Friday, September 1, 2017



September 1, 2017. 5 p.m. EDT.     Word arrived today that the two sides in the Church case and United States District Judge Richard Gergel have agreed to set up a mediation process. This means the Episcopal Church and the Episcopal Church in South Carolina on one side and the Diocese of South Carolina on the other will discuss possible resolutions of the legal issues at stake. 

In today's motion for extension of time to file a Petition for Rehearing in the SC Supreme Court, the lawyers for the independent Diocese of South Carolina wrote this:

Judge Richard Gergel has, with the parties' consent, ordered that this matter be mediated by Judge Joseph Anderson, and the parties have agreed to mediate all issues, both federal and state.

The lawyers attached the order from Judge Gergel:

TEXT ORDER: With the consent of the parties, the Court hereby appoints Senior United States District Judge Joseph F. Anderson, Jr. as the mediator in this matter. Judge Anderson will communicate with the counsel to initiate the mediation process. AND IT IS SO ORDERED. Entered at the direction of the Honorable Richard M. Gergel on 8/30/17.

This is all we know at the moment: on August 30, Judge Gergel ordered a mediation to which the two sides had already agreed, Judge Anderson will mediate, and apparently all issues state and federal are on the table for settlement. 

I will keep you posted as I get more information about the mediation process. 

The mediation order is in the document entitled  "Second Motion for Enlargement of Time to File Petition for Rehearing" Sept. 1, 2017. 11 p. Find the Second Motion here .