The Episcopal Church drops below two million mark on PB Jefferts Schori’s watch

Oct 12, 2015 by

by Mary Ann Mueller, VOL: When the 2014 stats came out last week, it was no surprise that The Episcopal Church had again lost membership across the board. However, the newest released figures show that there is a dip in most church growth indicators — total membership, ASA, congregations, baptisms, communicants, faith formation pupils, confirmations, and receptions from other Christian denominations. There is a slight uptick in marriages and an increase in funerals. For the first time in 75 years, The Episcopal Church’s total membership dipped below the two million member mark. TEC’s just-released official 2014 stats show worldwide church membership standing at 1,956,042. The last time Episcopal Church membership was below two million was in 1939 when there were 1,996,434 Episcopalians. At the close of World War II, the Episcopal Church had a high water mark of 7,894 congregations; following the war, with the glut of baby boomers,...

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Episcopalians Continue Bleeding Members, Attendance at Alarming Rate

Oct 10, 2015 by

By Jeffrey Walton, Juicy Ecumenism: Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori is leaving office this month after a tumultuous nine years in office that saw significant conflict and numerical decline in the oldline church. Statistics released this week by the denomination’s Office of Diocesan and Congregational Ministries indicate that Jefferts Schori is leaving her successor, Presiding Bishop-elect Michael Curry, with decline that is steepening rather than tapering off. The church’s domestic U.S. membership dropped 2.7 percent from a reported 1,866,758 members in 2013 to 1,817,004 in 2014, a loss of 49,794 persons. Attendance took an even steeper hit, with the average number of Sunday worshipers dropping from 623,691 in 2013 to 600,411 in 2014, a decline of 23,280 persons in the pews, down 3.7 percent. The numbers are significantly worse than 2013, when the church reported a 1.4 percent decline in membership and 2.6 percent decline in average...

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Kenyan Anglican Province calls for exclusion of The Episcopal Church from all Activities in Communion

Oct 8, 2015 by

By David Virtue, VOL: The Provincial Synod of the Anglican Church of Kenya condemned The Episcopal Church at its annual meeting, held at All Saints’ Cathedral, and called for the exclusion of TEC from “all activities in the Communion as a measure of discipline.” Clearly with an eye to the Archbishop of Canterbury’s call for all Primates to attend a special meeting in Canterbury in January to decide the future of the Anglican Communion, the Synod said it continues to disassociate with the Episcopal Church of America — which has now officially sanctioned a liturgy for same sex marriages. “The Anglican Church of Kenya supports the Global South, the Instruments of the Communion, recognizes ACNA Archbishop Foley Beach and calls for the exclusion of TEC from all activities in the Communion,” the resolution said. Archbishop Beach was a plenary speaker at the Anglican Church of Kenya’s ‘Divine Conference’ in...

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Discipline of The Episcopal Church will be first Item on Primates meeting in Canterbury

Oct 6, 2015 by

By David Virtue, VOL: The discipline of The Episcopal Church (and presumably the Anglican Church of Canada) will be the first item on the agenda when the Primates of the Anglican Communion meet in Canterbury in January, VOL has learned. If TEC and the ACoC are disciplined for their departure from the faith and do not leave the meeting, the Global South Primates will not be likely to stay, VOL was told. If they are disciplined, repent and do the right thing and leave, the Global South archbishops will stay on, said the source. A report by the Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Canada Fred Hiltz that ACNA Archbishop Foley Beach had only been invited for one day before the formal meeting gets under way — “as an opportunity for some conversation, in the ultimate hope that we might be able to find a way forward towards reconciliation,”...

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Archbishop Welby, what will you do about it?

Sep 28, 2015 by

By Canon Phil Ashey, AAC: I’m not fond of litigation.  I take our witness to the world very seriously, and the damage to that witness from Christians suing each other is serious. And even though my former profession as a criminal prosecutor put me in the position of litigating daily in the courts, I would much prefer followers of Jesus Christ being able to follow I Corinthians 6 and work out their disagreements within the Church, through church or secular sponsored arbitration services and negotiated settlements. I cannot, however, let the injustice pass that occurred in the oral arguments before the South Carolina Supreme Court, between the Diocese of South Carolina (Bishop Mark Lawrence) and The Episcopal Church (TEC.) There must have been quite a few people watching the live stream—because there apparently wasn’t any room for me to access it when I tried. But attorney Alan Haley (aka...

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Blatant Bias on Display in ECUSA’s South Carolina Case

Sep 25, 2015 by

By A S Haley, Stand Firm: Before the oral arguments yesterday in The Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina v. Episcopal Church in the Supreme Court of South Carolina, your Curmudgeon had heard mention of the fact that one of the five justices who would be hearing the case was active in one of the parishes affiliated with the defendant Episcopal Church in South Carolina. I did not look into the question further until I watched the oral arguments live, and could see the justices as they put their questions to each of the attorneys for the litigants. I took particular note, as I watched, of the attitude and unspoken assumptions behind the questions asked by Justice Kaye Hearn, the newest person elected to that Court. In many cases, it seemed (to this appellate attorney) that her questions were designed more to provide encouragement to ECUSA’s...

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