Saturday, July 11, 2020





ALARM IN CHARLESTON
with updates:
 July 9
July 10
July 11



July 8, 2020:
It is Wednesday, 8 July 2020, and time for our weekly review of the COVID-19 pandemic. To put it bluntly, it is time to ring the alarm in Charleston. Let's look at the data in our usual source, Worldometers.

Cases in the world continue to spread. In the last week (July 1-8), 1,367,223 new cases were reported for a total of nearly 12,000,000. This is a rising rate of 13%, the same as the last few weeks. There is no abatement of the spread in the world. However, this is very uneven as some countries are seeing declines and some the opposite. The United States continues to be the exploding epicenter in the world with twice as many cases as the next country, Brazil. On the other hand, most European countries have gained control over their cases. Since the U.S. has virtually no national policy on combating the plague, it is running rampant in America. There is no end in sight.

As for deaths in the world, there were 32,706 in the last week, a 6% rate, and down slightly over the last few weeks. Still, over half a million people have died of the disease in the world. The U.S. has by far the highest number of deaths. Remember all of this has happened in the last six months.

The figures for the U.S. show a rapid spread of the disease, at least in the southern and western parts of the country. Overall, the U.S. counted 369,542 new cases in the last week (July 1-8), for a rising rate of 14%. Both the numbers of new cases and the rate of increase are rising. (June 17-24, +216,007, +10%; June 24-July 1, +303,503, +13%).

While cases are spreading in America out of control, the death rate is actually falling. Last week there were 3,868 deaths, for a rate of 3%. This is a sharp decline from the previous week (June 24-July 1) of 6,647, 5%. The average numbers of deaths during the last week was about 500 per day. This is a significant drop from the height of deaths of 2,000/day several weeks ago. Speculation holds that the rise in new cases and decline in deaths comes perhaps from the spread among young people who are less likely to die of the disease.

Now we arrive at South Carolina. The plague is clearly out of control in the state, particularly in Charleston County. The state added 10,953 new cases last week (July 1-8) for a rising rate of 30%. Note this is more than twice the national rate. SC now lists 47,352 cases. At the first of June, a bit more than a month ago, SC had 12,000 cases. This is a four-fold increase in just over a month. In the last two weeks, the numbers have nearly doubled. Deaths in SC are also spiking. In the last week, the state reported 107 deaths for a total of 846. This is by far the worst week of the pandemic in the state. 

Charleston County is now the hottest spot of the plague in South Carolina. It did not start out that way. The first hot spot was Richland County, until it was overtaken by Greenville Co. No more. Charleston Co. is now listing the most cases in the state: 6,073. To put this in perspective, the leading hot spot in Alabama is Jefferson County (Birmingham). It has a population of 659,000 and 5,461 cases. Charleston Co. has about half the population (350,000) and 6,073 cases. This means COVID-19 has spread twice as fast in Charleston as in the hottest spot in Alabama, a dubious distinction.

For more details on the disease in SC, see the Post and Courier here .

What are the local officials in South Carolina and Charleston doing about the health emergency rapidly unfolding there? If they are doing anything at all, it is not apparent, and certainly not known to me. In fact, looking at the pictures from the Fourth of July weekend, nothing is being done to stop the spread of the disease. If no measures are taken to stop the spread, we can expect COVID-19 to continue to spread quickly across the state, and particularly the lowcountry. It is time to sound the alarm in SC. It is urgent.

Alabama is also seeing rapid spread of the disease. There were 7,740 new cases last week, for a total of 45,785. This is a rising rate of 20%. This is also cause for alarm. In the last month, the number of cases has more than doubled. There is also a high death rate. Last week, 83 people died in AL of the virus, for a total of 1,033. This is a steady rate of the last few weeks. As in SC, nothing is being done in AL to stop the spread of the highly contagious disease. In fact, both states are opening up more and more public places and planning to reopen schools next month.

The bottom line of the day is that COVID-19 is out of control in the United States, particularly in South Carolina and Alabama, indeed in all the lower south and the west. Yet, virtually nothing is being done by the authorities to stop the spread of the disease. While most of the rest of the world has gotten a handle on the COVID, the U.S. and the local states have apparently given up on any attempt to stop the disease. This is a national shame and disgrace. We the people of the United States should not accept this state of affairs. We should expect, and demand, more of our leadership. There is no time to waste.

I wish I had some good new to offer today, but I have not. As I see it, this is the time to sound the alarm. A few more weeks of this and we will see vastly worse conditions in our communities. Now is the time to act. For instance, now is the time to prepare the schools to return children but under the utmost of protection.

There are some things that we as individuals can do to protect ourselves. Anyone over the age of 60 and/or with underlying immune deficiencies should stay at home as much as possible. I am in that category. I go out in public only for necessities. When I took a trip recently to visit family in MS, I splurged for a private room on the train. The people in my household go to the grocery store once a week and other public places only by necessity. We always wear mask and gloves when in public. When help comes into our house, we require mask and gloves. The Episcopal churches of Alabama are still closed. We are awaiting word from the bishop on what to do after July 15 [News flash---Bp Sloan just announced churches will remain closed until at least 1 August.]. All of this is not easy. We miss our friends and our freedom greatly.

Finally, remember we are here for the living of this hour, as frightening and worrisome as it is. We are here for a reason. Let us honor it. Peace. 

________________________________

P.S. Let us not allow the darkness of the hour to drive us to despair. There is wonder and beauty all around us if we but look for it. I have only to walk in my garden to restore my soul. Even on a cloudy day as today, it never fails to fill me with awe and wonder. Here is one corner of my garden this morning:



___________________________________

UPDATE. July 9, 2020:

As of the data early today, South Carolina added 1,557 cases of COVID-19 in the last 24 hours. The total of cases in SC is now 48,909. Also, in the one day, 37 people died of the disease in the state bringing the mortality up to 884. Charleston County continues to surge. It added 264 new cases in one day to lead the state, with 6,337 cases. These figures show that the disease is continuing to spread more rapidly in SC, particularly in Charleston than in most parts of the U.S. At the present rate of spread, SC will see twice as many cases in a month.


UPDATE. July 10, 2020:

In the last 24 hours, SC added 1,782 new cases of COVID-19, for a total this morning of 50,691 in the state. Number of deaths is now 905. Charleston County continues to spike, and to lead the state in the infection rate. There were 362 new cases in the last day, for a total now of 6,699 in the county. Clearly, the disease is spreading quickly in South Carolina, particularly in the Charleston area (Jl 8=6,077; Jl 9=6,337; Jl 10=6,699). If the local authorities are doing anything about this, it is unknown to me.

SC now has the fourth worst outbreak of COVID-19 per-capita  of any place in the world. See this article for a sobering view of the pandemic in SC.


UPDATE. July 11, 2020:

In the last 24 hours, SC added 1,728 new cases of COVID-19, for a total this morning of 52,419. The number of deaths in SC is now 929. Charleston County continues to spiral upwards, adding 262 new cases in the last day, bringing the total of cases in the county to 6,961. In the last four days, the county has seen a 15% rise in reported cases (the state rise was 11%). At this rate, the number of cases in Charleston Co. will double in the next two weeks. The true number of cases is probably much higher. The state department of health estimates the actual case number in the county as 42,754. See their web site here for details on SC counties and ZIP codes. 

SC has one of the fastest moving rates of infections in the country, indeed in the world. The disease is out of control in the state. The worst of this is in the lowcountry. This situation is only going to get worse. National and local responses to this crisis are chaotic and obviously completely ineffective. Nothing is being done to stop the spread of this highly infectious and deadly disease. We are on our own. As for me, I wear face mask and gloves when I have to go out in public and I stay as far away from other people as possible. What else can we do? Our official institutions are failing us. This is a national humiliation.  

Friday, July 10, 2020





BISHOP LAWRENCE SIGNALS RETIREMENT



Bishop Mark Lawrence informed his diocese yesterday that he is calling for a bishop coadjutor. This is a signal that he is seriously considering retirement in the near future. Find the press release of this here .

Lawrence is 70 years old. He is not required to retire at 72, but calling for a coadjutor means he is keen to leave office sooner rather than later. The coadjutor would become the diocesan bishop upon the resignation of Lawrence. In the Episcopal Church a diocese may expect to take 18 months to put a bishop coadjutor in place. 

As Lawrence's retirement nears, it is not too soon to start looking at historical legacy. What difference did his episcopacy make? In a word, plenty. He presided over the biggest schism in the Episcopal Church in the Twenty-First Century. That is a big deal.

At this point, how one looks at Lawrence will determine whether he or she sees him as a positive or negative historical force. His followers adore him and hang on his every word. His detractors do not, to say the least. As we approach an assessment, let us begin with the empirical evidence we have on hand in the official statistics of the diocese(s).

Lawrence was installed as bishop of the Diocese of South Carolina in 2008. At that time, the diocese had 31,559 baptized members. In its latest figures (2018), his diocese listed 20,763 members. That is a decline of 10,793, or -34%. 

Communicant numbers are more revealing. A communicant is a person who attends church at least once a year. When Lawrence arrived in 2008, the DSC counted 27,670 communicants. In its latest figures (2018), his diocese listed 12,126 communicants. This is a decline of 15,544 people, or -56%. To put it simply, Lawrence presided over a diocese that lost more than half its communicants.

But, what about growth since the schism of 2012? Same downward trajectory. In 2013, the year after the break, Lawrence's diocese listed 17,798 communicants. Five years later, 2018, it counted 12,126 communicants. That is a decline of 36%. In other words, Lawrence's organization lost a third of its regular members after the schism. Even more telling is the trend of constant and relentless decline of numbers year after year.

Another way of looking at numbers is in Average Sunday Attendance, that is, how many people are sitting in the pews. In 2013, the year after the schism, Lawrence's diocese counted an ASA of 9,292. In 2018 it listed 8,875, a fall of 4%. The trajectory is the same, yearly decline.

Then, what about budget? When Lawrence arrived in 2008, the diocesan budget was app. $3m ($2,995,289). His last diocesan budget, 2019, listed $2,551,000, a decline of 9% in the 12 years. However, the 2019 budget was bloated by an unidentified gift of $543,000 for legal expenses. Removing that one-time item, would leave a budget a third less than that of 2008. At any rate, Lawrence's diocese has a considerably smaller budget than that of 12 years ago not even accounting for inflation.

Thus, the empirical evidence of membership and budget statistics show a dramatic and relentless decline in the Lawrence's diocese, most markedly after the schism of 2012.

There is a bigger picture here greater than just numbers. Lawrence presided over the largest schism in the Episcopal Church since the Civil War, 175 years ago. In all fairness to him, we must recognize that he did not make the schism by himself. In fact, the process of moving the diocese of South Carolina away from the Episcopal Church had been going on within the diocese since 1982, 26 years before he arrived. There is some evidence that suggests he was chosen by people who wanted a schism in order to carry out their pre-conceived plan of leaving TEC. If this is true, and I suspect it is, one could see him as a tool rather than as an instigator. If so, he must have satisfied the plotters well as he was richly rewarded for his leadership, and he remains highly popular in his new diocese.

