Updated Wednesday evening
Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori has advised Southern Cone Presiding Bishop Gregory J. Venables in an April 29 letter that his planned May 2-3 visit to address a special convocation of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth “with the expressed purpose of describing removal to the Province of the Southern Cone is an unwarranted invasion of, and meddling in, the internal affairs of this Province.”
The ENS report contains the full text of her letter. It also goes on to report on the formation of Steering Committee North Texas Episcopalians. You can read more about that body at this post by Katie Sherrod at Desert’s Child.
Wednesday evening update
The Bishop of Fort Worth has published a letter written in response to the Presiding Bishop’s letter. It is contained in this PDF file or there is an html copy here. He also wrote a blog comment about the letter which is reproduced here.
Following up on the report above concerning Steering Committee North Texas Episcopalians, there is this report in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram Episcopal group against Fort Worth diocese’s secession which includes this paragraph:
Fort Worth Diocese Bishop Jack Iker said in a statement Tuesday that the steering committee is “a self-selected vigilante group whose only stated purpose is ‘to remain in The Episcopal Church’ no matter what — and regardless of what TEC believes or practices. They espouse a blind institutional loyalty that borders on institutional idolatry.”
Then, there is this from the Living Church Presiding Bishop in Dallas: “Have You Been Watching San Joaquin?” which includes the following:
Clergy and laity from the Diocese of Fort Worth comprised a little less than half of those attending the reception. Their questions dominated, with some pleading with the Presiding Bishop for “help to get us out of the wilderness we now find ourselves in.” Fort Worth is one of several dioceses that are likely to consider leaving The Episcopal Church when their conventions are held this fall.
Bishop Jefferts Schori assured her questioners that a plan similar to the one employed in San Joaquin has already been prepared. When the Fort Worth delegation declared that they have been forgotten in this battle, the Presiding Bishop replied, “Have you been watching San Joaquin? They were not forgotten and now show dynamic signs of new life. You will not be forgotten, either.”
Throughout much of the question-and-answer session retired Bishop Sam B. Hulsey of Northwest Texas stood in the back of the parish hall. Last January Bishop Hulsey held an organizational meeting for clergy from the Diocese of Fort Worth, offering continuing care to those who wish to remain with The Episcopal Church, an action to which Bishop Jack Leo Iker of Fort Worth objected. Since then Bishop Hulsey has visited a handful of Fort Worth congregations.
See also Katie Sherrod’s blog comments here.
Meanwhile, Mark Harris reports in detail on The Plans of Fort Worth as revealed in the documents he has made available here, which comprise a draft of “The Fort Worth Plan” and of an associated “Canon 41”.