Church moves to reconstitute the Diocese of San Joaquin

Episcopal Church News Service has news of the steps underway now to minister to the Episcopalians who live in the Diocese of San Joaquin.

“From Sonora to Bakersfield, from Stockton to Fresno, a growing number of remaining Episcopalians—those who opposed a December vote to realign the Central California Valley Diocese of San Joaquin with the Argentina-based Anglican Province of the Southern Cone—are meeting in homes, community centers and other churches, excited to be ‘moving on’ to evangelism, mission and Gospel good news.

Fed up with years of rancor over the ordination of women and gays, they say healing is emerging after initial grief and loss over the split. So are new congregations. ‘They are preparing to reconstitute the diocese; it’s heartwarming because it’s been a long haul for them,’ said the Rev. Canon Robert Moore, appointed by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori as a pastoral presence in the interim.

Also affirming, Moore said, is observing a flood of ‘support for them (which) has come from all over the world and being able to watch the church rise up and to say, ‘You do not have to do this alone, we will do whatever we have to do to help you move forward.’ ‘

The Presiding Bishop’s canon, the Rev. Dr. Charles Robertson, agrees: ‘We want to reassure all continuing Episcopalians in San Joaquin that we will continue to be there for them as the larger Church.’

Moore will be among those offering support and encouragement at a January 26 gathering in Fresno planned for continuing Episcopalians. Also present there will be House of Deputies President Bonnie Anderson, and representatives of Remain Episcopal, a group dedicated to reconstituting the diocese and advancing the Episcopal Church’s ongoing ministries in the region.

Anderson commended the faithful laity and clergy for their ‘sheer grace and hopeful courage to refrain and reconstruct the diocese and to listen to what God is calling them to do at this time in our history.

‘The Episcopal Church at large has a unique opportunity to encourage and support these faithful Episcopalians,’ said Anderson who keynoted a 2007 mission conference in San Joaquin.”

Read the rest here.

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