Skip to comments.Meeting of Clergy in CT Fails to Produce Mandate for Bishop to Inhibit CT 6 [ECUSA]
Posted on 04/21/2005 4:21:38 PM PDT by sionnsar
Six Episcopal priests threatened with inhibition by their bishop attended a gathering of clergy in the Diocese of Connecticut today. Andrew Smith, Bishop of Connecticut, invited clergy to discuss what he termed an impasse with the six congregations.
While a number of the clergy clearly disagreed with our position, the atmosphere was polite and respectful, said the Rev. Allyn Benedict, rector of Christ Church, Watertown.
Bishop Smith began the meeting by presenting an outline of the history of the conflict in a timeline format as well as describing the current situation from his perspective.
Obviously Bishop Smiths interpretation of events differs greatly from ours, said the Rev. Christopher Leighton, rector of St. Pauls, Darien. His intention for the meeting was to name his charge against us and argue his case in order to gain support from diocesan clergy. Once more, however, his accusation of abandonment of communion remains unfounded, and he has still offered no evidence.
It became clear quickly in the meeting that the assembled clergy had no heart for the bishops proceeding with inhibition. The group urged Bishop Smith to refrain from inhibiting the six clergy, and one priest recommended that all discussion of such action be tabled in order to pursue a positive resolution.
The fact is Bishop Smith received no mandate for his threatened action. He has no support from the primates, the canons of the church nor even the clergy of his diocese, said the Rev. Gil Wilkes, rector of Christ and the Epiphany, East Haven.
While many in the meeting expressed a deep desire to turn back the clock and begin again to discuss Delegated Episcopal Pastoral Oversight (DEPO), the Connecticut Six contend this is simply impossible.
The bishop and Standing Committee of this diocese have charged us publicly with having abandoned the communion of the church. This charge is false, said Father Benedict. How can we talk about DEPO with an unjust verdict hanging over our heads?
If we could miraculously turn the clock back, we would need to return to July 2003 before the Episcopal Church USA (ECUSA) abandoned Scripture and the faith and order of Anglicanism, said Father Leighton. Unless ECUSA repents and returns to the apostolic faith, we cannot go back.
Following this meeting we are left wondering every day if letters of inhibition will arrive. The stress on us, our families, our congregations and beyond is enormous, and the hope of resolution grows more complex with each moment, he continued.
The Bishops next step should be to fire all of the priests in the Diocese. None of them apparently are willing to show unwavering loyalty and submission to him.
You're welcome. I'm still trying to figure it out too. It is different from what our bishop described, which seems rather closer to Orthodoxy.
Well, we'll see what Bishop Smith does with that input.
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