Yet, looking at Lawrence's diocese today it is hard to see any success, or a bright future. Before the schism, Lawrence and the diocesan leadership of shrewd lawyers and anti-Episcopal Church zealots told their followers certain points that turned out to be untrue. They said the diocese was independent and could leave the Episcopal Church intact and at will. The federal court shot that down last September. The U.S. district judge in Charleston declared that the contingent that left the Episcopal Church also left the Episcopal diocese. They created a new entity, and must find a new name and identity. The historic diocese did not leave the Episcopal Church.

They also told the people they could leave the Episcopal Church with their local properties intact. The South Carolina Supreme Court shot that down in 2017. Even though the circuit judge overturned this recently, his Order is not likely to stand under appeal. Odds are that the state's higher courts will uphold the SCSC decision. At that, 29 parishes will return to the Episcopal Church leaving the Lawrence contingent with 6 parishes from the old diocese.

The old diocesan leaders also led the majority of the people to believe they would remain in the Anglican Communion if they left TEC. Not true, even after the new diocese joined the Anglican Church in North America. The ACNA is not now, and no doubt will never be, in the Anglican Communion. The Archbishop of Canterbury has declared it to be an independent Christian denomination outside of the Anglican Communion. The ACNA bishops will not be invited to the Lambeth Conference in 2022. The fact is that Lawrence's organization, that now calls itself the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina is Anglican in name only. It is not in communion with the Archbishop of Canterbury. It is not Anglican by the dictionary definition of the word Anglican.

Thus, the legacy of the schism is unfulfilled promises and decline. Although all of this certainly cannot be put on Lawrence himself, the fact remains he was the bishop of the diocese at the time of the schism.

What happens to the new diocese after Lawrence? The outlook is not good, mainly because it is out of step with history. It was founded to keep non-celibate homosexuals from inclusion in the life of the church. It joined a larger group devoted to that and to keeping women submissive to men. Society, even in conservative South Carolina, meanwhile is moving ever more to expanding human rights to all people. As it does, the ADSC will continue to shrink into irrelevance.




A GARDEN IN HIGH SUMMER



It is Friday, 10 July 2020, and time to get our minds off the troubles besetting us these days. If we do not take breaks once in awhile, we may too easily be overwhelmed by the gravity of it all. This is a dark hour of crisis upon crisis. We cannot make the dangers go away but we can put them in a larger setting. A good way to do that is to enjoy the beauty and wonder of nature all around us. For me, it is my botanical garden.

We have had an unusually rainy last few months. Normally, summers in the south are hot and humid with the occasional afternoon thundershower. The weeks of almost daily rain we have had made the whole garden lush, more than is typical in a high summer of the south. Of course, the rain has also brought an abundance of weeds and insects but every gardener knows how to deal with them. I'll take the rain any day.

So, strolling around my garden this week we see:

Crepe myrtle. It is one of the most common flowering shrubs of the south, and for good reason. It is the colorful glory of a southern summer. This is "Tuscarora." a large bush with red blossoms. The big green shrub is Spartan Juniper, a good selection for an upright evergreen. The palmetto is Sabal minor.  This part of the garden, the street side, has a semi-circular walk path going from trellis to trellis.


Inexpensive decorative pieces dot the garden to add interest. This Greek maiden in a shady alcove is about to be devoured by the Spartan Juniper behind her. Windmill palm is on one side, Francis Mason Abelia on the other.


The roses continue to bloom until frost although they are not as prolific after the first flush of flowering in May. This is a shrub rose called "Magic Blanket." It puts out a profusion of pure white flowers. 


Every southern yard/garden should have banana tree(s). They are easy to grow and add good interest and texture to the landscape. The large one produced a stalk of thumb-sized bananas last year but has not bloomed so far this year.


Butterfly bush (Buddleja davidii "Harlequin"). If you want to attract butterflies to your garden, give them the plants they love and a source of water low on the ground. This plant is a favorite. It puts out numerous purple flower stalks and blooms a long time. Easy to grow perennial shrub.


Althaea, aka Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus). Flowering shrub ubiquitous in the south. Prefers full sun. This one is getting too much shade but still blooms beautifully.


Abelia x chinensis, "Rose Creek." The abelia family of shrubs is one of the best for southern gardens. I have many examples in my garden. They are easy to grow and may be pruned or left to grown naturally, as this one. They are often used for hedges. I like them as specimen plants. 


Red Delicious Apple. I have two dwarf apple trees but I never get to enjoy the apples. I learned after I planted them that apples are a favorite snack of deer. I live near a wilderness area called the Talladega National Forest. It abounds in deer, black bear, wild turkeys and the like. For some reason, unknown to me, the deer have not touched my apple trees this year although I have seen deer in the garden. These apples are about half grown.


The other apple tree in my garden is Golden Delicious. Apple trees will not grow in tropical climates because they require long winter chills. They will grow in the upper south. I happen to live in an area that allows me to have both some tropical and some northern plants. Plant Zones 7b and 8a overlap here. It's a gardener's paradise. In fact, the Anniston Museum of Natural History, in my county, has the largest collection of palms in the state of Alabama. Yet, not far up the road are commercial apple orchards.


I hope you enjoyed our little stroll around my garden now in its summer glory. If you were here in person, you would enjoy the butterflies and the birds. I provide both lots of natural food and they reward me richly with color and song. I have large blueberry bushes but I do not even try to collect the berries. I leave them to the birds. They reward me with wonderful music, all day every day. How fortunate am I to be surrounded by such wonders of God's work.

Even if you do not have a garden as large as mine, and I know few people who do, you can still get out and enjoy the wonders of the world all around us. Plant flowers in your yard, maybe in a planter. Go for a walk in your neighborhood. Have a stroll in the park. Ride a bicycle. Take a leisurely car ride around a state park. Bask by the lake or beach. It will do you good (as long as you remember social distancing and face coverings).

We are in a dark hour; and let's not try to pretend otherwise. It is best to face reality. This is a hard time. We will get through it. One way we can get through it is by putting things in perspective. One way we can put things in perspective is to remind ourselves we are part of a grand order of the universe that has purpose and meaning from a power greater than ourselves. Whatever happens in our lives cannot change this. The presence of God is always with us. It is all around us if we but open our eyes and see it.

Let us keep in mind we are here for the living of this hour. Peace.     















  

Wednesday, July 8, 2020





DECENNIAL LAMBETH CONFERENCE
POSTPONED, AGAIN



News broke today that the Archbishop of Canterbury has announced that the Lambeth Conference will be postponed, again, until "the British summer of 2022." Originally, the conference had been set to meet in the summer of 2020. Then, a few months ago, as the COVID-19 pandemic overwhelmed the world, the archbishop announced the meeting would be postponed until the summer of 2021. Now, as the plague is worsening, with no vaccine and no end in sight, the archbishop thought it prudent to move the gathering back yet another year. Several thousand people are likely to assemble for the conference in Canterbury. 

Find the official announcement here . This article contains a seven-minute video explanation by Archbishop Welby. Episcopal Cafe has an article about the postponement here .

This news will not be of much interest to the folks over in the new "Anglican Diocese of South Carolina" which was created in 2012 at the moment of its schism against the Episcopal Church. Even the federal court has recognized this. The ADSC is not in the Anglican Communion and its "bishop" would not be invited to the Lambeth Conference anyway. In fact, the Archbishop of Canterbury has declared more than once that ADSC's parent, the "Anglican Church in North America," is not part of the Anglican Communion. That means its "bishops" will not be invited to attend the Lambeth Conference whenever it occurs. To be sure, the ACNA has been "recognized" by GAFCON and Global South, but these are self-made, unofficial associations of socially exclusivist Anglicans and their actions are beyond the official structure of the Anglican Communion. The people in the ACNA may call themselves "Anglicans" all they wish. That does not make them Anglicans. The Episcopal Church is the only legitimate branch of the Anglican Communion in the United States. Episcopal bishops are invited to the Lambeth Conference.

Certainly everyone would agree the church should take a position of moral leadership in this moment of pandemic crisis, particularly considering the vacancy of our political leadership in this dark hour. The archbishop is right to put the welfare of human beings first, even at cost to the church.

Unfortunately, there are too many religious leaders who do not agree with the cautious approach of the Archbishop of Canterbury. Indeed, a major cause of the spread of the virus in the United States has been injudicious church gatherings. See this article about the devastating effects of the reopening of some churches around the country. Thus, it behooves church officials to approach re-opening very carefully, if they choose to re-open at all.  

Saturday, July 4, 2020





THE VIEW
FROM INDEPENDENCE DAY, 2020



It is July the Fourth, 2020, the 244th birthday of the United States of America. Usually, Independence Day is a time of pleasant summer living, no-care-in-the-world bar-be-ques, fireworks, parades, that sort of thing. Not so much this year. We Americans are in a time of great turmoil. Throughout the land there is fear, sorrow, and anxiety. There is also faith and hope.

Today, America is straining under layer upon layer of crises, at least four that I can identify. First is the public health emergency created by the coronavirus. COVID-19 is spreading through the nation at an alarming and accelerating rate. Every day seems to bring new records of cases and deaths. Meanwhile, virtually nothing is being done to stop the plague. There is no national plan of action. Indeed, the Trump administration is in denial of a problem. States and localities go back and forth on policies to no effect. The country is at the mercy of an incredibly tiny organism. This pandemic will only get worse as the year goes along. We are having a big surge now in the summer. We can expect a much bigger spike in the fall. There will be no vaccine for at least the next six months, if at all. Hundreds of thousands of Americans will die of the virus before the end of the year. All of this is highly distressing.

Next, is the economic crisis. Millions of American have lost their jobs in the last few months. The unemployment rate now stands at 11.5%, four times the normal rate. Thousands of businesses have closed, many permanently. Food banks are straining to provide provisions. Government unemployment benefits expire at the end of this month for most recipients. The outlook for the American economy is uncertain at best, and disastrous at worst. Economists are telling us to prepare for a long and slow recovery.

On top of that we have a political crisis. The president is acting beyond the norms of the accepted behavior for his office. He is defiant of the established constitutional order. He has challenged virtually all the institutions of government. His administration is incompetent at handling the problems facing the country. He is clearly unpopular. Unless matters change dramatically in the near future, President Trump and the Republicans face a landslide defeat in the November elections. However, the latest fear circulating is that Trump and his acolytes will try to nullify the election, on trumped up excuses, and retain power. If this happens, it will create the greatest political crisis since the Civil War, a century and a half ago. Everyone knows, even his friends, that Trump is unpredictable. Indeed, the country has been in turmoil for the three and a half years of his presidency. There is more to come.

