Because the church had no formal status, Lee said, their departure is the equivalent of a group of individuals choosing another religious path. By church rules, Ashey, however, could not transfer to the Ugandan church without Lee's approval. Lee said the priest may face disciplinary action, which could include being defrocked as an American Episcopal priest.
"I'm really not eager to go after Mr. Ashey in some kind of hostile way," he said. "But church law does not permit you to walk away from the ministry without some consequences."
. . .
Jim Naughton, director of communications for the Diocese of Washington, suggested that the move was an attempt to keep the dissent of a minority group in the news.
Sunday, November 20, 2005