Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Anglican Church names new Bishop for Jerusalem

From Jerusalem-

Michael Augustine Owen Lewis, diocesan bishop of Cyprus and the Gulf has been named as the new president bishop of the Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East.

Archbishop Michael, as he will be known henceforth, succeeds the Most Reverend Suheil Dawani. 

Michael will take up his duties on Sunday 17 November 2019, according to a statement by provincial secretary, Georgia Katsantonis.

Lewis has held the position of diocesan bishop of Cyprus and the Gulf for the past twelve years.
Prior to that he was for eight years Bishop of Middleton in the Province of York in the United Kingdom.

More here-


Perhaps The Time Has Come

From The Living Church-

It is an idea which has been mooted on each side of the marriage debate aisle. It has in the main garnered no popular support. But the time has come once more within the Church to debate whether we should cease to perform any marriages—whether same-sex or traditional—which are also legal acts of the State. Should we cut the final Constantinian tether by which the priest serves simultaneously as civil agent? Should we “go European” such that the couple would be declared to be married when they go to get their license, and then receive a blessing, with vows and rings, in a nuptial liturgy in Church.

Let me clear up some immediate misunderstandings. Yes, your child can have the very same service (and reception), except for a few small liturgical emendations. And no, this does not really change much the divide between traditionalists and progressives on marriage.

More here-



From Boston-

Just over a year ago, the day after the deadly mass shooting at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life Synagogue, more than a thousand locals gathered together on the Boston Common to mourn and pray.

As Rev Amy McCreath, dean of the historic St Paul Cathedral that overlooks America’s oldest park, watched people of various faiths unite once again to mourn another national tragedy, she was hit with an emotional realisation.

“I looked out over the crowds of people, and it was so clear that all of them really want a peaceful future,” she remembered. “We want to work together against violence, but we don’t even know each other. Unfortunately, the odds are good that something like that will happen again, and we need to be prepared to support one another and defend one another."

That’s part of the reason the Episcopal cathedral agreed to host a new interfaith art exhibit that explores the faith and life of Abraham, the shared spiritual forefather of the world’s three largest monotheistic religions - and launched an accompanying interfaith book study to spotlight Abraham’s wives, Sarah and Hagar.

More here-


Emmanuel Episcopal holds Underground Railroad program


The spire of Emmanuel Episcopal Church is a beloved landmark at the top of the hill that overlooks Cumberland downtown.

According to local oral history, Emmanuel was an important landmark for African Americans escaping slavery.

The tunnels under the church were a station on the Underground Railroad and provided refuge for those on their way to Pennsylvania.

Emmanuel held a celebration of the Underground Railroad in the local area as well as a commemoration of the anniversary of Emancipation Day on Nov. 1. Maryland was one of the earliest states to abolish slavery — a full year ahead of the 13th Amendment.

More here-


Monday, November 11, 2019

Maine’s Episcopal bishop praises St. Philip’s Church’s community work

From Maine-

“Serving others is a particular strength of St. Philip’s” Episcopal Church in Wiscasset, Bishop of Maine Thomas Brown told attendees at the Hodge Street church Sunday.

Brown told them their work for others is one of the ways they are living their lives without regret and worry. Too often people spend too much time thinking about life after death and not enough on living their lives right now, he said.

Missions based at St. Philip’s include Help Yourself Shelf (HYS) food pantry, Bargain Basement and – with First Congregational Church of Wiscasset as an equal sponsor – Feed Our Scholars and Feed Our Scholars/Set for Success, longtime member Gretchen Burleigh-Johnson said. First Congregational also heavily supports HYS, she said. And from 4 to 5 p.m. Nov. 14, a Souper Supper of broccoli cheese soup, breads, dessert and drink is planned. “All are welcome, no charge. There is a can for donations if people choose to support the events,” she said about the suppers held the second Thursday of the month, through March. St. Philip’s members and other volunteers put on the suppers at the church, 12 Hodge St., St. Philip’s senior warden Jon Young said.

More here-


Caswelll Cooke seeking to 'save a church in decline' with new book

From Connecticut-

Concerned about the survival of the Episcopal Church and alarmed by the downward trends in church attendance, a local man felt the need to sound the alarm and "save a church in decline."

Caswell Cooke Jr., who serves as junior warden on the vestry at Christ Episcopal Church in Westerly and is a seven-term member of the Westerly Town Council, just completed his first book, "The Death and Resurrection of the Episcopal Church (And other Mainline Protestant Denominations) — How to Save a Church in Decline."

Next Sunday, following the 10 a.m. service at Christ Church, Cooke, a lifelong Episcopalian, will talk about his book and sign copies for people interested in buying a copy and learning how to help save churches.

More here-


Sunday, November 10, 2019

‘Wake-up call’: CoGS hears statistics report on church membership decline

From Canada-

The Anglican Church of Canada’s first reliably-collected set of statistics since 2001 show the church running out of members in little more than two decades if the church continues to decline at its current rate, the Council of General Synod (CoGS) heard Friday, Nov. 9.