Then, on top of that, we have the mass demonstrations in the streets. For weeks now, countless thousands of Americans have marched in the streets of every big city, and many small ones, demanding an end to racism in America. In some cases, these have led to clashes with the police and to acts of criminal violence. Police departments have come under heavy criticism. Symbols of our racist past, as Confederate monuments, statues, and flag, have been banished across the south, and even beyond. 

So, we have four great crises at hand: a plague, economic disruption, political turmoil, and mass social unrest. Any one of them would have been a challenge. All four together may seem overwhelming.

Looking back at history, we can see that times of great turmoil were often also times of great progress, as if the old is destroyed and a new emerges from the ruins. Extreme negative and extreme positive often go hand in hand. For instance, the Black Death hit Europe in 1347. In the next few decades, a third of the population of Europe died. It was the worst public health catastrophe in history. People commonly believed it was the apocalypse, the end of the world. Yet, out of that ruin came the Fifteenth Century Renaissance, the most energetic and creative period in western civilization in a thousand years. The Renaissance was in many ways the birthplace of modern history. This revival would not have been possible without a clearing away of so much of medieval culture that came with the Black Death.

How about the American Civil War? Terribly destructive---600,000 Americans killed, thousands more maimed for life, property destruction beyond measure. Yet it gave us a tremendous burst of human rights, namely the end of slavery in the country. Four million human beings were released from bondage. The Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteen Amendments made giant strides in American democracy. Would any of that happened without the Civil War? Highly doubtful; and certainly not at that time.

What about the French Revolution? The best of times and the worst of times would fit the bill. The Revolution saw countless violent crowd, or mob, actions. It also saw government-led "Reign of Terror." At least 50,000 people were killed, many by grisly means. Heads rolled, literally. Yet, beyond the rush of death, there developed the first democratic republic in Europe. It established the ideals of liberty and equality that gradually became embedded in western culture in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries. The Revolution produced a long list of reforms that transformed modern history (as abolition of slavery and equality for women). Thus, out of the violent destruction of the Old Regime, came the new world of the common man, and woman.

Think too about the Great Depression and the Second World War, 1933-1945. The Depression brought untold economic decline and misery, the War unparalleled death and destruction. Yet, out of the Depression came the principle that the government is responsible for the economic welfare of the people. Out of the War came the great victory of democracy over totalitarianism. The War also started the ball rolling on the end of racial segregation.

Thus, history is replete with examples in which times of great turmoil were also times of great progress. In the vernacular, you have to break eggs to make an omelette. We can expect the same now, even though it may be hard to imagine today what all will come out of our present crises. As far as the virus goes, it seems to me it has brought the American people together as we have not been united since the end of the Cold War thirty years ago. The virus has made us realize we Americans are all in the same boat, we are one people confronting a common deadly enemy. I suspect this is at least part of the reason why we are having such large and effective mass street demonstrations for racial justice.

The economic crisis has also brought a certain unity. Democrats and Republicans in Congress came together, a great rarity, to pass legislation bringing trillions of dollars of financial relief to businesses and workers. This affirms the Depression-era principle that it is the responsibility of the government to provide for the economic welfare of the people. 

The political crisis created by the Trump presidency has forced Americans to reassess what we want in a government and in a president as well as what we want in a society. Most Americans have repudiated Trump's narcissistic disregard of the Constitution and the norms of the presidency. I suspect this has been a motivational factor in the vast street demonstrations of late. The people are rejecting Trump's politics of division. Indeed, a sea-change is now going on in our national understandings about race, something we have been loath to deal with in the past. I expect this came out of reaction to the virus and to Trump.

Today, let us take stock and recognize our present national situation for what it is. This is a dark hour in America and in the world. Let us not try to pretend otherwise. There is plenty of frightening danger all around us. Our country is in trouble. Nevertheless, accepting reality for what it is does not require despair. We Americans have been through a lot. Over the years, we got a lot wrong, a lot---slavery, Indian ethnic cleansing, internment of Japanese-Americans, just to name the most obvious. But, we have also gotten a lot right, and we have a record of trying to make right what we did wrong, even if it is slow in coming. That is what we are doing now with racism.

So, my point of the day is that regardless of how bad the present crisis is, history tells us there will be some positive good coming out of it. I think we can see some already and I believe we will see more and more. As bad as things get, and they will get worse in the next few months, the moral of the story is, do not despair. Look for the new growth that will sprout in the ashes of the fire.

The founding fathers took a big chance two and a half centuries ago. They created a unique experiment, a nation built on the ideals that common people could govern themselves, to the benefit of both the individual and the common good. They did not know if their experiment would work. Well, it has worked. It has worked for 244 years and it is still going strong today despite the enormous threats and dangers of the hour. It worked because the mechanisms built in for progress worked. The founders did not create a perfect country, far from it. But, they did create a system that had the potential for self-improvement. They had the faith that people could make a better world for themselves and their fellow human beings. And so, America is an evolving experiment, ever moving toward a more fair, just, and free society. This is the legacy of July 4, 1776. That is reason enough to celebrate today.    

Thursday, July 2, 2020





LITIGATION UPDATE, 2 JULY 2020



There was a noteworthy development in the church litigation yesterday. The Episcopal diocese of South Carolina filed "Appellees' Brief" with the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. This was the EDSC response to the brief of the party making the appeal, the disassociated organization calling itself the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina. The ADSC filed its brief with the federal appeals court on April 30, 2020.
[Note. Yesterday's brief is on the Internet, but is behind the pay wall of "Pacer." I cannot copy it here.]


A short recap:

Sept. 19, 2019, U.S. District Court Judge Richard Gergel issued "Order and Opinion" recognizing 1-the Episcopal Church diocese as the only legal heir of the historic (pre-schism) diocese, 2-Church ownership of names, marks, emblems under the Lanham Act (trademark), and 3-the Episcopal Church as hierarchical. Furthermore, Gergel issued a permanent injunction banning the new organization from publicly claiming to be in any way the successor of the historic diocese.

Oct. 7, 2019, ADSC announced it would appeal the Sept. 19 decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals.

Dec. 18, 2019, Judge Gergel denied a stay to ADSC pending the appeal. He also ordered enforcement of the permanent injunction of Sept. 19.

Jan. 14, 2020, the U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit, denied ADSC's petition for a stay pending the appeal.

Apr. 30, 2020, ADSC submitted "Brief of Appellants" to the U.S. Court of Appeals.

July 1, 2020, EDSC submitted "Appellees' Brief" to the U.S. Court of Appeals.


In an appeal of a judge's order, the onus is on the party making the appeal to prove that the original order was erroneous and must be changed by the higher court. In my reading of ADSC's brief of April 30, I found nothing to show why Gergel's decision should be overturned. It was the same old arguments we have heard from day one, all those seven and a half years ago: the diocese properly seceded from the Episcopal Church, the diocese is the only legitimate heir of the historic diocese, the diocese owns the state trademarks, episcopal church is a generic term, the diocese did not violate the injunction. The paper presented only weak, unconvincing evidence supporting these assertions. The brief certainly presented nothing to compel a court to overturn Gergel's powerful decision.

The EDSC brief of yesterday effectively emphasized several important points that supported Gergel's Sept. 19 decision. In my view, the key point of Gergel's decision, and of yesterday's brief, is the declaration that the Episcopal Church is an hierarchical institution. This means it is protected by the First Amendment from interference by the civic state. Since TEC is hierarchical, it has authority over the dioceses. When the officers of the pre-schism diocese left TEC, the Church reorganized the historic diocese under new officers. The people who left TEC have no right to claim ownership of the historic diocese. Moreover, a majority of justices of the South Carolina Supreme Court declared that the Church diocese was the heir of the historic diocese and the new organization had no right to it.

In yesterday's brief the lawyers wrote:

the First Amendment independently requires this Court to accept the hierarchical Church's determination that TECSC is the continuing Historic Diocese... (p. 31)

The EDSC lawyers went on to lay out four main arguments in their brief supporting Judge Gergel's decision:
1-Under the First Amendment and the SCSC decision, the Church diocese is the only owner of the service marks.
2-The disassociated organization violated the Lanham Act by using marks owned by TEC.
3-The disassociated organization violated state laws by using marks that belonged to the historic diocese.
4-The district court was right to issue and to enforce an injunction stopping the disassociated organization from using marks that did not belong to them.

Still, it seems to me the whole case of the Church side rests on hierarchy. If the appeals court upholds Gergel, this will seal the deal. Under federal jurisprudence, and federal takes precedence over state, the Episcopal Church will be recognized in the courts as an hierarchical institution. This would mean it has control over its dioceses. Of course, if ADSC loses in the appeals court, it could appeal its loss to the U.S. Supreme Court. So far, SCOTUS has shown no interest in wading into Episcopal Church business.

What next in the federal appeals court? Next, the ADSC will have an opportunity to make a reply to yesterday's paper of EDSC. The deadline for this is July 22, 2020. I will return with commentary on this when it appears.

After that, the appeals court in Richmond VA will decide whether to hold a hearing or to go straight to a decision. If it holds a hearing, it would be livestreamed by audio. In each of the last few times the appeals court took up the church cases from SC, a panel of three judges heard oral arguments and issued a written decision later. So far, all decisions from the U.S. Court of Appeals have been favorable to the Episcopal Church. There is no reason to think this will change. Judge Gergel wrote his Sept. 19 decision to make it virtually appeal-proof. He cited case after case in which the Fourth Circuit had already decided on certain a propos points. In other words, he has already done the work for the appeals judges.

In my view, there is very little chance the appeals court will change Gergel's landmark decision. The sooner the Church gets over this roadblock, the better. Of course, the losing side will not go down easily. They are throwing up every roadblock imaginable to forestall the inevitable. Eventually they will run out of options. The breakaways have already lost the war, which they themselves started, whether they want to recognize reality or not. The Episcopal Church won in state and federal courts.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020





NOTES, JULY 1, 2020



Greetings, blog reader, on this first day of July in the year 2020. A great deal is happening all around us these days, so much that it is hard to keep up with it all. Nevertheless, we shall try.

First, on the pandemic. It is getting worse by the day. Let us look at the data provided by our usual source, Worldometers. We will continue considering the numbers by the week, in order to get some sense of the trajectory of the spread of the coronavirus.

As for new cases in the world, last week (June 24 to July 1) saw 1,232,312, for a rise of 13%. This is a steady rise. Two weeks ago (June 10-17) there were 943,361 new cases (13%). One week ago, (June 17-24) there were 1,093,387 new cases (13%). This over the past three weeks, the disease is spreading apace at the same rate. Of course, this is uneven with some places seeing big spikes, as Brazil, and other places seeing declines.

As for deaths in the world, last week saw 34,219, a rising rate of 7%. Two weeks ago it was 32,540 (8%). One week ago it was 33,727 (8%). Again, numbers of deaths are steadily rising in the world.

