Priest studying Islam remains under suspension

Scott Gunn updates the status of The Rev. Ann Holmes Redding, the Episcopal priest who seeks to follow both Chrisitanity and Islam. At Gunn’s blog Seven Whole Days, he publishes a recent letter to the House of Bishops from The Rt. Rev. Geralyn Wolf of Rhode Island where Redding is canonically resident.

June 20, 2008

To: Members of the House of Bishops

From: The Rt. Rev’d Geralyn Wolf

Re: The Rev’d Dr. Ann Holmes Redding

In June of 2007, I issued a Pastoral Direction to The Rev’d Dr. Ann Holmes Redding, a priest canonically resident in the Diocese of Rhode Island but living in Seattle. She claimed to be both a Muslim and a Christian. Among other things, she was suspended from all priestly duties for one year, at which time I would review the situation. If it became necessary to take further action the Standing Committee of the Diocese of Rhode Island would be engaged in early July, 2008.

I met with The Rev’d Dr. Ann Holmes Redding on May 22, 2008, and believe that she remains committed to her profession of both Christianity and Islam. As I am leaving for pre-Lambeth engagements on June 28, prior to the end of her suspension, I have extended the Pastoral Direction until September 15, 2008. I do not think that it is fair to make a decision of this nature from afar; without ready access to either Dr. Redding or the Standing Committee.

The decision for extension was not requested by Dr. Redding, nor does it indicate a change in my understanding of the theological conflicts inherent in professing both traditions.

Dr. Redding is a woman of utmost integrity and our conversations remain open and mutually gratifying. I have great respect for her and the process of exploration to which she is committed. I also remain devoted to our Christian faith and the ordination vows taken by those who have entered the sacred priesthood.

The media is requesting an update from me. Recalling the attention this attracted a year ago, I share this communiqué with you.

Looking forward to seeing you at Lambeth.


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