“We’ve got simple projections from our data that suggest that there will be no members, attenders or givers in the Anglican Church of Canada by approximately 2040,” the Rev. Neil Elliot, a priest for the diocese of Kootenay seconded in 2016 by the national church to collect a new set of statistics, told CoGS. Elliot, who reported on 2017 data collected from all of the church’s dioceses, also told the group about ongoing efforts to expand and diversify data collection.

More here-


Saturday, November 9, 2019

Church of England explains 'official position' on yoga ban

From England-

The Church of England has reacted officially to a  Devon yoga teacher being banned from giving classes in a local church hall for religious reasons.

Yoga teacher Atsuko Kato, 54, said she was told yoga was "not compatible with Christian beliefs".
Atsuko,  who has been teaching yoga for 25 years, was trying to book the church hall at Pilton in Barnstaple last week for a new class.

The Reverend Nigel Dilkes of Pilton Church said: "Pilton church hall is a church property and under the terms of the Trust Deed it is to be used for activities which are compatible with Christian faith."

More here-


Clergy visit highlights Pittsburgh-Ireland ties

From Pittsburgh-

Pittsburgh’s connections with Ireland may not seem apparent at first, but they are deep and ongoing — well beyond the late Pittsburgh Steelers President Dan Rooney’s stint as U.S. ambassador.

An Ireland Institute of Pittsburgh event at the Duquesne Club in Downtown Pittsburgh on Nov. 6 provided an introduction to that relationship with a visit from an Irish delegation.

The visitors were the Rev. Gregory Dunstan, dean of St. Patrick’s Cathedral Armagh, and Francis “Frank” Costello, an American historian and author who has lived in Belfast for 21 years.
“Pittsburgh’s been a really important place on what is the long traditional, cultural and economic link [with Ireland],” Costello said.

The Ireland Institute of Pittsburgh has been organizing student and professional exchanges between Pittsburgh and Ireland since 1989. “We’re forever bringing people in, helping people from Pittsburgh go there, on different kinds of projects,” said James Lamb, institute president.

More here-


Friday, November 8, 2019

Be careful who you call ‘Anglican’

From The Church Times-

THERE is a long history in common-law jurisprudence attached to the idea of “genericisation”: that tipping-point moment when a name one has applied to a specific type of something (usually a brand name) becomes the generic stand-in for all examples of that type. Think of Hoovering up something, or using a Kleenex

In the coming months, as the next Lambeth Conference approaches, “Anglican” is a word in peril of being genericised — and drained of whatever meaningful content it hopes to retain. The basic problem is simple and sharp: “Anglican” is a word without any police to guard it or boundaries to contain it. The result is that it is opportunistically used, loosely applied, and fiercely (and often falsely) claimed.

By now, it is at least clear what “Anglican” is not. It is not a word that describes unity of theological thought or interpretation. It does, perhaps, describe certain theological emphases, or paths of interpretation. It does not (at all) describe a common pattern of ecclesiastical governance or arrangements for polity. And, even in this moment of dreamy, Brexit-induced visions of British cultural superiority, it is not an accurate shorthand for describing one Church more accurately known as the Church of England.

More here-


Pathways out of homelessness, serving the community

From California-

On any given day in San Francisco, roughly 8,000 people experience homelessness. The pathway that individuals and families embark to this situation is as varied as people themselves. People experiencing homelessness not only come from all education levels, races and ethnicities, ages, family structures, sexualities, and genders, but they also arrive at homelessness for a variety of reasons, including eviction, health and medical changes, loss of income, abuse, and abandonment. 

Founded in 1983, Episcopal Community Services of San Francisco (ECS) creates innovative models for addressing homelessness that honor the innate dignity of all people. ECS is San Francisco's largest provider of supportive housing and homeless services. Its continuum of care includes crisis intervention, supportive housing, senior services, workforce development, and soon re-entry.

More here-

Episcopal Diocese of Maryland presents dialogue on reparations

From Maryland-

The Episcopal Diocese of Maryland Truth and Reconciliation Commission hosted the “2019 Trail of Souls Dialogue on Reparations” on Saturday, Nov. 2 at the Saint Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church. 

Featured speakers included: Morgan State University School of Community Health and Policy Associate Professor Lawrence Brown; President of the D.C. chapter of the Union of Black Episcopalians Rev. Gayle Fischer-Stewart; and Messiah College Assistant Professor of Theology Rev. Drew Hart.

Episcopal Bishop of Maryland Eugene Taylor Sutton and Maryland Institute College of Art Professor of Spoken Word Kenneth Morrison also spoke at the event.

Sutton opened the discussion on reparations by arguing for the need to reframe slavery as a form of thievery that continued long after the Fourteenth Amendment was passed. 
He contended that reconciliation will never occur unless large-scale restitution to black individuals occurs first. 

More here-


Thursday, November 7, 2019

City’s Anglican churches plan to merge

From Canada-

One of St. Thomas’s oldest congregations plans to merge with another city church because of escalating costs and a decline in the number of parishioners.