The United States continues to be the epicenter of the pandemic as it has been for several months. Last week, there were 303,503 new cases reported in the U.S. This was a rising rate of 13%. This is an alarming jump from two weeks ago (162,745 cases, 8%), and one week ago (216,007, 10%). Both the numbers of cases and the rate of spread are climbing sharply. The total number of cases reported in the U.S. is now 2,727,996.

As for deaths in the United States, there is also cause for alarm. Last week (June 24-July 1), 6,647 Americans died of COVID-19. This was a rising rate of 5%. This is a dramatic rise from the week before (4,343 deaths, 4%) and the week before that (4,982 deaths, 4%). Both the numbers and rates of mortality are climbing. As of today, 130,123 Americans are reported to have died of COVID-19. The present mortality is app. 1,000/day.

South Carolina is cause for special alarm. Last week (June 24-July 1), there were 9,786 new cases, for a rising rate of 37%. This is for one week! Note this is far above the national average. In the week of June 10 to 17, SC reported 4,762 cases, 31% rise. The next week, June 17-24, SC reported 6,623 new cases, 33%. Thus in the last three weeks, SC has seen a dramatic spread of the disease in the state. As for the whole month of June, the number of new cases tripled in SC (app. 12,000 to 36,000). All signs indicate this will only continue. At this rate, SC is heading towards a medical emergency. 

As for deaths in SC, the total is 739. In the last week, 66 people in the state died of the disease, a rising rate of 10%. The is about the same number and rate of the past few weeks. There is no abatement in the mortality of this disease in SC. 

Alabama is a similar tale. The week of June 24-July 1 saw a big spike in new cases, up 6,948, or 22%. In the month of June, Alabama doubled its number of cases. As with SC, this is cause for alarm. AL now has 38,045 cases. There were 86 deaths in the state in the past week, for a total of 950. In the last month, 300 people died in the state of the disease.

All together, the new data show clearly that COVID-19 is spiraling out of control in the United States, particularly in our southeastern states as South Carolina and Alabama. The disease is running rampant in our area. Of course, some states have it even worse, as FL, GA, and LA. 

What are the authorities doing about this? I do not see any effective measures being even discussed let alone enacted to curb the spread. Thus, there is no reason to think this disease will not continue to spread like wildfire until a vaccine appears. Dr. Fauci said a few days ago, the earliest we could get a vaccine is early next year. We have at least six months to go. Do the math to see a projection of new cases and deaths. We are in for worse to come, much worse. There is no national program to bring the disease under control, likewise in out local states. We are the mercy of an incredibly tiny organism that has gained control of our lives. We will have to see it out.


Now, switching to another topic, litigation. 

As we know, the Episcopal diocese asked Judge Dickson to reconsider his outrageous Order of June 19 in which he purported to overturn the South Carolina Supreme Court decision of Aug. 2, 2017. In my opinion, the EDSC lawyers turned in an excellent paper last Monday laying out strongly their case. Now, we can expect the disassociated organization's lawyers to file a response to this. I imagine this will come within the month of July. Then, I think we can expect Judge Dickson to reject EDSC's motion for reconsideration. With that, the way will be clear for EDSC to appeal Dickson's Order to a higher court. 

The court above Dickson is the South Carolina Court of Appeals. However, if both sides agree, they could skip over this and go back to the state supreme court. This was what happened in 2015 after Judge Goodstein's outrageous decision. Both sides agreed to skip the appeals court and go straight to the SCSC. Seven months later, the SCSC held a hearing. Then, it took them nearly two years to publish their decision. 

It seems to me the EDSC side should go to the SC Court of Appeals. Surely that court would uphold the SCSC decision and order Dickson to implement it in his court. If the breakaways appeal that, which I am sure they would, EDSC would be on a much stronger footing when it appears before the SCSC justices, if they agree to take the case at all. 

On the other hand, it seems to me to be an advantage to the breakaways to go straight to the SCSC. That court is not the same as the one that issued the decision of 2017. Two justices have retired (Pleicones, Toal). They have been replaced by two new justices. One of the five, Hearn, has agreed to remove herself from the case. No one knows how the four others would vote, but perhaps they could be persuaded to side with Dickson. It is hard to imagine that the state supreme court would nullify an earlier SCSC decision, but anything is possible. Litigation in SC has been a wild ride so far; and there is still a long way to go. 

One has to bear in mind that SC is one of only two states in the U.S. (VA is the other) that allows the state legislature to elect all state judges/justices. State judges are elected by majority vote of the legislature; and they serve terms that would bring them up for re-election. Election and re-election would naturally exert political pressure on the judges. Politics and judgeships are traditionally intertwined in SC. Thus, there is no telling what the new state supreme court would do with this case. Still, it is hard to believe any state supreme court would discard an earlier decision of that court.

As for the United States court of appeals, we are awaiting the briefs of both sides. Then, the court will decide whether to have a hearing. If so, it will be livestreamed by audio. This court has already weighed in twice in this case (ordering the district judge in Charleston to get on with it). They did so expeditiously. We should expect the same this time. We will probably get a decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals before the end of the year. I would bet my bottom dollar they will uphold Judge Gergel's decision which recognized the Episcopal Church as hierarchical and the church diocese as the only heir of the historic diocese. The disassociated organization is a new creation formed in 2012 at the schism.

All of this seems to be a lot of heaviness to take. It is hard. There is cause for worry all around us. But, let us not be disheartened. There is also good news, if we look for it. For instance, just last Saturday, the diocese of Alabama ordained and consecrated a new bishop coadjutor who just happens to be a woman, the first bishop to be a woman in the history of the Alabama diocese. She will become the diocesan bishop at the end of this year. This is cause for rejoicing. It certainly was for me. Moreover, there is a sea-change going on in America about racism. Just last Sunday, the last state to honor the Confederate flag voted overwhelmingly to remove it. So see, things do change for the better. Bear that in mind as we head into another week of worsening health, economic, and political crises in America. Do not let the fear of the moment overtake the hope of a better day.

Make no mistake about it, we are in a dark hour. No one asked for this. No one made it. Yet, here we are, and here we are called to live this hour as the Christians we claim to be. Tomorrow I turn 77 years old. I have seen enough crises in my lifetime, from the end of the Second World War onward, to know we will get through this one too. This is called faith. Peace.



CHRONOLOGY


By Ronald J. Caldwell, PhD, Professor of History Emeritus


(last revised July 10, 2020)

  
 A listing of events in chronological order apropos the Episcopal Church schism in South Carolina. This will be constantly expanded and refined as a working frame for a scholarly study of the topic.
Additions? Changes?  Please e-mail me at:

ronaldcaldwell1210@gmail.com

 _______________________________



1973


Nov. 14---The State of South Carolina issued a Certificate of Incorporation to The Protestant Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina: "The purpose of the said proposed Corporation is to continue the operation of an Episcopal Diocese under the Constitution and Canons of The Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America."

1975

--- What is now known as Trinity School for Ministry Ambridge, Pennsylvania, was established as a conservative, evangelical school in the Episcopal/Anglican tradition. Mark Lawrence was an early alumnus. In time, many strong ties developed between Trinity and the Diocese of South Carolina and numerous alumni moved to serve as priests and deacons in the diocese. These ties became strongest in the episcopate of Mark Lawrence.

1976



---GC passed AO69 declaring homosexual persons to have "full and equal claim with all other persons upon the love, acceptance, and pastoral concern and care of the Church."


1979

---The General Convention (GC) of the Episcopal Church (TEC) passed Resolution 3:  "There should be no barrier to the ordination of qualified persons of either heterosexual or homosexual orientation...we believe it is not appropriate for this Church to ordain a practicing homosexual..." Forty-four bishops signed a statement rejecting the resolution.

---GC also adopted the Dennis Canon into the Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church: "All real and personal property...is held in trust for this Church and the Diocese..." The Diocese of South Carolina renewed this as the first article in its Constitution and Canons every year until the DSC convention of Oct. 15, 2010 voted to remove it from the diocesan Constitution and Canons.


1980


 May 17--- Christopher FitzSimons Allison (b. Mar. 5, 1927) elected Bishop Coadjutor of the Diocese of South Carolina (DSC)

Sept. 25---Allison consecrated Bishop Coadjutor.

1982


Jan 1--Retirement of Bishop Gray Temple.

Jan. 2---Allison became Bishop of DSC.

1985

---GC defeated a resolution:  "No one shall be denied access to the ordination process in this Church because of race, color, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation..."; passed DO82 calling for "support" of homosexuals.
September 26-28---The Diocese of South Carolina (DSC) meeting in its One-Hundred Ninety-Fifth annual convention, in Charleston, passed a resolution:  "That the 1985 meeting of the Convention of the Diocese of South Carolina respectfully notify the Presiding Bishop-Elect that we do not approve the ordination of practicing homosexuals."

Dec. 1---George Edward Haynsworth became Assistant Bishop of DSC.

1987

---TEC issued a booklet "Sexuality: A Divine Gift." Critics were outraged. Bp Allison condemned it.
  
1988

---DSC annual convention requested the Presiding Bishop (PB) to withdraw "Sexuality: A Divine Gift." It was withdrawn.

1989

Sept. 7---Edward Lloyd Salmon, Jr. (b. Jan. 30, 1934) elected Bishop.

Dec. 16---Bishop John Spong, of Newark, ordained Robert Williams, an open and partnered gay man, to the priesthood. 

1990

February---In Jubilate Deo, the Rev. Kendall Harmon, Assistant at Holy Comforter, Sumter, posted an editorial strongly denouncing Williams' ordination, Bp Spong's part in it, and even the Presiding Bishop's failure to intervene. 

Feb. 22-24---DSC annual convention: Bp. Allison condemned the ordinations of homosexuals; convention passed a resolution that it "deplores the ordination of Robert Williams by Bishop Spong as a violation of the teaching of scripture and the Episcopal Church" and asked the House of Bishops to take disciplinary action against Spong; another resolution called on the House of Bishops and the Presiding Bishop to "censure the Bishop of Newark."

February 24--Bp Allison retired. Edward L. Salmon, Jr., consecrated Bishop of DSC (served until 2008) with Presiding Bishop Browning as chief consecrator.
April---In Jubilate Deo, the Rev. Kendall Harmon, Assistant at Holy Comforter, Sumter, posted a book review of Dirt, Greed, and Sex in which he denounced homosexuality among other expressions of sex.

Fall --- the Rt. Rev. Walter Righter, Assistant Bishop of Newark, ordained Barry Stopfel a deacon in the Diocese of Newark. Stopfel was an open and partnered homosexual man. In 1991, Stopfel was ordained a priest by the Rt. Rev. John S. Spong of Newark.

Oct. 19-20---Episcopalians United, a self-styled traditionalist group, held a conference in Charleston at St. Philip's and St. Michael's.

Dec. 31---Bp Haynsworth retired.

