Friday, 12 June 2009

California church properties returned

ENS reports: California appellate court rules La Crescenta property belongs to Los Angeles diocese.

California appellate court’s June 9 ruling was the latest in a series of recent developments that return disputed church properties to three California Episcopal dioceses.

On June 9, the San Diego-based Fourth District Court of Appeal ruled unanimously that the Diocese of Los Angeles is legal owner of property currently occupied by St. Luke’s Anglican Church. The congregation had cited theological differences when severing ties to the Episcopal Church (TEC) in 2006 and realigning with an Anglican diocese in Uganda.

In unrelated agreements, displaced Episcopalians will return July 1 to two other disputed properties, St. John’s Church in Petaluma, in the Diocese of Northern California and St. Paul’s Church in Modesto in the Diocese of San Joaquin…

See also news reports:

Dispute over old church resolved
Breakaway Petaluma congregation returns building to Episcopal Church

and

Church ruling upheld
Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles wins another property battle

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Friday, 12 June 2009 at 2:22pm BST | TrackBack
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Categorised as: ECUSA
Comments

It is always good to see right prevail.

It always seemed to me, that the Church must get its property back, from those who had left.

Posted by: Rev L Roberts on Friday, 12 June 2009 at 2:47pm BST

A victory for the good guys! Hooray! Let the Rebellion chew on that one for a while, the bunch of thieves.

Posted by: pete on Friday, 12 June 2009 at 3:27pm BST

Bishops Orombi and Akinola (and soon Venables, Schofield, Iker, Duncan), have been striking out time-after-time at court, with their ¨poaching TEC¨ property/endowment antics...these costly capers only make them appear even more irresponsible when considering the rampant corruption at all levels of society in some of their HOME PROVINCES at The Anglican Communion.

Bishop Akinola/Nigeria and CANA and his HOB´s were recently ¨called to task¨ for improper religious leadership by Nigerian Senate President David Mark...it seems all is not spiritually ¨well¨ in Gafconlandia:

¨SENATE President David Mark, at a synod of the Bishops of Anglican Communion held in Kaduna recently, accused religious leaders in Nigeria of not living by the tenets of their teachings, lamenting that many of their actions fuel corruption and other social vices.
According to the nation’s number three man, the widespread corruption being witnessed in the country would not have existed if the religious leaders were sincere in their teachings by practicing what they preach as well as following the teachings and matching their words with their actions.¨

http://www.triumphnewspapers.com/mark1162009.html

Posted by: Leonardo Ricardo on Friday, 12 June 2009 at 4:23pm BST

Now let us hope and pray the Canadians and others do the right thing and return properties to the parish rather than deed it to one particular congregation which - as we know- changes from year to year while the parish endures - alleluia

Posted by: ettu on Friday, 12 June 2009 at 4:27pm BST

Only time will tell if the Episcopal Church is able to reproduce thriving communities in these empty shells where families of believers have gathered for so long. The TEC mantra that "people leave the church, but buildings don't" is really not a good long-term strategy and certainly not something to celebrate. People ARE leaving, with and without buildings. Congratulations.

Posted by: SanDiegoAnglicans on Friday, 12 June 2009 at 5:31pm BST

Kind of a relief to have this other shoe drop. I doubt that anybody in California seriously expected any other type of ruling; but unanimous appeal court rulings strengthen how the appeal court weighed the issues, determined the law applies to the case(s).

Guess? Now expect realignment folks nearer to the court ruling to suddenly discover that they were not all that interested in property and stuff, anyways. I predict lots of revisionist realignment believer history telling; and lots of high language about getting on with realigned conservative mission, witness, and so forth.

Who was it, that got all mucked up in those property issues in the first place, detracting us from gospel living? Gee, oh yes. Must have been those liberals. Oh yes, that's why we had to leave, because they are just the wrong sort to put property and worldly matters above following Jesus of Nazareth.

Go figure, Lord have mercy.