Trinity Anglican Church on Southwick Street and St. John’s Anglican Church on Flora Street each held a meeting recently with parishioners and decided to merge.

The Diocese of Huron will make the final decision Dec. 6 on the proposed merger.

“Both churches have decided to become one church,” said Malcolm Wood, rector warden of Trinity Anglican Church. “In our particular case, what we’ve decided to do, is we’ve decided to reorganize the churches.”

Trinity Anglican Church and St. John’s Anglican Church would cease to exist, and a new name for the merged congregation would be chosen, if the diocese approves the plan.

More here-


Pretoria Anglican priest pleads guilty in sex scandal

From South Africa-

The head of the Anglican Diocese of Pretoria, Bishop Allan Kannemeyer, said it was a sad day that a church tribunal would decide on the fate of a priest facing charges of sexual misconduct. 

Kannemeyer said he was disappointed and angry that one of their priests had pleaded guilty to sexual misconduct with a member of the church.

He said he was sad that one of their own meant to provide guidance and counselling had opted to take advantage of his authority instead.

Kannemeyer was responding to information that the church was yesterday on its second day of a three-day tribunal looking into sexual allegations against one of the clergy.

According to emails sent to the victim, which the Pretoria News has seen, the church acknowledged it had instituted the Diocesan Tribunal to deal with allegations levelled against the priest.

More here-


and here-


Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Row over hijab sparks violence in Malawi

From Malawi-

Blantyre - An ongoing dispute over the hijab - a scarf worn by Muslim women and girls - took a violent turn in eastern Malawi leaving three people injured and property damaged, police confirmed on Tuesday.

"Windows at a mosque and the local priest's home were smashed and three people were hurt during the incident," regional police spokesman Joseph Sauka told dpa.

The clashes - between members of the Anglican church and their Muslim counterparts - erupted on Monday after young men, reportedly from the church, snatched hijabs off the heads of pupils on their way to school in M'manga, about 100 kilometres from the city of Blantyre, he said.

Parish priest Mphatso Bango told dpa that he was living in fear.

"I did not sleep at home as the people destroyed windows of my house," he said, adding that the tense situation was not normal and schools would remain shut.

More here-


Anglican church apologises for fashion show

From Trinidad and Tobago-

THE ANGLICAN CHURCH issued a public apology to Anglicans, religious organisations and the general public for what they called “misuse” of the church.

This comes in the aftermath of a fashion show staged over the weekend at the Trinity Cathedral in Port of Spain.

The fashion show raised the ire of several religious bodies and members of the general public after images of scantily-clad women in the church displaying bikinis designed by locals began circulating on social media.

In the release, Bishop Claude Berkley said the church “missed the mark” with the show and what it featured, and expressed regret and remorse.

More here-


and here


and here-


and here-


Central New York priest under investigation for alleged financial misconduct

From ENS-

An upstate New York priest accused of financial misconduct is now being investigated by law enforcement, according to the Diocese of Central New York, which announced on Oct. 31 that it had turned over the results of its own investigation to police.

The Rev. Joell Szachara had been serving as the rector of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in New Hartford but resigned at the direction of Bishop DeDe Duncan-Probe, the diocese said in late September. At that time, Duncan-Probe placed Szachara on administrative leave, restricting her from engaging in ministry, while a forensic audit was conducted on the finances of St. Stephen’s.

With the audit complete, the diocese – which did not specify the type of financial wrongdoing Szachara has been accused of – referred the case to law enforcement as it continues its own investigation through the Title IV disciplinary process, Duncan-Probe wrote in an Oct. 31 letter to the clergy and wardens of her diocese.

More here-


Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Archbishop demands action on campus "intimidation" and "lack of free speech"

From Premier-

The Archbishop of Canterbury has called on the Government to put pressure on universities over reports of "no-platforming, intimidation and lack of free speech".

The Most Rev Justin Welby told ministers at Westminster that "mere exhortation" was not working.
The leading Anglican made the intervention as peers heard just five universities were known to have adopted an agreed definition of anti-Semitism.

The archbishop, who is President of the Council of Christians and Jews (CCJ), said: "We hear numerous reports of no-platforming, of intimidation and lack of free speech.
"I accept fully that the universities are autonomous but will the minister look for ways in which pressure can be applied to ensure these standards are kept?

"Because mere exhortation, would she agree, is not really working."

More here-


Anglican Dean: ‘I tried to stop them’

From Trinidad and Tobago-

 Dean and Rec­tor at the Holy Trin­i­ty Cathe­dral, Rev­erend Shel­ley Ann Tenia said she was dis­ap­point­ed that the ac­tion of one de­sign­er taint­ed the pub­lic’s view of an event meant to help with the restora­tion of the Port-of-Spain church.

The church was dam­aged by a pow­er­ful earth­quake on Au­gust 21, 2018, dur­ing which the steeple of the church was bro­ken.

Three fash­ion shows were host­ed by Style­Week Port-of-Spain on Fri­day, Sat­ur­day and Sun­day at the An­gli­can church, to raise funds for the church’s restora­tion.

