Cancelled: Tonight's Diocesan Night at the Riverdogs
Written by SCDiosAdministrator
At this time of grief and mourning for our brothers and sisters who lost their lives in the shooting at Emanuel AME, and to allow everyone to attend memorial services tonight, Bishop Lawrence has cancelled the Diocesan Night at the Riverdogs. We have rescheduled that outing for August 21. If you purchased tickets for the event see a notice here.
O God, you have made of one blood all the peoples and races of the earth, and sent your blessed Son to preach peace to those who are far off and those who are near: Grant to those who have lost love ones your hope, comfort and peace; grant to those members of Emmanuel AME Church a sense of your presence; look with compassion on the whole human family here in Charleston and across our nation; show us how to respond to one another’s hurt and suffering; shed abroad your Spirit on those who have lost faith, hope and trust in You and one another; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that in your good time all peoples and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Bishop Lawrence Calls for Prayer in Wake of Mass Shooting; Services Today
Written by The Rt. Rev. Mark J. Lawrence
The following message from the Rt. Rev. Mark J. Lawrence, XIV Bishop of South Carolina, was sent to the Diocese of South Carolia June 18, 2015.
Dear Friends in Christ,
I have spoken to the Rev. Jimmy Gallant, one of our black clergyman and a leader in the Charleston community, earlier this morning in the wake of the horrific shooting at Emmanuel AME Church last evening. Unconfirmed reports have nine dead from the shootings including the pastor, the Rev. Clementa Pinckney. The African American community in Charleston is crushed. The larger community staggers wondering how to respond. Many priests and lay persons in the diocese and elsewhere have contacted me this morning desiring some way to meaningfully respond.
Frankly, our hearts are crushed by this violent act. Our minds reeling as we consider the pain of our brothers and sisters who have lost loved ones—mothers and fathers, children and grandchildren, family and friends—as well as for those who have lost faith and hope from such a senseless act of hatred and insanity. My heart and thoughts also reach out to all our brothers and sisters in Christ in this diocese, especially those of African American descent, as we grieve in the aftermath of this horrific event and from whatever root causes lie beneath it.
I know some of the priests and lay persons from the diocese are planning to attend the prayer service at Morris Brown AME Church today at noon. I too am planning to attend. I humbly request all the clergy and laity in the area attending the prayer service to join me at the Cathedral afterwards at 2 p.m. We shall seek God’s face on how he will have us respond as a diocese, as congregations, and as individual members of the Body of Christ—ambassadors of reconciliation—in this broken and fallen world for which His Son our Savior, Jesus Christ, has died that He might redeem.
Prayer for all involved would seem the primary thing we can offer at this point:
For Emmanuel AME Their members The injured The families and friends of those killed The community, as it responds to this tragedy Law enforcement, for a speedy apprehension of the person responsible Protection from those who would attempt to exploit this crisis Restraint of further violence in response For the Church... to be a witness in the midst of this tragedy... to redeem it
O God, you have made of one blood all the peoples and races of the earth, and sent your blessed Son to preach peace to those who are far off and those who are near: Grant to those who have lost loved ones your hope, comfort and peace; grant to those members of Emmanuel AME Church a sense of your presence; look with compassion on the whole human family here in Charleston and across our nation; show us how to respond to one another’s hurt and suffering; shed abroad your Spirit on those who have lost faith, hope and trust in You and one another; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that in your good time all peoples and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Diocese of South Carolina Files Reply Brief with the South Carolina Supreme Court
Written by SCDiosAdministrator
The Diocese of South Carolina disassociated with The Episcopal Church in complete accord with South Carolina law and Constitutional precedent.
CHARLESTON, SC, JUNE 16, 2015 – After the Episcopal Church publicly announced an illegitimate settlement offer to parishes of the Diocese of South Carolina, the Diocese filed its brief responding to the denomination’s appeal documents.
The Diocese of South Carolina filed its brief with the South Carolina Supreme Court. The Diocese’s brief supports the Feb. 3 decision by Judge Diane Goodstein, who ruled that the Diocese, its trustees and parishes are "the sole owners of their real, personal and intellectual properties" and that TEC has "no legal, equitable or beneficial interest" in any properties of the Diocese.
TEC had appealed the ruling and the state Supreme Court agreed to consider the appeal. The Diocese’s brief supports Judge Goodstein’s ruling on the basis of state and federal precedent, as well as established church history.
After first filing its own appeal brief with the State Supreme Court , TEC sent parishes in the Diocese letters offering to stop its legal action if – in exchange – the Diocese would give up the symbols, trademarks, assets and property protected by Judge Goodstein’s decision. Recognizing this as a way to try and create dissension among Diocesan churches, distract attorneys and as a publicity ploy, the illegitimate offer was turned down.
Churches in Diocese of South Carolina reject Episcopal Church’s ‘Spurious’ Offer to Settle
Recognizing the disingenuous nature of the settlement offer, the parishes of the Diocese of South Carolina unanimously reject the proposal.
CHARLESTON, SC, JUNE 15, 2015 –
Statement from The Rev. Jim Lewis, Canon to Bishop Mark Lawrence, Bishop of the Diocese of South Carolina
On June 3rd, Mr. Tom Tisdale, legal counsel for The Episcopal Church in South Carolina, sent letters to attorneys representing all Diocese of South Carolina churches in the litigation, an offer of settlement proposal. It essentially proposed that if the Diocese and Trustees relinquished their names, identities, and all assets (including the St. Christopher Camp and Conference Center), then The Episcopal Church (TEC) would relinquish its claim to all parish properties.
After careful consideration of this proposal it was quite clear that it was not a legitimate offer of good faith negotiation and never was intended to be. Thus, the proposal has been unanimously rejected by all parties to the litigation for the Diocese of South Carolina.
1. First, if it had been legitimate, it would have come from someone with authority to bind all the parties on the Episcopal Church side. The Presiding Bishop, though referenced in the letter, does not have that authority for TEC. It would - at minimum - require an action by TEC's Executive Council, if not General Convention. Tisdale’s letter doesn't even have the signature of legal counsel for TEC. Counsel for TEC was contacted to request that they provide the necessary proof of authority, along with THEIR signature on this offer. There has been no response.
Federal Judge Provides Next Step in vonRosenburg v. Lawrence Lawsuit
Written by SCDiosAdministrator
CHARLESTON, SC, JUNE 11, 2015 – Federal District Court Judge C. Weston Houck has provided attorneys in the case of vonRosenburg v. Lawrence a 30 day window in which both parties must prepare briefs on whether or not the case should be dismissed.
Judge Houck dismissed TEC’s complaint in 2013, recognizing that the essential issues of the Diocese’s identity would be resolved by a case that has been underway for almost three years in the South Carolina courts. TEC appealed Judge Houck’s decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit after the South Carolina trial ended in August 2014.