FORT WORTH: Presiding Bishop will convene special diocesan convention

david at david at
Fri Jan 9 16:52:40 EST 2009

FORT WORTH: Presiding Bishop will convene special diocesan convention

By Mary Frances Schjonberg, 
January 08, 2009 
 Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said January 7 that she will convene a special meeting of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth convention on February 7. 

Jefferts Schori will ask the convention to elect a provisional bishop for the diocese. The agenda will include the election of lay and clergy representatives for various diocesan leadership positions and adoption of a budget. It will also include approval of governance and organizational resolutions, including ones that would declare null and void certain amendments to the diocesan constitution and canons that were advocated by former diocesan leadership as a means to take the diocese out of the Episcopal Church.  

Jefferts Schori said that she would call the meeting because there is "no bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth, or any qualified members of the Standing Committee." She said in the announcement that she had consulted with "faithful Episcopalians" who form the Steering Committee of North Texas Episcopalians, the group that has led the effort to keep the diocese aligned with the Episcopal Church. 

At the November 15 meeting of the Fort Worth convention, delegates voted to leave the Episcopal Church and to align with the Argentina-based Anglican Province of the Southern Cone by way of four constitutional amendments that rescinded accession to the Constitution and Canons of General Convention. 

Fifteen canonical changes were also approved by a voice vote.  Following those actions, Jefferts Schori inhibited then-Fort Worth Bishop Jack Iker and later declared that he had renounced his orders in the Episcopal Church. Iker objected to both the inhibition and the Presiding Bishop's declaration, claiming in the case of the inhibition that Jefferts Schori no longer had authority over him and calling the renunciation declaration an "abuse of the canons." 


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