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Monday
Mar292010

TEC threatens South Carolina

Among the resolutions to be considered at the Diocese of South Carolina’s convention on March 26 are a series that affirm the diocese’s “legal and ecclesiastical authority as a sovereign diocese” within The Episcopal Church (TEC) and declare that the Presiding Bishop has no authority in the diocese. It demands she stop retaining legal council in South Carolina. A proposed canonical revision gives the diocesan bishop the authority to “provide a generous pastoral response to parishes in conflict” with the diocese or Province. Another resolution promises “not to swerve in our belief that… Jesus came into the world to save the lost….” 

In the past, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori has consistently coerced dioceses to litigate departing parishes. Synod was postponed when Bishop Mark Lawrence revealed that the presiding bishop’s office was apparently orchestrating a legal attack against him and the diocese for his failure to prosecute departing parishes.

The diocese has also posted all the letters from TEC. The letters can only portend legal action – even though the diocese is still within TEC. Legal expert A.S. Haley speculates that the Presiding Bishop intends to charge Bishop Lawrence with “abandonment” and depose him if he does not pursue legal action against parishes departing his diocese.

--Marilyn Jacobson, plus StandFirm 

Sunday
Feb282010

Haitian bishop refuses to evacuate

REJECTING OFFERS to evacuate him from Port-au-Prince, Episcopal Diocese of Haiti Bishop Jean-Zaché Duracin said on Jan. 18, "No, I will stay with my people.” Duracin, who was made homeless by the quake, is helping care for 3,000 other homeless victims in a tent city in downtown Port-au-Prince.

The Jan. 12 quake destroyed much of the infrastructure of the diocese including Cathédrale Sainte Trinité (Holy Trinity Cathedral) and its school, the diocesan offices, the Convent of Sainte Marguerite, the College Saint Pierre and the bishop’s home. At least four of the diocese's 254 schools, ranging from pre-schools to a university and seminary, were destroyed. 

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