Comments: Responses to ACNA documents

On the issue of suits engaging vestry members. I would like some clarification. If me memory serves in at least several of the cases, vestry members were originally named and subsequently removed as respondents/defendents. So, in that case both the AAC and Simon are right, and wrong. In the US, it is common practice to name everybody who could possibly be involved at the outset in a complaint and sort who or what entities should really be involved in the lawsuit later. Also, in the US, most organizations indemnify their board members to protect them in case they are so named. In the case of the TEC lawsuits, if my memory is correct, there were issues regarding the role of vestry members as fiduciaries. This could have ramifications for individual liability? Suing the vestry members, at the outset may have been more just s.o.p. for the U.S. legal system? I. e., one just sues the it who really did it, the guy who might have done it and the kitchen sink in the real contingency that it might have done it or was in the room when it was done. Would appreciate someone with more skills in the U.S. system to chime in here.

Posted by EmilyH at Friday, 5 February 2010 at 6:58pm GMT

Heavens!

Simon who is not a lawyer and not an American and not a member of TEC asks for help from someone who is a lawyer in the US for TEC!

How very sinister - asking someone who knows more than one does for advice. Give me a break.

Thank you again, Simon, for a well done paper.

Posted by Cynthia Gilliatt at Friday, 5 February 2010 at 7:22pm GMT

I posted the following reply to the Anglican Network item. We'll see how long it stays.

Your note is a trifle, shall we call it disingenuous?

Canon Perry was responding to a libelous document being circulated to members of the General Synod of the Church of England which falsely claimed that clergy had been deposed in the Anglican Church of Canada. Their canonical status should they join some new denomination (as is the case with Bishops Harvey, Harding and Ferris) is not relevant to the issue. Your new protestant denomination is welcome to recognize them as Bishops, as Pooh-Bahs as Flying Spaghetti Monsters as you see fit. The only issue Canon Perry is addressing is whether or not they had been deposed as bishops from the Anglican Church of Canada.

The fact remains (however much some may wish to misrepresent it) that these three gentlemen, and the assorted former ACoC priests who have joined them in “ACNA” are no longer bishops, priests or deacons OF THE ANGLICAN CHURCH OF CANADA and that none of them were deposed by the Anglican Church of Canada.

Save your indignation for a real issue instead of trying to pretend that fact is fiction.

Posted by Malcolm+ at Friday, 5 February 2010 at 7:27pm GMT

"3. Neither Bishop Jack Iker nor any of the other bishops removed by TEC under the Renunciation of Ministry canons ever voluntarily resigned their Holy Orders or ministry as a bishop." - A.A.C. -

They may not have officially resigned from TEC. However, by their schismatic action they have rendered themselves unemployable by TEC, whose specific canons, by their erratic behaviour, they have breeched. This is what may be called an *involuntary* resignation of their of their licences to act as priests or bishops in TEC.

Whatever jurisdiction they have been given (or have arrogated to themsevles) in the ministry of the Christian Church is no longer viable in TEC - not only because of TEC's direct action, but also a a result of their own precipitate action in declaring themselves virtually 'out of Communion' with TEC.

Their priestly and/or episcopal orders are still valid - but not in the service of TEC.

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Friday, 5 February 2010 at 10:34pm GMT

Malcolm,

"We'll see how long it stays."

Now, now, we don't censor comments.

Speaking of which, I posted a comment on your blog and it hasn't appeared yet!

Posted by David at Saturday, 6 February 2010 at 2:44am GMT

Keep repeating the lies and people might think they're true, American "anglican" Council!

Next paper from AAC:

"Our Lies, Our Heritage."

Posted by MarkBrunson at Saturday, 6 February 2010 at 4:51am GMT

In legal actions where dissidents have tried to take parish property with them as they exit The Episcopal Church, former vestry members are typically named as defendants since they are the persons who possess or are unlawfully using Episcopal parish property for worship of another denomination. Canon law provides that the parish itself can not leave The Episcopal Church. It is the former vestry, therefore, who must be named as defendants in order for the court to have jurisdiction to resolve the controversy and award possession in favor of those who seek it and against those who hold it. While practice and procedure can vary from state to state, these legal actions usually take the form of a declaratory judgment action where the court is asked to declare ownership rights and to direct that the parish property be returned to the control of The Episcopal Church. Most often no damage claims are raised or adjudicated. In appropriate cases, such as where parish property has been concealed, moved out of the jurisdication, or taken for personal gain, other relief may be sought against those individuals responsible--usually former rectors, vestry or officers of the parish. In such cases those persons may have breached their fiduciary duties and, if so, the law provides a remedy. The ACC claim that former vestry are typically sued is accurate. The ACC claims that these former vestry persons are not necessary parties to legal actions or that they are unreasonably harmed by the lawsuits is silly. When you actively participate in the removal of property from the possession or control of another who claims ownership rights, how can you complain when the alleged owner asks the court to adjudicate the rights of those involved?

Posted by Robert at Saturday, 6 February 2010 at 2:14pm GMT

David, I notice that my comment over there has sparked a discussion. Good on you for not following the practice of some other conservative blogs. There's one that will even delete innocuous comments if posted by perceived enemies.

Simple Massing Priest uses an approval process because I was getting comments that might best be described as sexually explicit invective. Those I delete. Simply disagreeing with me - even passionately - will still got you posted. I expect to be approving the comments shortly.

Posted by Malcolm+ at Saturday, 6 February 2010 at 3:05pm GMT

'over there'

Sorry but over where ?

Posted by Rev L Roberts at Sunday, 7 February 2010 at 10:14pm GMT

Malcolm,

"Good on you for not following the practice of some other conservative blogs."

Thanks; we are tolerant and inclusive :-)

Posted by David at Sunday, 7 February 2010 at 10:27pm GMT

"Thanks; we are tolerant and inclusive :-)"

They even include *me* - and I claim to be neither tolerant nor inclusive, just progressive and right-minded! :D

Posted by MarkBrunson at Tuesday, 9 February 2010 at 4:39am GMT
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