1991

--GC, meeting in Phoenix AZ, dominated by widely competing views on sexuality in contentious sessions; no consensus on the ordination of homosexual persons. It called for deeper dialogue on human sexuality.

Nov. 8---the Episcopal Synod of America, a traditionalist group, met in Fresno CA (Diocese of San Joaquin) and formed a "missionary diocese." The Presiding Bishop asked them not to implement their plan as it would lead to schism.

Nov. 14---Canon Michael Malone and Mrs. Rosemary Drakeford conducted a workshop in Pinopolis for parish facilitators to discuss the issues raised by the GC.

1992

March 13-14---DSC annual convention passed a resolution including: "Genital sexual expression is to be understood and taught as God's gift exclusively for men and women united in Holy Matrimony."

1993

April 20---DSC Standing Committee voted to direct its President (Rev. Ladson Mills III) "to respond to S.J. [sic] George's Parish, Maplewood, New Jersey expressing grave concern over their calling an openly practicing homosexual as their rector and allowing him and his partner to live in the rectory."
  
1994

---GC met in Indianapolis and amended Canon I.15.5 to read: "No person shall be denied...equal place...[in] this Church...because of...sexual orientation." It also issued a study document on human sexuality affirming only heterosexual relations. At the meeting, 106 bishops, including those from SC, signed a statement that said in part:  "Marriage is a union of husband and wife, one man and one woman..." and "Sexual relationships between members of the same sex are also a denial of God's plan, and cannot be condoned by the Church."

1995

February---Ten conservative bishops filed charges of heresy against Bishop Righter. On May 15, 1996 a Church court dismissed charges against Righter holding that neither the doctrine nor the discipline of TEC prohibited the ordination of a homosexual person in a committed relationship.

Oct. 7---the Very Rev. William Skilton elected Bishop Suffragan over four other candidates.  



1996

---the Rev. Kendall Harmon joined the "Editorial Advisory Board" of Jubilate Deo, the DSC newsletter. He remained on the Board until 2002 when he became "Editor."

Mar. 2---Skilton consecrated Bp Suffragan; served until 2007.



1997

Jan. 23-26---SEAD (Scholarly Engagement with Anglican Doctrine) met at the Cathedral of St. Luke and St. Paul. This conservative group had met annually at Virginia Theological Seminary. Later this was replaced by Mere Anglicanism.

Feb. 28-Mar. 1---At DSC annual convention, Bp Salmon declared "We expect Holy Matrimony to be the context for sexual relations." and "We do not bless single-gender relationships as Holy Matrimony."

---GC met and passed resolution apologizing to homosexual persons "for years of rejection and mistreatment by the Church."


September 8-9 --- Representatives of various traditionalist groups met at All Saints, Pawleys Island. Host was Chuck Murphy. Issued "First Promise" denouncing the 1997 General Convention on: new presiding bishop, ordination of women, and sexuality. Attendees included Bp Allison, Dow Sanderson, Kendall Harmon.

October --- The Council of DSC adopted three resolutions in reaction to TEC General Convention:  1-local churches could withhold money to TEC, 2-seek associations outside TEC,  3-opposition to the mandatory ministry of ordained women in every diocese.

1998

Feb. 27-28---At DSC annual convention, Bp Salmon deplored the recent vote of GC "which now makes the ordination of women mandatory" and added that many voices were calling to "...remove funding from the National Church..."
---Lambeth conference issues statement that homosexual practice was contrary to Scripture: "cannot advise the legitimizing or blessing of same sex unions nor ordaining those involved in same gender unions."

Aug.-Sept.---Bp Salmon announced that he and thirty other conservative bishops had signed a "Declaration to the Church" dissociating from "John Spong and his '12 Theses' as they in no way represent the doctrine, discipline, and worship of the Episcopal Church." Spong was a leading liberal bishop.

1999

Mar. 5-6---DSC annual convention passed a resolution endorsing the Lambeth statement: "...hereby accept and declare that this Diocese...will not enact or continue in force any policy or take any action in conflict with the above said Resolutions of Lambeth 1998."


Oct. 1 --- Cambridge Accord defended equal rights for homosexual persons; signed by many Anglican bishops around the world.


  
2000

  
Jan. 29--- Allison one of six bishops to consecrate as bishops Charles H. Murphy, III, rector of All Saints, Pawleys Island, and John H. Rogers, Jr., dean emeritus of Trinity School for Ministry, Ambridge PA, in Singapore. The Archbishop of Canterbury (ABC) expressed grave disappointment. the Presiding Bishop, Frank Griswold, said "I am appalled."

Feb. 11-12---at DSC annual convention, Bp Salmon recognized Murphy as a bishop and said that while he was not officially a priest of DSC, he continue on the staff of All Saints, Pawleys Island.

---GC approved: Resolution DO39 to "acknowledge" homosexual couples; and CO43 supporting the Cambridge Accord (Oct. 1, 1999) promoting rights for homosexuals.
August --- Murphy and Rogers form Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) under the auspices of Rwanda and South East Asia.

September --- DSC filed notice that All Saints, Pawleys Island, holds its property in trust for DSC and TEC. All Saints sued to claim the property.

Nov. 27-29---US Anglican Leader's Summit met in Atlanta. The Rev. Frank Limehouse III represented DSC at the request of Bp Salmon. It was meant to rally and unify "orthodox," or traditionalist Episcopalians and Anglicans.

2001

  
Jan. 4 --- DSC Standing Committee gave consent to election of the Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori as Bishop of Nevada.


March 8-10---at the annual DSC convention a resolution was offered: "Diocese of South Carolina's strong objections to the actions of the House of Bishops and the General Convention of 2000 and warns that if further action is taken to implement the proposed changing of the Book of Common Prayer to include a "marriage" service for same-sex couples, the blessing of same-sex couples and the authorizing of non-celibate homosexual persons...South Carolina will be forced to reconsider its relationship with the Episcopal Church..." This resolution was tabled and therefore not passed.

June 24 --- Allison one of six bishops consecrating two new bishops for AMiA in Denver. Bp Salmon wrote in Jubilate Deo, "I profoundly regret the decision of the Anglican Mission in America leadership to take such a step."

Oct. 15 --- a state judge ruled against DSC in All Saints, Pawleys Island, case. DSC appealed.

2002

Jan.---the Rev. Kendall Harmon became Editor of Jubilate Deo, a post
he kept until 2009 when be became Assistant Editor.

Mar. 12---Salmon, Skilton, and Allison among 19 bishops issuing "An Appeal for the Preservation of Godly Union" ["traditional orthodox faith"] at the House of Bishops meeting, Camp Allen TX.

2003

  
March 18---the House of Bishops adopted a report, "The Gift of Sexuality: A Theological Perspective," compiled by its Theology Committee:  "Because at this time we are nowhere near consensus in the Church regarding the blessing of homosexual relationships, we cannot recommend authorizing the development of new rites for such blessings."  While it took no explicit stand on the ordination of homosexual persons, it implied opposition: "we believe it is imperative that the Episcopal Church refrain from any attempt to 'settle' the matter legislatively." 

June 7---Diocese of New Hampshire elected Rev. Gene Robinson, an openly gay and partnered priest, as its next bishop.
---Salmon, Skilton, and Harmon issued a letter strongly condemning Robinson's election.

June 9---Salmon, Bishop Duncan of Pittsburgh, and Harmon issued a joint statement strongly advising the rejection of Robinson's election.

July 15---Salmon, Skilton, and Allison among 24 bishops issuing a statement declaring "impaired communion" with the Canadian Diocese of New Westminster that had recently approved liturgies for the blessings of same-sex unions.

July 23---Salmon, Skilton, and Harmon attend conservative meeting in Fairfax VA calling on GC to reject Robinson.

Aug.-Sept.---in Jubilate Deo, Bps. Salmon and Skilton denounced the election of Robinson as "clear repudiation of the teaching of Holy Scripture and the tradition of the church" and called on GC to reject the election.


---GC revised Canon III.1.2 to read: "No person shall be denied access to...any ministry...in this Church because of...sexual orientation..."

Aug. 5 --- House of Bishops (HOB) at GC voted 62-43 to confirm Gene Robinson as the next bishop of New Hampshire. Before the vote, deputy the Very Rev. Mark Lawrence, of San Joaquin, spoke on behalf of the minority report composed by himself and two others. Their report condemned same-sex relationships.

Aug. 6---the Rev. Kendall Harmon made a speech on the floor of the House of Deputies at GC calling the vote on Robinson "catastrophic."

Aug. 18---Salmon met with the clergy of DSC on a "deadly serious situation" [Robinson].


Aug. 18 --- DSC Standing Committee passed a resolution to call a special diocesan convention in the Fall; passed another resolution declaring the acts of the recent GC on Robinson and blessing of same-sex unions "in conflict with the Canons of the Diocese of South Carolina and have no binding effect in the Diocese."


Oct. 2 --- DSC held a special convention to condemn the actions of General Convention (GC). Bp. Salmon said "The General Convention has endorsed a new religion." The Standing Committee offered a resolution: "Episcopal Church has exceeded its authority and departed from its constitution, in confirming the election, as bishop, of a non-celibate homosexual man and in permitting same-sex blessings..." and "urges recognition by the International Primates, of those orthodox dioceses and parishes...as the legitimate expression of the Anglican Communion ...in the United States." The first part condemned the confirmation of Bp Robinson; the second part called for splitting TEC.

The Rev. Tommy Tipton, of Holy Cross/Faith Memorial in Pawleys Island, presented a statement protesting the resolution signed by 19 clergy. Steve Skardon also presented a substitute resolution. All were voted down. With the change of one word, "apostasy" to "actions" the resolution passed.

Oct. 7-9---American Anglican Council held a meeting of "orthodox" leaders at Plano TX.

Oct. 18---80-page report issued by panel of 17 called by Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams called on the 50 bishops who consecrated Robinson to express regret but did not expel TEC from the AC. Kendall Harmon said this was not sufficient.

Oct. 23---Kendall Harmon attended meeting of conservatives at Truro Episcopal Church in VA that agreed to form a "network of confessing dioceses and parishes."

Nov. 2---Robinson consecrated Bishop of New Hampshire. Kendall Harmon sent as representative of American Anglican Council alternative meeting of 500 protesters.

Nov. 4---Salmon, Skilton, and Allison among 38 bishops issuing a statement condemning Robinson's consecration.

Nov. 20---Salmon one of four bishops issuing a "Memorandum of Agreement on Establishing a Network of Confessing Dioceses and Congregations in the Episcopal Church" at "The Mainstream Meeting." The statement of the meeting called on the Global South primates to recognize the Network, to separate from the Archbishop of Canterbury if he did not support them, and to campaign in the Anglican Communion against TEC. The bishops said "We commit to the guerilla warfare of the next year."


Nov. 25 --- DSC Standing Committee passed resolution to join the "Network of Confessing Dioceses and Congregations." SC one of four dioceses forming the Network of Anglican Communion Dioceses and Parishes, in opposition to Robinson.

