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Another Day, Another Parish [ECUSA]
Midwest Conservative Journal ^ | 11/28/2005 | Christopher Johnson

Posted on 11/29/2005 8:53:31 AM PST by sionnsar

The sad fact is that stories like this aren't news anymore:

The Episcopal Church of the Nativity has seen some dark days in recent years, members said, but none more dark than the day this week six of seven members of the Vestry resigned from duties to the church. Some have even resigned from the church.

The split came after nearly four years without a permanent priest for the parish. However, that is not the only reason members say they have left their church. Opposing views on the doctrine of the church have left some members feeling that the church no longer represents them.

Louis Browning, whose family has been members of the church since the 1920s, resigned Monday during a meeting held at Church of the Nativity by Bishop Stacy Sauls.

The meeting was held to discuss the Vestry’s decision to protect, by court order, property of the church. Members formed a corporation, Church of the Nativity, Inc., then transferred property from the Church of the Nativity to the corporation. No money was exchanged. According to court documents, the purpose of the transaction was to place the title of property in the name of a second party.

Mattingly spoke with Sauls about the transaction, with which Sauls disagreed. According to Mattingly, the two men talked and agreed that a meeting of the church should be held to discuss the issue. Mattingly said he wanted a few days to inform the Vestry of the meeting. However, he said a letter went out to the congregation the day Mattingly met with Sauls to announce the event.

Although there was some fears expressed in a letter from Sauls to the congregation that a new church would be formed, Browning and Mattingly both said that was never the intention of the corporation.

I suppose that if there's still an institution called the Episcopal Church of the United States of America when all this shakes out, there will be news stories aplenty about how ECUSA "weathered the storm."  They'll tell us happy and inclusive and non-judgmental ECUSA parishes are and we'll hear from plenty of ex-Catholics, ex-Baptists and ex-whatever elses who joined ECUSA parishes.  Perhaps ECUSA will even snag a celebrity airhead or two who wants to get "spiritual." 

And in ECUSA parishes from one end of this country to the other, the old joke will play itself out once again.  Millions(or thousands, depending) of Episcopalians will look around them, consider the vastly-increased amounts of money their dioceses will ask them for and all the innovations ECUSA will come up with once it "weathers" Hurricane Robinson and they'll think to themselves, "If they change just one more thing about this church..."

TOPICS: Mainline Protestant
KEYWORDS: ecusa; schism

1 posted on 11/29/2005 8:53:33 AM PST by sionnsar
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To: ahadams2; Condor 63; Fractal Trader; Zero Sum; anselmcantuar; Agrarian; coffeecup; Paridel; ...
Traditional Anglican ping, continued in memory of its founder Arlin Adams.

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Speak the truth in love. Eph 4:15

2 posted on 11/29/2005 8:54:57 AM PST by sionnsar (†† || (To Libs:) You are failing to celebrate MY diversity! || Iran Azad)
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To: sionnsar

How do you have a viable parish without a minister for four years?

3 posted on 11/29/2005 12:12:33 PM PST by ken5050 (Ann Coulter needs to have children ASAP to pass on her gene pool....any volunteers?)
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To: ken5050

With difficulty. But we know little of their situation with supply priests, deacons etc.

4 posted on 11/29/2005 1:21:17 PM PST by sionnsar (†† || (To Libs:) You are failing to celebrate MY diversity! || Iran Azad)
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To: ken5050

Supply priests, interim pastors, etc. My parish has not had a rector for about 12 months. There are a pool of priests in the Diocese that you can pay to come in on Sundays to run the services. Some are retired, some have secular careers, some have non-parish based ministries (such as the priest that runs the Cathedral Shelter in Chicago).

Of course, that means that there is no full time or part time pastor present to handle the pastoral needs of the parishioners. Lay ministers handle some of this, and some of the supply priests that are local handle some of this. It's not the best solution, but you can keep going if your parish is determined to do so.

5 posted on 11/29/2005 1:29:20 PM PST by RonF
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To: RonF; sionnsar

I'm familar with the methodology. We endured a six months interim run of assorted types while going through our last search some years back..But my question was morephilosophical..the minister is the soul, the backbone of the parish..OTOH..perhaps it speaks more to the spirituality of the laity that kept it going..

6 posted on 11/29/2005 3:54:17 PM PST by ken5050 (Ann Coulter needs to have children ASAP to pass on her gene pool....any volunteers?)
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To: ken5050

If you have a liberal bishop who has to approve the calling, 4 years might be a short time.

7 posted on 11/30/2005 6:21:31 AM PST by Raycpa
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