The Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth writes to the former diocesan leadership. The letter can be seen here at Episcopal Cafe.
Here's what the news release said:
The Standing Committee of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth along with the Rt. Rev. Edwin F. Gulick Jr., provisional bishop of the diocese, have authorized a letter be sent to the attorneys working with the former bishop, the Rt. Rev. Jack L. Iker, seeking a peaceful and orderly transfer of property and other assets still held by Bp. Iker and others working with him who have left the Episcopal Church.
The Rev. Frederick Barber, president of the Standing Committee, said, “Our hope is to work together with those who left the Episcopal Church to make this period of transition as painless as possible in what has been a sad time for all of us. Those who left remain our brothers and sisters in Christ. But we also know we have a sacred responsibility to the Episcopalians of the diocese to be good stewards of property that is held in trust for generations of Episcopalians past and to come.”
The letter requests that Bp. Iker and those working with him “preserve and protect all church funds, records, and other real and personal property of the Diocese and its congregations currently under their control.”
The letter further requests that those who left the Episcopal Church “cease using the name of and claiming authority under the ’Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth’ and each of its congregations, e.g., ‘St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church,” as well as stop using the official logo and seals of the Diocese and its congregations. The letter points out that such use is not authorized, that it violates the rights of the existing diocese and “unnecessarily creates confusion among third parties.”
The letter, written by diocesan chancellor Kathleen Wells, is addressed to the Hon. William T. McGee Jr., the former chancellor of the diocese. He is understood to still be representing Bp. Iker and others who left the Episcopal Church. A copy also was sent to Rickey Brantley, former assistant chancellor of the diocese.
Wells requests a meeting be scheduled and writes, “I look forward to working with you and others to accomplish this transition and hope that we can offer a model to others in the manner that we effect these remaining details of this sad chapter in the life of our spiritual community.”
What will happen? Who knows? As a good friend said, I am not optimistic but I AM hopeful. Christians are always hopeful.