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ZZZZZZ... [Florida Episcopal parishes appeal to the Panel of Reference]
Midwest Conservative Journal ^ | 8/22/2005 | Christopher Johnson

Posted on 08/22/2005 5:51:19 PM PDT by sionnsar

Six Florida Episcopal parishes appeal to the Panel of Reference:

Six Northeast Florida Episcopal congregations, upset that their bishop has not opposed the consecration of an openly gay bishop in New Hampshire, have asked the archbishop of Canterbury to help them find a new leader.

The letter to the spiritual leader of the worldwide Anglican Community informed him they were ’’in serious theological dispute’’ with Bishop John Howard and said it was impossible to remain under his leadership within the Jacksonville-based Diocese of Florida.

The Rev. Sam Pascoe, rector at Grace Church in Orange Park, said the churches believe that getting another bishop would allow them to conduct their ministries ``with a clean conscience.’’

Howard rejected last week a request from the congregations that he temporarily assign another bishop saying it amounted to a ’’divorce’’ between the churches and the diocese.

The Diocese blew it off with this dig.

On Wednesday, church officials regretted that the congregations had appealed to the archbishop of Canterbury.

’’It’s disappointing that political tactics are being used -- real disappointing,’’ said the Rev. Canon Kurt Dunkle, the bishop’s chief of staff.

Dunkle added that even if the archbishop made a ruling on the appeal, it would amount to a suggestion because he cannot dictate policies to Howard or other bishops.

Hmmm.  ECUSA considers it "political tactics" for Anglican parishes to do something the Anglican world says they can do.  That's good to know. 

I'm going out on a limb here.  The Panel of Reference will hear this appeal and get back to the six churches in a year and a half or so with a proposal that splits the difference.  For example, the six can have a bishop of their choice but they can only have him for a year and then they have to start talking to Howard again.  Howard will either claim victory or reject the proposal altogether since the Panel "cannot dictate policies to Howard or other bishops" and the whole thing will end up in court.

The longer you put things like this off, the harder they become.  Go DEPO and you might

get another pointy-hat to do your confirmations for a while(or you might not) but Howard will still be your bishop who can send the new guy home pretty much any time he wants.  So DEPO's not an option and Howard's not going to budge.  Which leaves, well, walking away from the real estate right now.  But if you want to keep the Anglican connection, I'm sure that AMiA would love to hear from you.

TOPICS: Mainline Protestant
[I will simply note the Continuing options, to be found in the site in my tagline. --sionnsar]
1 posted on 08/22/2005 5:51:19 PM PDT by sionnsar
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