Episcopalians told they must ignore conservatives

By George Conger CEN

EPISCOPALIANS should pay no heed to the views of conservative scholars and bishops, but should place their trust in her, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said this week.

Her remarks came as a new front opened in the Episcopal Church’s civil war over homosexuality, with the national Church sending out skirmishers for an impending legal assault against the traditionalist Bishop of South Carolina, the Rt. Rev Mark Lawrence.

On Feb 9 Bishop Lawrence announced he was postponing the diocese’s annual synod from March 4 to March 26 to permit him time to respond to the “unjust intrusion into the spiritual and jurisdictional affairs of this sovereign diocese of the Episcopal Church” by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori.

With his announcement he provided copies of letters showing that the former chancellor of the diocese, Thomas Tisdale, Jr., had written to the current chancellor Wade Logan III seeking copies of the minutes of all standing committee meetings held since he took office. He also wanted a copy of oaths of conformity given to the new clergy, and the parish by-laws and other documents from four parishes that have indicated they may quit the Episcopal Church. In the lawyers’ exchange, Tisdale, who styled himself “South Carolina counsel for the Episcopal Church” told Logan, that it was his understanding that Bishop Lawrence would not take any legal action in response to “recent and ongoing actions by some congregations in our diocese that threaten to ‘withdraw their parishes from the diocese and the Episcopal Church.”

Logan responded that no parishes had quit the diocese during Bishop Lawrence’s tenure, and that “the bishop, was the sovereign authority in this diocese. Logan added that “it seems transparent that the Episcopal Church is trying very hard to find a reason to involve either the bishop or the diocese, or perhaps both, in an adversarial situation.”Read the rest of this entry »

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