Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Brazilian court rules against Recife breakaway diocese

The News Service of the Igreja Episcopal Anglicana do Brasil reports:

Court Orders Return of Churches to the Anglican Diocese of Recife / Episcopal Anglican Church of Brazil”

After a long judicial battle that lasted for a decade, a Brazilian judge has this month finally decided that the actions taken by Bishop Robinson Cavalcanti in creating of the Diocese of Recife – DR, flagrantly violated Brazilian law as well as Canon law, the Doctrine & Discipline of the Episcopal Anglican Church in Brazil (IEAB), resulting in the suspension/demotion, and eventual dismissal of Bishop Robinson from his episcopal authority & legal legitimacy for such actions.

With the sentence, it was decreed that all the actions taken by Bishop Robinson were nullified, and all would be returned to the Anglican Diocese of Recife (DAR), including property, administration & all goods and rights which were illegally usurped, including amongst them five churches with all of their belongings. From now on, all of these parishes are under the direction and supervision of Diocesan Bishop Sebastião Armando…

For some background to this, a Thinking Anglicans report from 2005 may be helpful: Recife: a clarification.

Many of the links from that report are now broken, but the article from the Living Church is still available from the web archive Southern Cone Primate Annexes Brazilian Diocese.

There is also this 2005 report from the Church Times Venables takes Brazilian diocese under his wing. The current issue also has a news report, but this is only available to subscribers.

Anglican Ink has this report by George Conger: Recife loses court battle over church property to the IEAB.

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Tuesday, 30 July 2013 at 7:43am BST | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Anglican Communion

This is good news - same as in most of the American Episcopal Church. Breakaway factions cannot secede and take the property and money with them, that would be a recipe for anarchy.

If there are sincerely held beliefs that compel people to leave their churches and start another, then they must do it the hard way - from scratch by themselves, not stealing from the parent body.

Look at Scottish Presbyterianism to see how it's been done in previous generations.

Posted by: Concerned Anglican on Tuesday, 30 July 2013 at 2:22pm BST

So the courts have ruled against theft - right I see ! Who would have thought it ?

Posted by: Laurence on Wednesday, 31 July 2013 at 1:21am BST

GAFCON leaders must be wondering where the next legal battle will take their sponsored schismatic elements in both North and South America - in terms of their continuance as rebel ex-Anglican faith communities that have lost their property battles with their local Anglican Church bodies.

After the disappointment with the property claims of their ACNA associates in the USA and Canada, GAFCON must by now be wondering how their campaign of encouraging local disaffiliation from mainline Anglican Churches turns out. In many cases, the local civil legal authorities have rejected claims of the dissidents to property that does not belong to them; requiring a radical re-appraisal of their claim to represent 'orthodox Anglicanism' in their local area. And now, the same scenario is being repeated in South America, where one-time Archbishop Venables led the revolution that GAFCON helped to bring about on the Anglican scene in other, more liberal, provinces of the Communion.

This must surely present a challenge to the more conservative provinces of the Communion who will gather at the forthcoming GAFCON rally in Kenya. Whether or not this will signal the end of the Anglican Communion as we have known it - with the more liberal ethos of 'Unity in diversity' - or not, will largely depend on the level-headedness of the participants at the conference. Whatever the outcome at GAFCON, the Communion will never be the same thereafter.

Those of us who remain loyal to the Founding Province of Canterbury, though less in number than the advocates of conservatism in GAFCON, will no doubt continue with the liberalising message of the Gospel, which remains open to ALL people, irrespective of their ethnicity, culture, ethos, gender or sexual orientation. Kyrie eleison!

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Wednesday, 31 July 2013 at 7:52am BST

So much for the propaganda that "the entire Global South stood in opposition to the liberal Anglican churches."

Posted by: Cynthia on Wednesday, 31 July 2013 at 4:41pm BST

"Those of us who remain loyal to the Founding Province of Canterbury...."

I don't think this is a useful way for liberals to define ourselves.

We are loyal to a certain form of Anglicanism, the via media, the Elizabethan Settlement, the three-legged stool, etc.

Sometimes Canterbury is loyal to that form of Anglicanism--but very often it is not. Consider the treatment of the Episcopal Church over the past decade, at Canterbury's hands.

And now the worm has turned in Parliament, and gay marriage is the law of the land. And the CofE, Canterbury included, is left looking rather stupid.

People in other provinces have little reason or need to be "loyal" to Canterbury. Let's leave colonial thinking behind.

Posted by: Jeremy on Saturday, 3 August 2013 at 2:19am BST
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