Dec.---Group of five friends met and resolved to set up organization to keep link between TEC and DSC: Barbara Mann, Marcy Walsh, Tom Myers, Dottie Pagliaro, and Lynn Pagliaro. Episcopal Forum of South Carolina formed with stated goal "to insure that the Episcopal Diocese of SC continues to exist in full participation with ECUSA..." Lynn Pagliaro served as first president.


Dec. 23 --- Bp Salmon reported that only St. Stephen's of Charleston, and Holy Cross/Faith Memorial, Pawleys Island, may want to transfer to another bishop while Grace Church, Charleston, and All Saints on Hilton Head were divided.


Dec. 28---The Chapman Memo, by Rev. Geoff Chapman, rector of St. Stephen's, Sewickley PA, Diocese of Pittsburgh, on behalf of the American Anglican Council and its Bishops' Committee on Adequate Episcopal Oversight (AEO):   "Our ultimate goal is a realignment of Anglicanism on North American soil...We believe in the end this should be a 'replacement' jurisdiction [to replace TEC]. It then laid out a plan in three stages to accomplish this goal. The Memo was secret and stressed keeping it secret while passing it around only "orthodox" clergy (the Memo was immediately leaked). It is possible that the Chapman Memo became the blueprint for the parochial and diocesan secession movement that exploded after Robinson's affirmation.

2004


Jan. 8-9---"The Future of the Anglican Communion" conference met at St. Philip's, sponsored by the Anglican Communion Institute, an orthodox think tank. This evolved into the annual conference in Charleston called Mere Anglicanism.

Jan. 19-20---Bp Salmon attended the Network of Anglican Communion Dioceses and Congregations meeting in Dallas (Plano). SC one of twelve dioceses represented. The group elected Bishop Duncan, of Pittsburgh, its moderator, and drew up a Ten Point Plan opposing the recent decisions of GC. Chapman (see Dec. 28, 2003) addressed the conference. This group was soon commonly called the Anglican Communion Network. Salmon and Harmon soon figured prominently in the leadership of ACN. DSXC delegation in Plano: Rev. Steve Wood, Rev. John Burwell, Bp. Skilton, Lydia Evans, and Clayton Burroughs.

--- All Saints, Pawleys Island, voted to withdraw from TEC and DSC and align with AMiA, under Province of Rwanda.
Feb. 23 --- Episcopal Forum of South Carolina hosted a meeting "Seeking Unity in Diversity" in Charleston seeking common ground after the disagreements on Robinson.

March 3---The Barfoot Memorandum called for alternative primatial oversight from overseas as a step to replacing TEC.

Mar. 5---The first newsletter of the Episcopal Forum of SC suggested that the ACN may well be schismatic.

Aug. 27-Sept. 11---The Anglican Communion Network, which formed in reaction to Robinson's approval, held meetings at St. Philip's, Church of the Cross in Bluffton, and Church of the Holy Comforter in Sumter led by prominent conservatives in opposition to the decisions of TEC. (While Episcopal Forum represented the pro-TEC forces, the ACC came to represent the anti-TEC side). Jubilate Deo began carrying frequent news from ACC.

Oct. 18---The Windsor Report was issued:  recommended a moratorium on acceptance of homosexual persons as bishops and on the blessing of same-sex unions; recommended an "Anglican Covenant" whereby provinces would consult with the AC; recommended those promoting "disunity" to "express regret"; did not recommend discipline against TEC.

Nov. 1---Standing Committee voted resolutions supporting the Windsor Report and calling on bishops who supported Bp Robinson to "express regret" and remove themselves from "representative functions in the Anglican Communion." At the same time it brushed aside the cross-boundary interventions as "...actions to be of lesser concern..."

2005

Jan. 12-13---House of Bishops met in Salt Lake City. Salmon served as chief spokesman for the Anglican Communion Network that denounced the affirmation of Robinson. Salmon, Skilton, and Allison among 29 bishops who issued a statement criticizing the HOB for it weak stand on the Windsor Report and strongly endorsing the Report.

March 4-5---at the annual DSC convention, Bp Salmon endorsed the Windsor Report. The Rev. Greg Kronz was appointed to head a bishop's search committee. Resolution passed: "this Diocese honor the moratoria, as expressed in the Windsor Report, 1)the consecration of all candidates to the episcopate who are engaged in same-sex relationships..., 2)the blessing of same-sex relationships, and 3)...we will neither encourage nor initiate cross-boundary interventions..." The Rev. Canon Kendall Harmon offered two resolutions that passed identifying DSC with the wider Anglican Communion.

The bishop's search committee:  Rev. Greg Kronz, chair; the Very Rev. Craige Borrett; the Rev. Paul Fuener; the Rev. Anthony Kowbeidu; the Rev. Jeffrey Miller; the Very Rev. John Scott; the Rev. David Thurlow; John Bowden; Lydia Evans; Martha Flowers; Frances Fuchs; Keith Lackey. All but Lackey came from parishes that later "disassociated" from TEC. [Lackey later left the parish, DSC and TEC for the Ordinariate of the Roman Catholic Church.]


April 18-20---the Anglican Communion Network met in Bedford TX. SC was represented.

July 18-21---Salmon one of 19 bishops meeting in Los Angeles. No agreement.


Nov. 11-12---the Anglican Communion Network met in Pittsburgh. SC represented. A group associated with ACN issued a DVD that was distributed to the 2000+ attendees. It followed the themes of the Chapman Memo in strongly denouncing TEC and clearly suggesting that Episcopalians should abandon the Church. Harmon was a featured speaker on the DVD. It also included two videos, "Choose This Day" and "The Decision." Lawrence reiterated the themes of the videos in his two essays below of 2006.

2006

  
January---Bishop Salmon reached the mandatory age of retirement. At the request of the Standing Committee, Salmon continued to serve as the acting bishop of the diocese until Lawrence's consecration on Jan. 26, 2008.

Jan. 30---Rev. Mark Lawrence, rector of St. Paul's, Bakersfield, issued "A Prognosis for This Body Episcopal" that called for the end of the independent Episcopal Church:  "Our very survival, let alone our growth, necessitates the surrender of our autonomy to the governance of the larger church--that is, the Anglican Communion."


Feb. 27 --- DSC Standing Committee noted that All Saints, Pawleys Island, had rejected two offers of a compromise settlement.


March ---at a service in St. Paul's, Bakersfield CA, where he was rector (1997-2007), Mark Lawrence said he received a revelation from God that he was to embark on a journey. In May he allowed his name to be submitted for bishop of SC.

May 10-14---ACC held meetings in Holy Comforter Sumter, St Helena's Beaufort, and St. Philip's, to discuss issues in the upcoming GC.

June --- Katharine Jefferts Schori elected Presiding Bishop (PB) of TEC.

---GC passed: BO33 calling on dioceses to "exercise restraint" by not consenting to homosexuals; A167 affirming equality for homosexuals; AO95 calling for civi protection of same-sex couples.

June---Bps Salmon and Skilton published a pastoral letter revealing shock at the election of Bp Jefferts Schori and dismay at GC's failure to conform to the Windsor Report. 

June 21---Salmon, Skilton, and Allison among 24 bishops issuing statement condemning the "failure" of GC to take adequate action.

July 23---Rev. Lawrence posted an essay "Remaining Anglican: In Defense of Dissociation" holding that TEC was hopelessly in error and endorsing "alternative primatial oversight" [outside of TEC].

June 26 --- DSC Standing Committee voted unanimously to request from the Archbishop of Canterbury an Alternative Primatial Relationship. This was approved by resolution of the DSC convention of Nov. 9-10.


July 6 --- DSC Standing Committee interviewed four candidates for bishop: Mark Lawrence, John Burwell, Ellis Brust, and Steve Wood. Lawrence, Brust and Wood were approved.


August 26 --- DSC Standing Committee received a petition to make the Rev. Dow Sanderson a candidate for bishop. The Committee unanimously rejected it.


Sept. 11-13---Salmon among conservative bishops meeting in New York at invitation of the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Presiding Bishop. No agreement. (See Nov. 27)

Sept. 16 --- Special convention of the DSC. Mark Lawrence elected bishop of over Ellis E. Brust (chief operating officer of the American Anglican Council) and Stephen D. Wood (rector, St. Andrew's, Mt. Pleasant). [all three later left TEC]. TEC rules allowed 120 days after formalities to receive consents from the majority of 111 dioceses (minimum of 56).

Sept. 22---Salmon among 21 bishops who met at Camp Allen TX and sent a letter to HOB supporting the Windsor Report and endorsing the Anglican Covenant.

Sept. 28---Episcopal Forum held a meeting in Charleston.

Oct. 19 --- Via Media USA, affiliated with Episcopal Forum, sent letters to all dioceses stating that Lawrence would be a threat to the unity of the church.

Oct. 27---The Bishop of Dallas withdrew his request for Alternate Primatial Oversight.

Nov. 9-10 --- Annual meeting of the DSC. In his Bishop's Address, Bp Salmon criticized the new PB for her theological "relativism" and her philosophy of social gospel. The Convention passed Resolution # 1, "in requesting from the Archbishop of Canterbury and Alternative Primatial Relationship" (see June 26).

Nov. 27---Outcome of Sept. 11-13 meeting, PB and bishops issued a proposal for a Primatial Vicar to serve those dioceses that requested Alternative Primatial Oversight. The proposal was sent to the ABC and the petitioning bishops.

Dec. --- Bp Suffragan Skilton resigned office (effective Dec. 31) at the request of the DSC Standing Committee upon its agreement with the bishop-elect. Skilton wrote "I believe my departure will enable Father Lawrence to create a diocesan staff that will more effectively respond to is developing vision..." As Bishop of SC, Lawrence did hire a new staff, a new Canon to the Ordinary, and a new Visiting Bishop.

Dec. 26---St. Stephen's Church, Anson Street in Charleston, adopted a resolution to support TEC.

2007

  
March 7---Lawrence sent a letter to the Standing Committees of TEC: "...my intention is to remain in The Episcopal Church."

March 12---deadline for consents from Standing Committees for election of Lawrence as Bishop. 56 was the minimum number for approval. As of 3-3-07 46 consents had been made. 55 received by 3-12-07. PB added three days to deadline.

March 15 --- PB declared Lawrence's election null and void. Several dioceses had submitted electronic consents when the Canons required written signatures. PB announced that 50 votes were legal, six less than required. Lawrence blamed his loss on smear campaign of liberals.

April 9---HOB Task Force on Property Disputes issued a report, "Connecting the Dots," detailing a well-organized plan among conservatives to remove property of TEC.

April 17---DSC Standing Committee resolved unanimously to reconvene the diocesan convention in June.

April 26---Salmon one of seven bishops calling themselves "The Steering Committee of the Windsor Bishops" who wrote the ABC affirming their strong support for Windsor.

