The head of The Episcopal Church has stated that the declining numbers of her denomination could be the work of the Holy Spirit to create "greater fruitfulness."
TEC Presiding Bishop the Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori made this statement last Thursday in remarks delivered at the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's (ELCA) Churchwide Assembly in Pittsburgh. "Some have judged our smaller numbers as faithlessness but it may actually be the Spirit's way of pruning for greater fruitfulness," said Jefferts Schori.
"If we see ourselves standing at the foot of the cross, any such judgment will be far less important than our response." more >>
A Virginia Anglican congregation that traces its founding to the colonial era has announced that they will file an appeal over a property case to the United States Supreme Court.
The Falls Church Anglican stated earlier this week their intention to file an appeal over whether they or the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia controls the historic Falls Church property. "Through the work of the Holy Spirit, we achieved a broad degree of unity in our decision to bring these matters forward to the Supreme Court, believing that God has uniquely positioned TFCA to do so," reads an email sent out to parishioners on Monday.
"We are advised that the facts of our case are strong and that we are uniquely placed at this time – and perhaps for many years to come – to raise these issues to the U.S. Supreme Court. And each of us wanted to be good stewards of the resources God has given us." more >>
A judge will decide who has the right to the title of Bishop for the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina, which broke away from The Episcopal Church over theological differences.
U.S. District Judge C. Weston Houck heard oral arguments Thursday over the Rev. Charles vonRosenberg's effort to halt the Rev. Mark Lawrence's usage of the title. The Rev. Lawrence presently heads the theologically conservative South Carolina Diocese, which broke away from The Episcopal Church over its support for homosexuality and treatment of Lawrence.
The Rev. vonRosenberg presently heads the Episcopal Church in South Carolina, the name given to those Episcopalians in the Diocese who want to remain with the national church. VonRosenberg has sued Lawrence over usage of the title of bishop, arguing that Lawrence renounced this title when he opted to leave The Episcopal Church in January. more >>
The new Anglican Archbishop of Australia, Bishop Glenn Davies, said that Christians need to show compassion and care to all who are made in God's image, regardless of their ethnic and religious affiliations, referring specifically to asylum seekers.
"What we need to do as a Christian church is call upon the Government to act with compassion and care for people who are made in the image of God, regardless of their ethnic origin, their religious affiliation," Dr. Davies said, according to ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation).
Davies was elected on Tuesday by the 800 member body of the church's synod. He succeeds Peter Jensen, who held the position for 12 years. The Anglican Church of Australia is the country's second largest church with close to 4 million members, second only to the Roman Catholic Church in Australia. more >>
Speaking recently at the United Nation's launch of its "Free & Equal" campaign to promote fair treatment of LGBT persons, former archbishop and South African anti-apartheid activist Desmond Tutu declared that the issue was so close to his heart that he "would refuse to go to a homophobic heaven" and instead choose "the other place."
The 1984 Nobel Peace Prize laureate and former head of the South African Anglican Church and South African Council of Churches made the remarks last Friday, July 26, during the press event in his home country, where same-sex marriage is legal but where views remain antagonistic toward homosexuals.
Calling for greater protections for lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender persons, Archbishop Emeritus Tutu, 81, said, "I would refuse to go to a homophobic heaven. No, I would say sorry, I mean I would much rather go to the other place." more >>
Justin Welby, the new Archbishop of Canterbury, recently shared his testimony with the press and said that not every "true Christian" needs to have a personal conversion experience and that for him, speaking in tongues is routine.
"It's just a routine part of spiritual discipline – you choose to speak and you speak a language that you don't know. It just comes," said Welby in an interview with The Telegraph.
Speaking in tongues, or "glossolalia," is not embraced by all Christians, as some believe that the ability to speak in other human languages or an intelligible prayer language was inspired by the Holy Spirit only among Christians of the first century Church. more >>