How­ev­er, sev­er­al swim­suit mod­els were cast in the show, which caused an up­roar among many who saw it as a des­e­cra­tion of a holy site.

Rev­erend Tenia ex­plained that there were guide­lines that were agreed to by the or­gan­is­er for the event when they ap­proached the church to use the venue. 

She said based on her in­for­ma­tion, it ap­peared on­ly one of the de­sign­ers went against the church’s guide­lines for the event.

More here-


and here-


Richard Hooker and the Historic Episcopacy

From The Living Church-

Today we commemorate Richard Hooker. In the words of today’s collect, he arose “in a day of bitter controversy to defend with sound reasoning the great charity of the catholic and reformed religion.” I want to consider how the “great charity” of holding the Catholic and Reformed streams together uniquely shapes the Episcopal Church’s ability to engage in ecumenical dialogue. More specifically, I want to explore how Hooker’s argument for keeping the historic episcopacy in his day should influence questions of polity in ecumenical discussions of our own day.

Although Hooker argued for the continuation of the historic episcopacy, it is not clear that he gave an unqualified defense of the episcopacy for all times and places. Yet in the preface to his 19th century collection of Hooker’s Works, John Keble enshrined Hooker’s reputation as the great defender of the historic episcopacy. Keble wrote that although “on the whole, it should seem that where he speaks so largely of the mutability of church laws, government, and discipline,” the actual substance of Hooker’s views were that the “episcopacy grounded on apostolic succession was of supernatural origin and divine authority” (lxxiv–lxxv). In other words, although Hooker entertained the possibility of reform, in Keble’s interpretation, when it came to the question of the historic episcopacy, Hooker spoke only from the Catholic stream and argued that bishops were instituted by divine law.

More here-


In Year of Apology for its Role in Slavery, New York Episcopal Diocese to Revive Rejected Anti-Slavery Motion from 1860

From New York-

In September 1860, John Jay II—grandson of the founding father and first US supreme court chief justice—introduced four resolutions condemning slavery and the slave trade (see link below) at the Episcopal Diocese of New York's annual convention in New York City

Although the slave trade had been illegal in the state of New York since 1799 and the last enslaved persons had been freed in 1827, Jay's resolutions—so uncontroversial today—did not pass.

Instead, they were tabled, in the face of insuperable opposition from an overwhelming majority of the assembled Episcopalian clergy and laity, many of whom continued to have an interest in the slave trade, which in 1860 continued unabated in the port of New York in spite of its illegality and violation of the "teachings of the Church …and the laws of God."  

More here-


Monday, November 4, 2019

Swimsuit models in Cathedral cause uproar

From Trinidad and Tobago-

Pho­tographs of mod­els in bathing suits walk­ing down the aisle of the Holy Trin­i­ty Cathe­dral went vi­ral on so­cial me­dia yes­ter­day as peo­ple ques­tioned the ap­pro­pri­ate­ness of the sit­u­a­tion. The pho­tographs were tak­en dur­ing a fash­ion show which took place at the main church of the An­gli­can dio­cese in T&T on Sat­ur­day night as part of Style Week, Port-of-Spain.

Flags ad­ver­tis­ing the event’s main spon­sor, the Na­tion­al Lot­ter­ies Con­trol Board (NL­CB), were al­so dis­played on the church’s fence.

De­spite the on­line back­lash, how­ev­er, an­oth­er Style Week run­way show was held at the Cathe­dral last night which in­clud­ed on­line swimwear bou­tique, Gen­e­sis Swim.

El­lis Brig­gs, chair­man of Zetick Caribbean Lim­it­ed, the or­gan­is­er of Style Week, told Guardian Me­dia those hav­ing an is­sue with the fash­ion show at the church were just be­ing “hy­per­sen­si­tive”.

More here-

Ordinariates Mark 10 Years of Anglican Traditions and Catholic Communion

From National Catholic Register-

Ten years is not a long time in the life of the Church, but in that time since their founding under Benedict XVI the Ordinariates, three Catholic dioceses with Anglican traditions situated across the globe, have worked with dedication to advance the Church’s Gospel mandate.

On Nov. 4, 2009, Benedict XVI issued his apostolic constitution Anglicanorum coetibus, allowing a wave of Anglican and Episcopal congregations and priests to become fully Catholic and keep their Anglican traditions. Pope Francis has also further advanced what Benedict XVI started, unleashing the Ordinariates for greater Catholic evangelization, witness, and growth.

In this interview with the Register, Bishop Steven Lopes of the Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter, which covers North America, discusses the jubilee year the Ordinariates are now celebrating. He shares the reasons behind the Pope’s strong support, the challenges of the past 10 years, and what lies ahead for the evangelical and ecumenical mission of the Ordinariate.

More here-


Catholic priesthood is based around a 'fundamental lie', says former president Mary McAleese

From Ireland-

Former president of Ireland and the new Chancellor of Trinity College Dublin, Professor Mary McAleese has said she believes the Catholic priesthood is based around “a fundamental lie”. 