May 5---the Very Rev. Mark Lawrence addressed the annual meeting of the Episcopal Church Women in Beaufort.

June 7---Episcopal Forum sent a letter to the PB asking her to appoint an interim bishop. (Salmon had retired at mandatory age of 72.)


June 9---meeting of "Re-Convened 216th Convention" that decided on a new convention to elect a bishop to be held on Aug. 4.

June 11-14---The Executive Council of TEC resolved: -every diocese is required to give unqualified accession to the Constitution and Canons of TEC;  -any amendment to a diocesan constitution that attempts to change this is null and void. 

August 4 --- DSC convention elected Lawrence as Bishop. His was the only name on the ballot.


Sept. 18 --- DSC Diocesan Council passed a resolution inviting Presiding Bishop Jefferts-Schori to the diocese in February of 2008.


Sept. 19---PB announced that 8 bishops had agreed to serve as "episcopal visitors" to dioceses that had requested pastoral oversight other than the PB. [see Sept. 20]

Sept. 20-25---HOB met with ABC in New Orleans. Salmon issued a letter criticizing the meeting and rejecting the PB's offer of alternative oversight [Sept. 19] as not meeting the "needs of those who asked for it."
Oct. 29 --- PB announced Lawrence had received the consents necessary for him to become the next bishop of DSC.

Nov. 3---Episcopal Forum held a conference at Middleton Place.

Dec. 8 ---Diocesan convention in San Joaquin voted to leave TEC for the Province of the Southern Cone. Mark Lawrence, of St. Paul's in Bakersfield, was not present as he was on sabbatical in North Carolina. St. Paul's voted for secession.

2008

  
Jan. 11---PB inhibited Schofield (Bp of San Joaquin).

Jan. 26 --- Lawrence consecrated Bishop of DSC at Cathedral of St. Luke and St. Paul, Charleston. The PB was not invited. Chief consecrator was Bp E. Clifton Daniel, of East Carolina. David Booth Beers present to guide officials in legalities.

Feb. 25-26 --- PB visited DSC. Lawrence met with PB.

March 7-12 --- Lawrence attended meeting of HOB. Discussion of Windsor Report.

March 12--- Bp Schofield of San Joaquin deposed by vote of the House of Bishops.

Mar. 27 --- DSC Standing Committee and Bp Lawrence sent a letter to PB protesting the deposition of Schofield. [Almost all minutes of all meetings of the DSC Standing Committee are still held secret, unavailable to the public; only a few selected lines have been released.]

May 14-17---Lawrence at Trinity School for Ministry (Ambridge PA) for Board of Trustees meeting.

May 21-24---Lawrence at Nashotah House in Wisconsin to receive an honorary doctor's degree and meet with conservative bishops on the Board of Trustees.

June 3-4---Lawrence attended Province IV bishops' meeting at Kanuga. Discussion of upcoming Lambeth conference.

June 23-27 --- Lawrence attended the GAFCON conference [GAFCON I]in Jerusalem. Conference issues "The Jerusalem Declaration" that includes: "marriage between one man and one woman as the proper place for sexual intimacy and the basis of the family" and "we reject the authority of those churches and leaders who have denied the orthodox faith [e.g. The Episcopal Church]." Many bishops at GAFCON refused to attend Lambeth.

July 6---Lawrence journeyed to England for meetings.

July 17-Aug. 3 --- Lawrence attended the Lambeth Conference in Canterbury.

August 3---Lawrence was quoted as saying GAFCON was the heir apparent to assume leadership of the AC.

Sept. 11---Lawrence meets with the DSC clergy and stressed building bonds with Anglicans beyond TEC.

Sept. 17-19 --- Lawrence attended a meeting of HOB in Salt Lake City and protested the depositions of Schofield and Duncan. HOB deposed Duncan by vote of 88 yes, 35 no and 4 abstaining.

Oct. 1-3---Lawrence in Ambridge PA for Board of Trustees meeting of Trinity School for Ministry

Oct. 6-8---Lawrence in Sewanee TN to receive honorary doctor's degree and meet with Board of Trustees.

Nov. 6 ---DSC Standing Committee unanimously passed resolutions:  -supporting the Jerusalem Declaration as set forth in the GAFCON Conference,  2-non-recognition of the deposition of Duncan.

Dec. 3-5---Lawrence attends Province IV bishops' meeting in Jacksonville FL.

Dec. 3---Common Cause Partnership, led by Robert Duncan, formed the Anglican Church in North America, an association of various independent conservative groups.

Dec. 8-9 --- Lawrence attended the Anglican Communion Network convention in Overland Park, KS. [This is the tenth meeting Lawrence attended in 2008 outside of SC.]

2009


 Feb. 16-18---Lawrence in Belleville IL for a Men's Conference and Clergy Pre-Lenten Retreat for the Diocese of Springfield.

March 12-13 --- In his first address to an annual convention of DSC, Lawrence denounced TEC for what he called "compromises toward the Uniqueness of Christ, " "non-Canonical actions,"  and "controversies regarding Human Sexuality," but gave no specifics. In the same moment, he first publicly raised the idea that DSC might not continue to accede to and adopt the Constitution and Canons of TEC.
---In the convention, the Revs. Borrett and Harmon introduced a resolution to "Request that General Convention be suspended." This was defeated in the house of clergy. [This was the last resolution to be defeated in Lawrence's tenure.] However, resolutions were passed supporting the proposed Anglican Covenant and the Uniqueness of Christ.
---Convention also approved the office of Canon to the Ordinary. Bp. Lawrence appointed the Rev. Jim Lewis.

March 15-18---Lawrence attends House of Bishops meeting at Kanuga.

March 30-April 1---Lawrence in Bakersfield CA for ordination of his son Chad at St. Paul's Anglican Church, where Lawrence had been rector 1997-2007. St. Paul's was one of the parishes of San Joaquin that had left the Episcopal Church in 2007 under Bp Schofield. (St. Paul's returned to TEC in 2013.) 

April 15-17---Lawrence in Houston TX for meeting of Anglican Communion Partners and the Anglican Communion Institute.

April 22 --- Lawrence and 14 other bishops released 13-page document "Bishops' Statement on the Polity of the Episcopal Church" asserting virtual sovereignty of the individual dioceses.

May 18-21---Lawrence at Lake Logan NC for College of Bishops meeting.


May 29-30 --- DSC Standing Committee approved transfer of $3.5m in property to an irrevocable trust at St. Andrew's Church, Mt. Pleasant. This passed after Lawrence offered prayers for the discernment of the Committee.


June 2-4---Lawrence at Kanuga for Province IV bishops' meeting.

June 22---Anglican Church in North America formed. Robert Duncan chosen archbishop.

July-7-18---Lawrence in Anaheim CA for General Convention. GC passed DO25 and CO56 favoring homosexuals in the ministry and the blessing of same-sex unions. Lawrence one of several bishops of the Communion Partners writing the Anaheim Statement, issued on July 16, condemning the resolutions; 35 bishops signed the Statement.
July 19-21---Lawrence in Bakersfield CA to attend St. Paul's Anglican Church.

July --- St. Andrew's, of Mt. Pleasant, transferred property worth $3.45 million into a land trust.

July 28---Lawrence, DSC Standing Committee, deans, and Harmon met in wake of GC. Drew up resolutions to present at Oct. convention (see Oct. 24).

Aug. 13 --- In response to GC, Lawrence addressed the clergy of DSC condemning "the false gospel of indiscriminate inclusivity [rights for homosexuals]" and calling on DSC to distance itself from TEC.

Sept. 1-3 --- In the wake of GC, Lawrence and other Anglican Communion Network bishops met with the Archbishop of Canterbury in London.

---In late 2009 the final draft of the Anglican Communion Covenant was sent to the Anglican provinces for approval.

Sept. 18 --- SC Supreme Court reversed the trial court's decision and ruled in favor of All Saints, Pawleys Island, against DSC. The Court said All Saints held title to its property and the Dennis Canon had had no effect on that.  Neither DSC nor TEC appealed to the US Supreme Court. [see Feb. 12, 2010.]

Sept. 21-23---Lawrence in Albany NY to address a clergy retreat in the Diocese of Albany.

Oct. --- Lawrence invited Tom Tisdale to lunch; 2 1/2 hour conversation on issues in the DSC.


Oct. 20 --- DSC Standing Committee discussed resolutions for upcoming special convention; Calvary Church, Charleston, sent letter opposing withdrawing from governing bodies of TEC; Committee spent much time rewording R-5, "The Rubric of Love" and offered an amendment.


Oct. 22 --- Bonnie Anderson, president of TEC House of Deputies, sent letter to DSC--decisions of General Convention are binding on the dioceses.

Oct. 24 --- DSC held special convention and voted  -to begin withdrawing from all bodies of TEC that are in error,  -declared DO25 and CO56 null and void in DSC.

Nov. 3-4---Bishops and other representatives of seven conservative dioceses, including SC, met in Charleston to plan strategy.
Nov. 17--- Attorney Alan Runyan formally retained as counsel for DSC; became lead lawyer for DSC in litigation 2013+.

Dec. --- David Booth Beers retained Tom Tisdale as counsel for TEC in DSC.


Dec. 1 --- St. Luke's, Hilton Head, voted to remove all references to TEC.

Dec. --- Trinity Church, Myrtle Beach, voted to remove all references to TEC.

Dec. 5 --- Mary Glasspool elected by Diocese of Los Angeles to be Suffragan Bishop. [Consecrated in May 2010]. She was the second openly homosexual person to be made a bishop in the Episcopal Church.

Dec. 5 --- Episcopal Forum held a symposium in Charleston, "I an Episcopalian."


Dec. 12 --- Andrew Waldo elected bishop of Upper South Carolina. John Burwell was also a candidate (DSC Standing Committee had unanimously rejected consent to Waldo's election).


Dec. 17 --- St. Andrew's of Mt. Pleasant voted as a congregation to leave the Episcopal Church for the ACNA.  [see Mar. 28, 2010.]

Dec. 31 --- Tisdale met Wade Logan for conversation.

2010

  
January --- Mere Anglicanism conference in Charleston with theme of gender, identity, and sexuality focused on the evils of homosexuality.

Jan. 25-29 --- Thomas S. Tisdale, attorney for TEC sent 9 letters requesting information on certain parishes. Logan showed letters to Lawrence. Lawrence declared a crisis. DSC refused to give any information to Tisdale.

Feb. 9---Lawrence announced he was postponing diocesan convention from Mar. 4-5 to Mar. 26.

Feb. 12 --- Vestry of All Saints Episcopal Church, Pawleys Island, filed a motion in the U.S. Supreme Court for appealing the SC Supreme Court decision on All Saints Waccamaw. Neither DSC nor TEC joined.

Feb. 19-22 --- PB met with the Executive Committee of TEC. Discussed SC. No agreement.

