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The disciplinary process for addressing clergy misconduct in the Diocese of South Carolina is detailed in Canon XXVIII. After receiving a written Charge against a Priest or Deacon which it determines requires an investigation, the Standing Committee of the Diocese shall appoint a Church Attorney to investigate the charge on behalf of the Standing Committee. If the Standing Committee concludes, from that report, that the information before it, if proved at trial, provides probable cause to believe an offense was committed and that the accused clergy committed the offense, it shall issue a Presentment to the Ecclesiastical Court.
The Ecclesiastical Court of The Diocese of South Carolina is established by Canon XXVIII as having eleven members, both clergy and lay, serving for 3 year terms. The Canon calls for a majority of the membership to be clergy, with both orders together electing a Presiding Judge each year to oversee any proceedings. In the event that charges of misconduct against a clergyman in the Diocese issues in a formal Presentment of charges from the Standing Committee, a Trial Court is convened from the members of the Court to hear the evidence and render a verdict.
The Rev. Canon Mike Malone (Retired, Hartsville)
Mr. Bill Howle (St. Matthew’s, Darlington)
The Very Rev. David Thurlow (St. Matthias, Summerton)
The Rev. Dr. Michael Ridgill (Holy Cross, Stateburg)
The Rev. Michael Clarkson (Our Saviour, Johns Island) Presiding Judge
Mr. Lane Brown (St. David’s, Cheraw)
Mr. Mark Evans (St. James, Charleston)
The Rev. Linda Manuel (Grace Parish, N. Myrtle Beach)
The Rev. Bill Oldland (St. David’s, Cheraw)
Mr. John Acken (Holy Comforter, Sumter)
Mrs. Ann Hester Willis (St. Michael’s, Charleston)
For additional information regarding the Ecclesiastical Court contact the Rev. Canon Jim Lewis, Canon to the Ordinary at firstname.lastname@example.org or (843) 722-4075.