Posted by: drdanfee on Friday, 12 June 2009 at 7:58pm BST

San Diego Anglicans wrote:
"The TEC mantra that "people leave the church, but buildings don't" is really not a good long-term strategy and certainly not something to celebrate. People ARE leaving, with and without buildings. Congratulations."

Oh, San Diego, would you people get over yourselves!!? You tried to steal something that didn't belong to you, and you got caught and busted for it. If you don't like what's happening in TEC, either work within the system to change it, or do the honorable thing and just leave. Trying to steal property and blow up TEC doesn't sound like a good long-term strategy either. Thanks for all the headaches you've caused the rest of us.

Posted by: pete on Saturday, 13 June 2009 at 4:12pm BST

Sorry, pete, but I would agree with SanDiegoAnglicans on this one. I'm not and never have been a member of the Episcopalian Church, but watching this from a distance it does not seem like a cause for rejoicing. Disunity is one of the greatest sins of modern Christians, and getting your land back from a congregation that left sounds like a pyrrhic victory to me. Great, you got the land back, but the more important issue is that a large group of Christians have left your church. Unfortunately, in the area I live, most of the people that have left the local Episcopalian church now don't go to church at all. I'm not sure why anyone would be happy about this kind of outcome. What good is getting the land back if there is no one to attend?

Posted by: Benjamin Handelman on Saturday, 13 June 2009 at 7:19pm BST

TBTG, and God grant us reconciliation, in Your time...

Posted by: JCF on Saturday, 13 June 2009 at 7:28pm BST

Yes, I too am weary of conservative San Diego mantras. This is the same county whose citizens loudly preached they were for straight marriage only, but not against anybody else or anything else in particular; then denied permission for a married couple to sit together in a ho-hum bureaucratic interview (probably with county officials?) though the couple's legal marriage had just been reaffirmed by the state supreme court ruling.

Now, the numbers mantra?

Yeah, folks are leaving, and folks are changing churches, or even changing faiths in some instances. Changing is very deeply American. In high transition times, seeker believers intensify their seeking across all boundaries. No faith stone can be left unturned in a reassessment of the faith ecologies, health and otherwise. Other believers seek and find closed safety/shelter, usually inside institutions which appear rigid and strong and clear about everything, to an Nnth degree. USA has always had both streams of believers and faith communities. New England Puritans were fleeing persecution in Europe, only to persecute the non-Puritans once the colony was established well enough to survive.

Folks are arriving, too. Folks coming and going all over the planet, to an extent formerly unseen in world history. Hard to simplify and tilt all that change.

Meanwhile, our national USA demographic is shifting to older citizens, massively, again to a degree not seen before, ever in USA history.

For one thing, life expectancy used to be about an average of 40-45 years, with very high death rates in infancy and childhood.

If we are counting voters and exiting feet; I guess the largest group of leave-takers is among the young adults - who by a very long shot think of spirituality and religion as separate deals, which can possibly overlap in instances of rare integrity and meaning. Even the Barna research group gets it.

TEC has never been about competing with evangelical USA mega-churches like Rick Warren at Saddleback. As the national phenom of USA religion overall trends for the moment towards dumbing down and over-simplifying every important dimension of faith - TEC and other faith groups may function as NT Jesus leaven.

Posted by: drdanfee on Saturday, 13 June 2009 at 8:34pm BST

One wants to shout out to some conservatives "Get a life!" They are still obsessed with the "evils" of TEC as they choose to define them - however saying that on a conservative blog would just encourage their excesses and I would prefer to let their rantings die a natural death rather than prolong the agony with seemingly useless "dialogue" regards to all

Posted by: ettu on Saturday, 13 June 2009 at 8:58pm BST

I would rather be part of a small community that truly lives the Gospel than of a large one that talks a good game...

Posted by: Pat O'Neill on Sunday, 14 June 2009 at 1:10am BST

Benjamin Handelman wrote:
Unfortunately, in the area I live, most of the people that have left the local Episcopalian church now don't go to church at all. I'm not sure why anyone would be happy about this kind of outcome.

