Julia Duin in Sunday's Washington Times
Many have tried to take their (sic) property with them, including 11 congregations in northern Virginia. These 11 are being sued by the Episcopal Church and the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia.Emphasis added.
Today, the Rev. John Yates, rector of the Falls Church, the largest of the 11 congregations at 2,500 members, will ask congregants for a "one-time special sacrificial gift" - his words - to make up for a $300,000 shortfall in contributions.
The church recently slashed its $6 million budget by 5.4 percent.
Neal Brown, the rector of St. Margaret's Anglican Church in Woodbridge - formerly St. Margaret's Episcopal - said his congregation of 170 souls eked out $40,000 from their operating budget for legal fees.
"Things are so bad, we can't make any color copies on our copy machine," he told me.
Jim Oakes, vice president of the ADV, says there has been talk of "going to the wider Christian community" to plead for funds. This could get interesting.
"The Episcopal Church seems to be determined to take this until the bitter end," he said. "We are concerned about how we'll handle this next round around the track. We don't have many deep pockets underwriting this."
Can you say, IRD? How about Following the Money?