She told a conference in TCD on Saturday attended by up to 400 people, including the Provost, Dr Patrick Prendergast, that a clericalised priesthood was not attracting vocations today and that many of those who are attracted to priesthood have a “deeply problematic” sexuality because the Church demands that those priests and seminarians who are not heterosexual pretend to be.

Recalling the six years she spent studying for a doctorate in canon law in Rome, living in the environs of a seminary and monastery, she said she had encountered many young seminarians and priests.

“I became very much aware of the dysfunction at the heart of seminary life and the dysfunction at the heart of much of the priesthood.”

More here-


Folts ordained 11th bishop of Episcopal Diocese of South Dakota

From South Dakota-

Minutes after he had hands laid on him by bishops passing on apostleship from the beginning of the Christian church, newly made Bishop Jonathan Folts told his new flock they were part of Episcopal history being made on Saturday in Pierre.
“Today is the beginning of a new chapter in the life of the Diocese of South Dakota,” he told the congregation of about 320 in the theater at Riggs High School in Pierre. “It’s not a new story.”
Folts and the two-hour ceremony and worship service on Saturday, Nov. 2, told the old story, that the gospel of Jesus Christ has been handed down from the beginning until today.

More here-


Sunday, November 3, 2019

Six years ago, he walked into a homeless center seeking a hot meal. Now, he’s the executive director.

From D.C.

On Friday, Cox started a new and important job, taking on a role that, at once, is distant from the night he slept in a bank lobby and a unique fit because of it. The 54-year-old is the newest executive director of Charlie’s Place, a drop-in center for the homeless in Northwest Washington.

He steps into that position just six years after first walking into the place as a homeless man.

Not long after that night next to the ATM, he started sleeping on benches in Lafayette Square. There, he met a police officer who told him about Charlie’s Place, an outreach arm of St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church. He says he didn’t go that day. But eventually, he walked through the doors, seeking a hot meal.

More here-

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Why the Anglican church must evolve or die

From Australia-

What is the Anglican Church becoming? What does it want to be to the people of Australia? I ask this as a woman who’s invested in Anglicanism but is heartbroken at the way this religion is being riven internally; indeed, it feels vandalised. And by some of its most esteemed church leaders, no less.

The Anglican Church must evolve or die. And right now it feels like it’s being hijacked by bigotry and intolerance in a travesty of Jesus’s teachings. The Archbishop of Sydney, Glenn Davies, has a definition of Anglicanism that is not mine and I am willing to speak out about it. Once, women wouldn’t. Once we weren’t meant to have opinions, we were reduced and silenced within the church; in some quarters still are. We were meant to leave it to those men who knew best, who always know best. They sometimes do not.

More here-

Presiding Bishop Curry, preacher at royal wedding, in Pierre to make a new Episcopal bishop

From South Dakota-

Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, head pastor of the Episcopal Church, is in Pierre to preside over the ordination of the Rev. Jonathan Folts, bishop-elect of the Episcopal Diocese of South Dakota.
On Friday morning, Curry and Folts held a news conference in Trinity Episcopal Church as priests from around the state asked prepared questions.
Folts, who grew up in West Texas and was 51 when he was elected bishop in May of the 9,000 members of the Episcopal Diocese of South Dakota, is the focus of the weekend as he will be ordained and consecrated a bishop to fill that office.

More here-


Evangelism officer for Episcopal Church lives up to her name

From Arkansas-

Meet Jerusalem Jackson Greer. She's a Southern Baptist preacher's daughter, a mother, crafter, cook, farmer, author and, now, staff officer for evangelism in the Episcopal Church.

Greer, who began the new full-time position in March, lives on a small farm named Preservation Acres in Shady Grove near Greenbrier with her husband, Nathan Greer, and sons Miles, 15, and Wylie, 19, when he's home from college.

In the newly established position, Greer said her job will be to help share "what evangelism means in the Episcopal tradition."

"I help coordinate Episcopal revivals that we have across the country ... create curriculum and other tools to help both individuals and congregations to share the good news of God and Christ through word and example," Greer said as she sat in the library of St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Conway.

More here-


Friday, November 1, 2019

I was an Anglican bishop. Then the Pope made an offer I couldn’t refuse

From The Catholic Herald-

It hardly seems possible that it has been 10 years since the publication of the apostolic constitution Anglicanorum coetibus. This allowed for a diocese-like structure to be created for former Anglicans so that they could bring into the Universal Church something of the pastoral, liturgical and spiritual traditions which had formed them over the years.

I vividly remember the day of the announcement. It was something that many of us had been praying for, for a very long time.

In my study, there is a large painting of Mgr Graham Leonard when he was the Anglican Bishop of Truro. In the 1990s, when the Church of England decided to ordain women priests, Bishop Leonard wrote a letter to the Catholic Herald in which he expressed the hope that some structure could be formed, perhaps a personal prelature, to allow former Anglicans to enter the Catholic Church corporately. Years later his hopes were fulfilled by Pope Benedict XVI in a way in that we never could have imagined.