I don't think anyone is happy about this outcome. But I must wonder: if people left the Episcopal Church and now don't go to church at all, what kind of faith did they have to start with? In any case, it is clearly the task of the Episcopal Church to find positive ways of winning these folks back... and welcoming new people into the Church.

Posted by: WilliamK on Sunday, 14 June 2009 at 3:00am BST

I suspect that revolution will not be so appealing when it means holding services in a strip mall between a liquor store and a pawn shop.

Posted by: JPM on Sunday, 14 June 2009 at 3:54am BST

"if people left the Episcopal Church and now don't go to church at all, what kind of faith did they have to start with?"

It is entirely possible that their faith is still as lively as before, they've just had it with religion and the endless posturing, the attempts to control what God likes and doesn't like, the determination to decide who's in and who's out.

With everything else that goes on in the world, they might even be a teeny weeny bit bored with the never ending obsession about sex.

Church = faith, no church = no faith is a fallacy.

Posted by: Erika Baker on Sunday, 14 June 2009 at 12:03pm BST

Any thoughts on how long it will take for the conservatives to start splitting off from one another? Or to make an analogy with the French reign of terror for the revolution to start eating it's own children.. Sad .. very sad...

Posted by: ettu on Sunday, 14 June 2009 at 12:09pm BST

>>>Any thoughts on how long it will take for the conservatives to start splitting off from one another?

It's already happened. Jack Iker announced months ago that he is in "impaired communion" with Pittsburgh, since Duncan ordains women.

Posted by: JPM on Sunday, 14 June 2009 at 7:37pm BST

Furthermore Bishop Iker was in Walsingham recently praying to the Virgin Mary. Yet he is going to sign a constitution that affirms the 39 articles in their " literal and historical meaning. "

Posted by: Robert Ian Williams on Tuesday, 16 June 2009 at 6:58am BST

Robert, you say that Bishop Iker was at the Shrine of Our Lady at Walsingham recently. Was that the Anglican or the Roman shrine do you know? The answer is rather important to me.

Father Ron


Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Tuesday, 16 June 2009 at 2:55pm BST

Rev Ron Smith:

Bishop Iker was at the Anglican Shrine in Walsingham. He gave Benediction at the closing liturgy of the National Pilgrimage.

Posted by: Mark Wharton on Tuesday, 16 June 2009 at 5:14pm BST

Interesting that Mr. Iker would portray himself as an active bishop in the Anglican Communion, as he is neither.

Posted by: choir on Tuesday, 16 June 2009 at 8:30pm BST

Fr Ron: there are photos of the National Pilgrimage on the Walsingham Anglican Shrine website, showing Bishop Iker together with the English flying bishops, My Lord of Gibraltar and the former Bishop of Horsham, whose recent move to become the Administrator followed on rather swiftly from all the fuss about his sexuality in the press.

Posted by: Fr Mark on Tuesday, 16 June 2009 at 9:11pm BST

JPM: "not be so appealing when it means holding services in a strip mall between a liquor store and a pawn shop."

Speaking as the manager of a liquor store, I would be seriously concerned about the spiritual corruption seeping through the walls onto my premises!

Posted by: Oriscus on Friday, 19 June 2009 at 5:25pm BST

"I suspect that revolution will not be so appealing when it means holding services in a strip mall between a liquor store and a pawn shop"

I also suspect a certain deafness to the possibility that this is precisely where God is calling them to minister. God's got an odd way of doing that. Our parish used to have HUGE issues with the idea of female servers. That was twenty years ago. But twenty years of outmigration and aging have meant that we simp-ly can't maintain the fiction that we have the right to pick and choose the people God sends us to serve, so now there isn't a peep. I noticed a few weeks ago, all seven servers were girls. No-one said 'Boo". It's as though twenty years ago, God said, "Fine. I'll show you", and now He's saying, "There now, take that! See, seven girls in the Sanctuary, and the sky is just as high as it ever was. So, what was all the fuss about? And why can't you learn?"

Posted by: Ford Elms on Monday, 22 June 2009 at 4:43pm BST
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