A task force created by The Episcopal Church to investigate changes within the denomination's ecclesiastical structure has met and released a new report.
"Structural, administrative, and governance change is only one component of the renewal to which the church is being called. Our deepest hope and prayer for our work is that it will be part of, and will continue to catalyze, the renewal that is taking place in many places around the church," reads part of the report from the Task Force for Re-Imagining the Episcopal Church (TREC). met last week at the Institute of Technology in Linthicum, Maryland.
"In order for structural, administrative, and governance reforms to be compelling and to effect meaningful change, they must be grounded in a coherent vision for what those structures are supposed to do in the life of the church," TREC stated in a news release provided by the Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs on Tuesday. more >>
The Most Rev. Justin Welby, the head of the 80 million-strong Anglican Communion, shared in a recent interview about the night in college when he first really felt God's presence and became a believer.
Welby "vaguely assumed there was a God" before the night in question on Oct. 12, 1975, at Trinity College, Cambridge. "But I didn't believe. I wasn't interested at all," he said in an interview with The Telegraph while recalling the path that eventually led him to lead the Church of England.
According to The Telegraph, Welby said he felt "a clear sense of something changing, the presence of something that had not been there before in my life" while praying with a friend. "I said to my friend, 'Please don't tell anyone about this,' because I was desperately embarrassed that this had happened to me, like getting measles,'" he told the publication. more >>
Gay marriage in Britain took one step closer toward becoming a reality on Monday after the House of Lords passed a bill that seeks to redefine marriage.
The bill will now go back to the House of Commons for a review, though the Associated Press reported that is likely to go without a problem, as the House of Commons passed the bill earlier, 390 to 148.
If signed into law, same-sex couples will be allowed to have both civil and religious ceremonies in England and Wales. The Church of England, which has opposed gay marriage and often spoken out against it, will be banned from performing ceremonies. more >>
The Church of England voted on Monday to restart the legislative process to allow female bishops, aiming for the measure to be passed by November 2015.
The church's governing body, known as the General Synod, met in York July 5-9 and ultimately decided to consider new legislation, known as "Option One," which passed 319 to 84, with 22 abstentions.
The General Synod chose "Option One" as there were four other options, and draft legislation is to be produced by November 2013. more >>
The Church of England has issued an apology for its part in past cases of child abuse, saying that its failure to properly deal with such reports was as sinful as the perpetrators of the crimes, but promised that it will look into new ways to stop such abuse in the future.
"We cannot do anything other than own up to our failures. We were wrong," said the Rt. Revd. Paul Butler, Bishop of Southwell and Nottingham, Chair of the Churches National Safeguarding Committee in a statement.
"Our failures were sin just as much as the perpetrators sinned. By failing to listen or act appropriately we condemned survivors to live with the harm when we should have been assisting them into whatever measure of healing might be possible." more >>
Bishops representing the largest Province of The Episcopal Church have written an open letter in which they showed support for those who refused to depart the denomination when the leadership of the South Carolina Diocese decided to leave.
"We commend you for your faith and courage during this trying season. We observed that you are meeting your present difficulties with good fellowship, good creativity and good cheer," stated the Province IV House of Bishops. "We pledge to you our prayers and the prayers of those we serve as we all go forward in faith. And we pledge our support and cooperation to our brother, your Bishop, Charlie von Rosenberg."
Last year, the Diocese of South Carolina decided to leave The Episcopal Church over a mixture of theological differences and the treatment of their bishop, Rev. Mark Lawrence. more >>