More here-


Falls Church Episcopal’s Healing Rector Leaves After 7 Years of Growth

From Virginia-

The Rev. John Ohmer, who for seven years led the recovery of the congregation of the historic Falls Church Episcopal from its many years of exile, held his final service there last Sunday, departing for a new position in Asheville, North Carolina. Over 400 attended his last service and a reception held after.

When Ohmer came onto the scene at the church in September 2012, the property had just been reclaimed by the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia from a more than six year occupation by defectors who’d voted to leave the denomination in December 2005, but then continued to occupy the property. They voted to leave in large part protesting the Episcopal denomination’s election of an openly-gay bishop in 2003.

During those years of occupation, whose claim to the property after years of litigation was denied by the Virginia Supreme Court and then went unheard by the U.S. Supreme Court, a small remnant of “continuing Episcopalians” persisted, first meeting in the living room of a lay member and then invited to worship in the fellowship hall of the Falls Church Presbyterian Church across the street.

More here-


Paula White, Trump’s Personal Pastor, Joins the White House

From The New York Times-

Paula White, a televangelist based in Florida and personal pastor to President Trump whom he has known since 2002, has joined the Trump administration in an official capacity, according to a White House official.

Ms. White will work in the Office of Public Liaison, the official said, which is the division of the White House overseeing outreach to groups and coalitions organizing key parts of the president’s base. Her role will be to advise the administration’s Faith and Opportunity Initiative, which Mr. Trump established last year by executive order and which aims to give religious groups more of a voice in government programs devoted to issues like defending religious liberty and fighting poverty.

More here-

Folts to be consecrated bishop of Episcopal Diocese of SD

From South Dakota-

The Rev. Jonathan Folts will be consecrated the 11th bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of South Dakota on Saturday, Nov. 2, in Pierre.
The presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church, the Most Rev. Michael Curry, will be in charge. Curry is known as the first African-American to be presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church. And he is sort of famous for being invited to preach at the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, a U.S. citizen, in May 2018 at Windsor Castle outside London.
Curry is presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church, the U.S. arm of the Worldwide Anglican Communion based in England.

More here-


Thursday, October 31, 2019

Low clergy turn up for Bishop Hannington day angers Kadaga

From Uganda-

The speaker of parliament, Rebecca Kadaga has lashed out at some of the Anglican bishops who failed to turn up at the Bishop James Hannington prayer service held in Mayuge district recently.

Kadaga who was presiding over this year’s celebration at the martyrdom site on Tuesday said she was disappointed that the Ugandan clergy hold the day in low esteem, yet the day is highly observed in Canterbury, the headquarters of the Church of England.

“Today is a special day [Bishop Hannington feast day] in Canterbury; October 29,  the Anglican faith hold special prayers in remembrance of Bishop Hannington but people here take this day as a joke yet Bishop Hannington is the first martyr in Uganda,” the visibly irritated Kadaga told worshippers amid cheers.

More here-


Trials adjourned for Anglican priest accused of multiple sexual offences

From Canada-

Trials for an Anglican priest accused of sexual offences against several teen boys will not go ahead in the new year.

Gordon William Dominey, 67, faces a slew of charges related to alleged abuses against boys aged 14 to 16 who were inmates at an Edmonton youth jail in the 1980s. 

But on Tuesday his lawyer brought an adjournment application, citing his client's poor health.
"Mr. Dominey will not be in a position to travel in 2020," defence lawyer Kent Teskey told Court of Queen's Bench Justice Paul Belzil during a brief hearing.

Dominey, who lives in British Columbia, was not in attendance. In 2018, court heard he was undergoing treatment for cancer.

More here-


Special service marks closure

From The Diocese of Chicago-

A very special service, to be held at 4 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 4, will mark the last time that St. Paul's Episcopal Church — the church with the bright red doors located on the corner of Washington and 4th streets in Savanna — will be meeting for worship.

According to Father Bob North, it is the hope of the remaining and former members of St. Paul's, who are preparing a festive reception following the service, that this All Saints' Sunday will be an occasion to honor all those who have attended St. Paul's and served the wider Savanna community throughout the years.

He said a special effort is being made to invite those who have grown up in the church and moved away or remained in Savanna as well as the lay members and clergy of the other churches with whom St. Paul's has worked with over the years in the Savanna Inter Church Community Association.

More here-


Episcopal Woman Priest Says Abortionists are “Saints”

From Patheos--

The National Abortion Federation (NAF) have announced that  The Very Reverend Katherine Hancock Ragsdale is to be their  President and CEO.
“We are pleased to announce that Katherine will be staying at NAF as our President & CEO,” said Sue Carlisle, MD, NAF’s Board Chair. “In her short time at NAF, Katherine has demonstrated her unwavering commitment to serving our members and her great vision for the future of NAF, the NAF Hotline Fund, and NAF Canada. After working with her for the last year, it was clear to the Board that the best person for the job was already leading the organization.”
Ragsdale is an Episcopal priest who has been outspoken about abortion rights, LGBTQ equality, and public policy issues affecting women and families throughout her career. She has testified before the U.S. Congress as well as numerous state legislatures about the importance of abortion access and was a featured speaker at the 2004 March for Women’s Lives in Washington, DC.

