Thursday, June 25, 2009

Newport Beach church appeals to US Supreme Court

From San Jose Mercury News-

A Newport Beach parish that cut ties with the national Episcopal Church has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to settle a property dispute.

St. James Anglican Church, which cut ties to its parent church five years ago over the ordination of a gay bishop and biblical doctrines, requested Wednesday that the high court decide who owns the parish property.

In January, the California Supreme Court said St. James had the right to disaffiliate with the larger church but could not take parish property with it, even though the parish has held the deed to the church for decades.

St. James says the ruling violates the parish's right to freedom of religious expression and gives preference to hierarchical faiths.

The U.S. Supreme Court could decide whether to hear the case as early as October.

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