Friday, June 17, 2011

Top court refuses to hear appeal over four parish properties

From Vancouver-

The Anglican bishop of New Westminster expressed relief Thursday that the Supreme Court of Canada refused four breakaway congregations leave to appeal a B.C. trial court ruling against them in a property dispute.

The decision by the nation's top court means the trial ruling will stand, putting an end to a challenge launched by a group of conservative dissidents who split from the Anglican Church of Canada over same-sex marriage blessings and how to interpret the Bible.

The trial ruling by a B.C. Supreme Court judge found that the four parish properties -worth $20 million -held by the dissident Anglicans are to be held in trust by the Diocese of New Westminster for those who wish to worship in the Anglican Church of Canada.

That ruling was unanimously upheld by the B.C. Court of Appeal.

"I pray that in time these sad divisions may be healed," the Rt. Rev. Michael Ingham said Thursday. "We are thankful that the litigation launched against the Diocese of New Westminster is now at an end. The money, time, and energy taken up by this long and unnecessary conflict can now be directed back to the real work of the church.

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