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Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Anglican Bishop prays for peace during elections

From Namibia-

As eligible Namibians go to the polls on 27 November 2019 to elect a state president and National Assembly members for the next five years, the Anglican Bishop of Namibia, Right Reverend Luke Lungile Pato, has called for peaceful elections.

From its independence in 1990, Namibia has held orderly and fair elections.
In a statement, Pato enjoined Namibians to uphold that peaceful tradition, which he said was essential for socio-economic development.

“Namibia’s democratic architecture has a pluralistic political system characterized by regular, free, and fair elections. Namibia is also known for its political stability and commitment towards the deepening of democracy, which are strongly anchored in its constitution. We, therefore, encourage all eligible citizens to peacefully vote for the leaders of their choice. This would cement the nation-building project in Namibia,” the Bishop Pato said.

More here-


With plans to pay slavery reparations, two seminaries prompt broader debate

From Seattle-

Among elite U.S. universities, Harvard, Yale, Brown, and Georgetown have all admitted in recent years that at one time they benefited financially from the slave trade. 

But two Protestant seminaries have now gone a step further, saying that in recognition of their own connections to racism they have a Christian duty to pay reparations.

Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, Va., the flagship institution of the U.S. Episcopal Church, announced in September that it has set aside $1.7 million for a reparations fund, given that enslaved persons once worked on its campus and that the school participated in racial segregation even after slavery ended.

Earlier this month, Princeton Theological Seminary in Princeton, N.J., followed suit with an announcement of a $27 million endowed fund for reparations, from which $1.1 million would be dispersed annually.

More here-


Episcopal Church in Minnesota wants Whipple name removed from immigration court building

From Minnesota-

The Episcopal Church in Minnesota is calling for the removal of Bishop Henry Whipple’s name from the Fort Snelling federal courthouse that processes deportation cases — or the eviction of immigration enforcement offices from the building.

The church and other faith groups denounced the immigration court as a “deportation machine” and pointed out that Whipple, the first Episcopal bishop of Minnesota who died in 1901, was known for his advocacy for Native Americans. He sought clemency for 303 Dakota men set to be executed after the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862, though President Abraham Lincoln still approved the killing of 38.

“The activities that go on in this building are a violation not only of the spirit of this sacred land but they are a violation of that name, Bishop Whipple,” said the Rev. Jim Bear Jacobs, director of racial justice at the Minnesota Council of Churches. If the federal government will not evict U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) from the facilities, he added, “we demand that you remove … this good name from this horrible building.”

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Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Church momentarily casts aside 1,000 years of history

From Premier-

The Church of England momentarily omitted a thousand years from its history when a post on the CofE Twitter account claimed: "For 485 years we have been welcoming people to church, and this week we'd love to welcome you too."

It wasn't long before clergy and parishioners who know their history picked up on the error, with Lloyd Llewellen-Jones professor of ancient history at Cardiff University and an Anglian tweeted: "I think that we can trace the roots of the established Church in England to at least 664CE, if not earlier. 485 years? Pah!"

The 664 date refers to the Synod of Whitby, when the kingdom of Northumbria chose to follow Roman rather than Celtic church practices.

Some members of clergy commented an earlier start date to the CofE was accurate. One of Anglican chaplain responded to the tweet: "That's funny, I thought my diocesan cathedral dated to the mid-4th century as a site of Christian worship? Are we simply one of many protestant sects, or Ecclesia Anglican, the Church of England? Please delete this and read the history page of the CofE website."

More here-


Episcopal-Presbyterian representatives meet for Third Round of Bilateral Dialogues

From ENS-

Representatives from The Episcopal Church and the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) met at Glendale, Ohio at the Transfiguration Spirituality Center from October 7-9, 2019 for the Third Round of Bilateral Dialogues (2019-2024). The aim of these dialogues is encouraging closer relationships between congregations of both denominations.

The mandate of this Third Round of Bilateral Dialogue as approved and authorized in 2018 by The Episcopal Church’s General Convention and the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)’s 223rd General Assembly focuses the Third Round on such issues as what would be needed to lead both Churches towards full reconciliation of ordered ministries, the meaning of membership in a shifting American religious context, analyzing ecclesiological identities and differences using historic and socioeconomic lenses, and working with the respective national offices of both churches to develop guidelines and resources for mutual ministries and missions, particularly in areas of collaboration for new worshipping communities and ecumenical congregations.

More here-


Monday, October 28, 2019

Boris pouring petrol on divided Britain, says Anglican primate

From Australia-

The Archbishop of Canterbury, leader of the worldwide Anglican Communion, has rebuked Boris Johnson, warning the British Prime Minister that the use of “inflammatory” language risks pouring “petrol” on Britain’s ­divisions over Brexit.

