez, 6th Bishop of Texas, died Thursday, February 27 in Austin, TX. Please keep Bishop Benitez's daughters, Jennifer Shand, Leslie Benitez, and Deborah Smith, and their families in your prayers.
Two funeral services for Bishop Benitez will be held on Monday, March 3 at 3 p.m. at St. Luke's on the Lake, Austin (5600 Ranch Road 620 North), and on Thursday, March 6 at 12 p.m. at St. John the Divine, Houston (2450 River Oaks Blvd). At both services, bishops and priests are invited to vest (cassock and surplice, white stole).
May the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.
Contentious Views Dominate Female Bishop's Tenure
BY STEVE KRASKE UP TO DATE KCUR
FeB. 25, 2014
THE FOLLOWING INTERVIEW WAS TRANSCRIBED BY MARY ANN MUELLER FOR VIRTUEONLINE
The Episcopal Church's first female presiding bishop has experienced her share of strong reactions to her progressive views on gay marriage, immigration and more. Katharine Jefferts Schori is Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church In the first part of Tuesday's Up to Date, Katharine Jefferts Schori joins us to talk about her positions on these issues. We also talk about what's next for the 110 church dioceses she oversees. *
Guest: Katharine Jefferts Schori, Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church since 2006
HEAR MORE: Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori will deliver the second annual C.S. Lewis Legacy Lecture on the campus of Westminster College in Fulton, Mo., at 11 a.m. Thursday. Her lecture on the topic of science and religion is free and open to the public.
Forward in Faith calls on Nashotah House to Rescind Invitation to Jefferts Schori
FORWARD IN FAITH
February 26, 2014
The National Council of FIFNA endorses and affirms the ACNA College of Bishops' statement (See below) issued on Feb 25, 2014, regarding the invitation to Dr. Katharine Jefferts Schori to preach at Nashotah House.
In the interest of restoring "the trust that this particular invitation has seriously shaken," we request that the invitation either be rescinded or that the venue be changed to an academic lecture by Dr. Katharine Jefferts Schori in a non-liturgical context, followed by a time for discussion and response.
ARKANSAS: Pine Bluff Episcopalian priest says he is transgendered
PINE BLUFF COMMERCIAL
Feb. 24, 2014
The Rev. Greg Fry, priest-in-charge at Grace Episcopal Church in Pine Bluff, told his congregation Sunday morning that he is transgendered and identifies himself as a woman, apparently becoming the only working member of the Episcopalian clergy in Arkansas ever to make such an announcement.
Church members and officials at Grace Episcopal declined comment on Monday, while one member said church leaders in the vestry were scheduled to meet on Wednesday, after which they may be in a better position to discuss the matter.
ACNA College of Bishops Blasts Nashotah House Decision to Invite Episcopal Presiding Bishop
A Statement on Nashotah House from the College of Bishops
February 26, 2014
At the request of the Bishops of the Anglican Church in North America, meeting in conference call on Tuesday, February 25, I have been asked to make the following statement:
"The Bishops of the Anglican Church in North America deeply regret the invitation by Dean Edward Salmon to Dr. Katharine Jefferts Schori to preach at Nashotah House.
The insensitivity of this invitation to many of the loyal friends of the House is compounded by the proposed eucharistic context. What is far more concerning, however, are the fundamental spiritual, biblical and institutional issues that the visit to Chapel raises.
Mid-America Diocese of the APA elects a Bishop Coadjutor
February 25, 2014
On Saturday, February 22, 2014, the delegates of the Diocese of Mid-America, Anglican Province of America, unanimously elected the Rt. Rev. Robert Todd Giffin, the present Bishop Suffragan, to be Bishop Coadjutor of the Diocese.
He will succeed the Rt. Rev. Dr. Larry Lee Shaver as Bishop Ordinary when he retires at the 2015 Diocesan Synod.
The Synod was well attended, and was held at the Anglican Church of St. Andrew the Evangelist in Merrillville, Indiana.
The Rev. Canon John W. Berry, Canon Missioner of the Diocese, was the Celebrant.
Bishop Giffin holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Butler University in Indianapolis, Indiana, and a Master of Divinity from Nashotah House Theological Seminary in Nashotah, Wisconsin.
ZANZIBAR: Two Bombs Blast Anglican Cathedral
By David W. Virtue
February 24, 2014
Two bombs went off sequentially this afternoon at the main entrance to Christ Church Cathedral and the Former Slave Market, the largest tourist attraction on the island, Anglican missionary Jerry Kramer has told VOL.
"We thank God there were no injuries. Police are investigating and have swept the compound. We are assessing the situation and we are in contact with multiple agencies and Western government officials. The British Consul was on site almost immediately and a tremendous help to us. The people here are obviously shaken. Please pray for us."
Katherine Jefferts Schori's invitation to Nashotah House stirs Hornet's Nest
Three students request her appearance results in major public relations nightmare
By Mary Ann Mueller
VOL Special Correspondent
February 22, 2014
NASHOTAH, WISCONSIN --- Little did three Nashotah House seminary students realize last October, when they approached the theological school's Board of Trustees to humbly request that an invitation be issued to Episcopal Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori to "come and see", that it would ultimately result in two revered bishops either out right quitting the Board or distancing themselves from The House.
At that time, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) Archbishop Robert Duncan and ACNA Bishop Jack Iker (IV Fort Worth) were in Nairobi attending GAFCON II while Nashotah's trustees were discerning the students' desire to see the current Episcopal Presiding Bishop come to The Episcopal Church's .crown jewel of Anglo-Catholic seminary training.
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