Thursday, January 25, 2007

South Carolina Suffragan Bishop William Skilton ...

... retires resigns at the request of the Standing Committee:
After much prayer, counsel, consideration, and recognition of the Canonical safeguards respecting Suffragan Bishops, I have decided to resign as Bishop Suffragan of South Carolina. This decision, freely made by me, is at the request of the Standing Committee of the Diocese and with the concurrence of the bishop-elect, Mark Lawrence. The Standing Committee has agreed to provide me with all the benefits that I requested.
From here. Comments reveal some strong divisions within the diocese and some insight into the election of bishop-elect Mark Lawrence. See also "Episcopal Forum of SC tells bishops and standing committees of concerns about the South Carolina bishop election" from October 2006:
We are writing as an assembly of Episcopalians in the Diocese of South Carolina who are working together to retain and strengthen ties with The Episcopal Church. We ask you to take seriously our concerns regarding the future of our diocese and the strength of our Church.
. . .
In our diocesan election process only candidates who had declared themselves ready to sever their ties to The Episcopal Church were on the ballot. Although several more moderate candidates were proposed by both nomination and petition, they were excluded from the election. Mark Lawrence was broadly supported as an individual, and as the best choice available. However, his election is being touted in the diocese as a mandate for separation from The Episcopal Church. We want to emphasize the fact that that is not unanimous, nor do we accept it.

Our concern is heightened by his expressed intention to separate from The Episcopal Church....
Read the whole thing.

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