Justin Welby said Britain had become consumed by “an abusive and binary approach to political decisions” in which Brexit rivals treated their opponents as “my total enemy”.

The archbishop warned that social media meant it had become “extraordinarily dangerous to use careless comments” in a society that was “polarised and volatile”. He was “shocked” by Mr Johnson’s recent dismissal of warnings about extreme language encouraging death threats against politicians as “humbug”.

More here-

Questions linger about church's knowledge of abuse

From Western North Carolina-

Former Episcopal priest Howard White has finally been brought to justice for sexual abuse crimes he admitted to committing in Haywood, but with civil litigation still pending, the story isn’t yet over.
Last week in Haywood County Superior Court, White, 78, pleaded guilty to the sexual abuse of three youths in the mid-1980s and one more in 2004 and was sentenced to 12 years in prison.
The emotional hearing featured not only District Attorney Ashley Welch reading the facts of the cases into record, but also one victim’s powerful statement. Between the two, the details that emerged — details which White agreed were factual — confirmed just how monstrous the crimes committed by the once-respected former rector of Grace Church in the Mountains really were.

More here-


Sunday, October 27, 2019

Fracture in Australia's Anglican church deepens as diocese ALLOWS gay marriages

From Australia-

Newcastle's Anglican diocese has voted to change church rules to allow ministers to bless same-sex marriages and prevent clergy in same-sex marriages from being punished by the church.

More than 200 clergy and lay people voted on the two bills at the diocese's synod on Saturday, the majority in their favour.

One would create a regulation allowing ministers to bless those married 'according to the Marriage Act' - and allow for the blessing of same-sex couples.

No minister would be forced to conduct such a service if it went against their conscience, the bill says.
The other would prevent a clergy member from being disciplined for blessing a same-sex marriage, or for being in a same-sex marriage themselves.

More here-

Old North Church, a cherished symbol, opens up about its link to slavery

From Boston-

The slender white steeple of Old North Church is a cherished symbol of American freedom, the place where two signal lanterns dispatched Paul Revere on his famous 1775 ride to warn the colonists of approaching British troops.

But it’s also a symbol of something else — an American reckoning.

New research shows that Boston slave traders who attended Old North helped build that iconic steeple, and that those parishioners were deeply entwined in a slave-smuggling ring that shipped captive Africans from the British West Indies to notorious Dutch plantations in South America.

Startled by this discovery, the vicar at Old North plans to revamp the tours there, change interpretive signs, and ensure that the 150,000 yearly visitors to this Episcopal church have an opportunity to learn about these newly unearthed connections to Colonial slavery.

More here-

Friday, October 25, 2019

Diocese of Missouri prepares for bishop election

From ENS-

The Episcopal Diocese of Missouri is pleased to announce a slate of three nominees to become its 11th bishop:
A committee made up of lay and clergy members from throughout the diocese conducted a search and discernment process lasting nearly a year. Their slate was presented and was approved by the Standing Committee on Sept. 26.
The nominees are scheduled to visit the diocese Nov. 4-7 for a series of four “walkabouts.” These meet-and-greet sessions will give members an opportunity to ask questions of the nominees, as well as provide time for the candidates to learn more about the diocese.

More here-


Does a 19th century priest haunt St. Mary’s Episcopal Church?

From Kansas City-

Jason Dean, a parishioner at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, wrote of hearing about a controversial priest who died in 1886 and haunts the church to this day. In conjunction What’s Your KC BOO?, our special Halloween edition of What’s Your KC Q focusing on Kansas City’s haunted lore, he asked us to investigate.

We found … intrigue.

St. Mary’s wasn’t St. Mary’s when the church was first established in 1854. St. Luke’s Mission, as it was initially known, had humble beginnings. Lacking a permanent home, its congregation met at a variety of locations near today’s River Market neighborhood. The church prospered and, by 1867, had purchased a lot on the southeast corner of Eighth and Walnut and erected its first permanent home.

More here-


Read more here: https://www.kansascity.com/news/your-kcq/article236604123.html#storylink=cpy

Read more here: https://www.kansascity.com/news/your-kcq/article236604123.html#storylink=cpy

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Newcastle Anglican diocese hoses down talk of a split over same-sex marriage

From Australia-

The Anglican Dean of Newcastle has rejected comments by the Archbishop of Sydney that supporters of same-sex marriage should leave the church, saying differing views deserve respect.

The Very Reverend Katherine Bowyer is supporting the Newcastle diocese's move to bless same-sex marriages, when the issue comes up for debate at a synod in the city's Christ Church Cathedral on Saturday. 

Despite the legalisation of same-sex marriages two years ago, the Anglican Church maintains that marriage is a lifelong union between a man and a woman.

Newcastle's vote follows a similar move in August by the small diocese of Wangaratta in north east Victoria to allow for the blessing of same-sex unions.

Both moves have raised the ire of the conservative Archbishop of Sydney Glenn Davies, who told a Sydney synod on October 14 he "feared for the stability of the church" and described the situation as a "crisis".

More here-