Feb. 22-25---Lawrence in Birmingham AL to preach at Cathedral Church of the Advent, Very Rev. Frank Limehouse, dean.

Mar. 6 --- Episcopal Forum hosted conference in Charleston, "Enthusiastically Episcopalian."

Mar. 17 --- Lease agreement between the Trustees of DSC and Mark Lawrence. Episcopal residence at 50 Smith Street, Charleston, leased to Lawrence for one dollar a year for five years with option for another five years. In effect regardless of his status as bishop. [Entered as Exhibit DSC-28, Circuit Court trial, July 8, 2014]
---Trustees also adopted new Bylaws naming the Bishop as the President of the Corporation (see Jan. 4, 2013).


Mar. 19-24 --- Lawrence attended the HOB meeting in Camp Allen TX.
-----The Theology Committee of the HOB issued a report "Same-Sex Relationships in the Life of the Church," an 87-page study from leading authorities on both the "Traditionalist" and "Liberal" sides. This report is to date the most scholarly, balanced discussion of this topic but it drew no conclusions.
-----Andrew Waldo (bishop-elect of Upper South Carolina) and Lawrence had 1 1/2 hour get-acquainted meeting at HOB.


Mar. --- All Saints Episcopal and All Saints Anglican, Pawleys Island agreed on settlement: property valued at $10m and name to Anglicans, $375,000 to Episcopalians. All Saints Episcopal dropped appeal to Supreme Court [see Feb. 12].

Mar. 26 --- DSC convention met after being postponed (from Mar. 4-5). Demanded PB withdraw her attorney; declared DSC a "sovereign" diocese.

Mar. 28--- St. Andrew's, of Mt. Pleasant. Vestry formally enacts disassociation from DSC and TEC (congregational vote of Dec. 17).

April-May---Episcopal Forum held five regional meetings around diocese. 

April 17-32 --- Lawrence attended the Global South to South Encounter, in Singapore, a meeting of conservative Anglican bishops.

May 12-14---Lawrence in Sewickley PA for Trinity School for Ministry Board of Trustees meeting.

May 15---Mary D. Glasspool, consecrated as Suffragan Bishop of Los Angeles. Glasspool was the second openly homosexual person to be made a bishop of TEC.

May 20---Lawrence at Nashotah House, Wisconsin, to attend commencement.


May 22 --- Andrew Waldo consecrated bishop of Upper South Carolina in Christ Church, Greenville. Lawrence did not attend.


July 16 --- DSC Standing Committee resolved non-recognition of Mary Glasspool as a bishop of the Episcopal Church.


August 25-26---Lawrence at Virginia Theological Seminary; Washington DC where he met a group at the Heritage Foundation; and Sewickley PA.


Sept. 2 --- Clergy conference, St. Paul's Summerville. Alan Runyan made a presentation attacking the Title IV revisions in the canons of TEC. These charges were background to the six proposed resolutions for the next diocesan convention.


Sept. 9 --- Standing Committee met and approved the six proposed resolutions for the next convention. All alter the basic documents of the diocese: constitution, canons, and corporate charter. Resolutions published.


Sept. 15-19---Lawrence in Phoenix AZ for House of Bishops meeting.


Sept. 22 --- Episcopal Forum sent a letter to the Executive Council and to each member of the HOB asking for an investigation of Lawrence.

Sept. 23 --- Lawrence sent a letter refuting all charges made by Forum.

Sept. 30-Oct. 7 --- Lawrence in Cairo, Egypt to address the Diocese of Egypt... in Cairo strengthening his ties with conservative Anglican Bishop Mouneer Anis (Egypt and North Africa and the Horn of Africa).

Oct. 13 --- Lawrence sent a letter to PB. PB sent back an e-mail.

Oct. 14 --- Lawrence sent an e-mail to PB and drafted a letter to her that he did not send.

Oct. 15 --- Reconvened Diocesan Convention passed six resolutions amending the DSC constitution. These assert the independent self-rule of DSC and removed accession to the canons of TEC. The Dennis Canon was removed from the DSC Constitution and Canons. The corporate charter was amended to drop TEC.


Oct. 19 --- DSC officially amended its charter with the state of SC to remove all references to the Episcopal Church.


Oct. 21 --- DSC amended its Bylaws: -Standing Committee to be known as "Board of Directors"; Lawrence is the President of the Corporation; Directors have sole authority to choose a bishop; only Directors can remove any members of the Board; Lawrence can be removed only by unanimous vote of the Board. (see Dec. 16)

Nov. 9---Episcopal Forum sent a letter to the Province IV bishops appealing for help in defending TEC in DSC.

Nov. 15-16 --- Lawrence attended meeting of Communion Partner bishops, a conservative league, in Orlando.

Nov, 18-19---Lawrence attends Province IV bishops' meeting in Miami FL.

Dec. 16 --- DSC amended its Bylaws: Board of Directors (Standing Committee) have sole authority to determine identity and authority of the Bishop; Board may make an employment contract with the Bishop (see Feb. 1, 2011); Bishop can be removed only by unanimous vote of the Board; Bishop's employment contract may be terminated only by unanimous vote of the Board and the calling of a special convention of the diocese where two-thirds of both orders approve the termination.

2011

  


Feb. 1 --- Bishop's Employment Agreement. Standing Committee made agreement to employ Lawrence as bishop and/or chief executive officer in perpetuity and regardless of his status as bishop. Could be terminated only by death, total disability, Lawrence's request, or the terms of the Bylaws (see Dec. 16, 2010). Salary set at base $121,170 plus family medical insurance, annual annuity of $10,000, retirement contribution equal to 18% of income, and $35,000 travel (near $200,000 package). If he were removed as bishop his employment would continue as chief executive officer of the diocese. [Entered as Exhibit DSC-29, circuit court trial, July 8, 2014].


Feb. 18-19 --- DSC convention passed a second time two resolutions from the Oct. convention removing accession to the Canons of TEC and removing "annual" before "convention."


Feb. 19 --- Lawrence meets with Standing Committee.


Mar. 1 --- Lawrence complained to DSC Standing Committee about upcoming Episcopal Forum meeting and its "false statements and misrepresentations."


Mar. 10 ---Episcopal Forum held "Enthusiastically Episcopalian: conference.

Mar. 18-19---Lawrence in Springfield IL for the consecration of Bp. Daniel Martins.

Mar. 28-29 --- Lawrence attended HOB meeting, Kanuga NC and discussed the pending Anglican Covenant, a cause he strongly advocated.

May 13---Lawrence in Ambridge PA for Trinity School for Ministry Board of Trustees meeting.

May 25 --- Melinda Lucka wrote to PB and Executive Council of TEC outlining charges against Lawrence.

June 2 --- Lawrence reads book by Robert Gagnon, The Bible and Homosexual Practice.

June 6-8 --- Lawrence attends meeting of Province IV bishops, Kanuga NC and makes talk he entitles "Sex and Salvation."

July 1 --- Title IV revisions to the TEC Constitution and Canons became effective. New Disciplinary Board for Bishops established (10 bishops, 4 priests or deacons, 4 laypersons).

Aug. --- Executive Council of TEC informed Lawrence that votes of DSC to override the C and C of TEC were null and void (see June 11-14, 2007).

Sept. 26-27---Lawrence in Washington DC for China-USA Church Leaders Forum.

Sept. 28 --- Lawrence sent letter rejecting the Executive Council's ruling.

Sept. 29 ---Lawrence was informed by the President of the Disciplinary Board for Bishops (Rt. Rev. Dorsey Henderson, Jr., former bishop of Upper SC) that he was being investigated on charges of abandonment of communion. Committee collected 63-page document of evidence against Lawrence. 12 allegations.

Sept. 30 --- Josephine Hicks, attorney for the DBB wrote to the Standing Committee of DSC requesting documents.

Oct. 4 --- Lawrence met with Standing Committee, 11:30-4:00.

Oct. 7 --- Wade Logan, Chancellor of DSC, wrote to Hicks challenging her credentials.

Oct. 11 --- Lawrence held meeting of DSC clergy.

Oct. 14 --- Hicks recused herself from the case. Replaced by Jack W. Burtch.

Oct. 21 --- Convention of Diocese of Upper South Carolina passed a resolution calling on the PB and Lawrence to meet.

Oct. 24 --- Bp Waldo, of Upper SC, met with Lawrence in Columbia SC to deliver the resolution.

Nov. 1 --- Lawrence meets with Standing Committee, 10:30-4:00. The SC unanimously voted to call a special convention of DSC within 30 days of any action of TEC against Lawrence. The purpose of the convention would be to disassociate from TEC.

Nov. 2 --- Bp. Waldo, of Upper SC, met with the PB in NYC.

Nov. 15 --- Lawrence announced he had issued quitclaim deeds to all parishes in DSC. Logan sent letters to parishes on Nov. 16.

Nov. 22 --- DBB met by conference call.

Nov. 28 ---DBB announced that it could not certify that Lawrence had abandoned the communion.

Nov. 29-Dec. 1 --- Provincial bishops met and discussed the quitclaim deeds. Lawrence did not attend.

Dec. 5 --- Bp Clifton Daniel, of East Carolina, wrote to Lawrence asking for a meeting.

Dec. 6 --- Lawrence met with Standing Committee, 10:30-5:00.

Dec. 9 --- Standing Committee of DSC sent a letter to Daniel challenging his right to "interfere" in DSC.

Dec. 14 --- 6 bishops met with Lawrence in Charleston to discuss the quitclaim deeds, 1:00-3:30 p.m. No outcome.

2012

  
Jan. 10 --- Standing Committee met 10:30-3:30.


Jan. 14 --- Church Pension Fund presentation 10:00-4:30.


Feb. 2 --- Diocesan Council met 10:30-1:15; Deans met 1:15-3:45.


Feb. 7 --- Standing Committee met 10:30-4:15.


Feb. 8-11, Lawrence in Virginia to meet with students and faculty of Virginia Theological Seminary.


Feb. 19-23 --- Lawrence in Pennsylvania to visit Trinity School for Ministry.


March 10 ---at the annual DSC convention Bp Lawrence criticized TEC on issues of "Fatherhood of God, the Uniqueness of Christ, liturgical innovations, the ordination of women, the blessing of same-sex unions, communion of the unbaptized," but emphasized "The possible departure from Christian Teaching on Marriage is the most disconcerting of all." Resolution passed: ..."we commit ourselves to the defense of Christian marriage as it has been traditionally understood..."


Mar. 13 --- Lawrence in Toronto, Canada, as guest of Ephraim Radner.


Mar. 15-19 --- Lawrence in Camp Allen TX for House of Bishops.


Mar. 21-24 --- Lawrence in Orlando for consecration of Greg Brewer as new bishop of Central Florida.


Mar. 23 --- Melinda Lucka, an attorney in Charleston, sent a letter of Complaint against the Rt. Rev. Mark Lawrence to the Rt. Rev. F. Clayton Matthews, