The Bishop of Connecticut is cleared

Updated with the Hartford Courant’s story.

From the diocese:

An elected Episcopal Church review committee has decided to drop all charges brought against Bishop Andrew D. Smith by the rectors and vestries of six parishes in the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut.

Those rectors and some of their vestry members (elected lay leaders) had filed ecclesiastical charges against their bishop, alleging inappropriate application of canon (church) law, among other charges. The charges stemmed from the six rectors’ disagreement with Bishop Smith’s decision to support the consecration of Bishop V. Gene Robinson of New Hampshire, and their refusal to accept the Bishop’s attempts at reconciliation including delegation of another bishop to them.

“I am thankful to learn that the Title IV Review Committee found no cause to bring a Presentment based on the charges filed against me by the complaining clergy and lay members of this Diocese who found themselves at odds with my decisions and actions as Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut,” said the Rt. Rev. Andrew D. Smith in a statement. “My desire has always been to bring reconciliation with the clergy and laity who sought to dissociate themselves from the oversight of their bishop and the mission and life of the Diocese of Connecticut. I will never abandon that desire and hope.

“The Episcopal Church has invested significant time and expense in responding to the charges which were filed by these members of the Diocese of Connecticut in 2005. I am deeply grateful for the care and thoroughness with which the Review Committee and the Church Attorney have investigated and considered the evidence, and I am thankful for their finding.”

Read it all. (And note a correction in the Comments. The review committee isn’t elected, but appointed.)

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