But the lines got blurred, and now both of the Rev. William Warnky's careers are in jeopardy.
Securities regulators suspended the Dallas man's registration as a broker last week. They said he had defrauded a former client and disregarded an order to repay him $50,000.
At least one other former client has accused Warnky of financial misconduct and is also seeking a repayment order, according to Financial Industry Regulatory Authority records.
Dallas Episcopal Diocese leaders are now studying whether to suspend the priest from ministry, a top church official said Friday.
"He's innocent until proven guilty," said Bishop Suffragan Paul Lambert, the diocese's No. 2 official.
But he also noted that one of Warnky's accusers was a member of his congregation. And the diocese, he added, tells clergy not to become financially involved with parishioners.
"We have some very clear rules," Lambert said.
Warnky did not respond to an interview request left Friday with a staffer at his Good Samaritan Episcopal Church, a few blocks south of White Rock Lake. She said he was out of town, visiting his terminally ill mother.
The Dallas Diocesan Newspaper interviews the bishops about Lambeth. these are conservative bishops who are not in favor of the realignment.
ESPRIT: So where from here?
+JMS: It depends much on the will of the Communion. Bishops acting unilaterally do not help this. The future of the Communion depends on those who are willing to forgo what they perceive to be their rights and their prerogatives and agree to live with and for others. We’ve been deaf to that call. It just depends on the will of those who are in leadership and who say, you know, the time has come to work together in unity. As far as I’m concerned as diocesan bishop, we have strong ties and relationships with the Anglican Communion, the Archbishop of Canterbury, and the Global South. The Global South bishops invited both Bishop Paul and me to a meeting with them. We cherish those relationships, and we will continue to witness and carry out our part in the Anglican Communion.
+PEL: I don’t know how I can expand upon that. We need to be faithful to the Scriptures and our Lord’s command to go forth into the world, but one of the things I’m trying to live into is what it means to be faithful to the vows I took when I was consecrated. There are some significant vows there. I think the House of Bishops and all bishops would do well to read those every day.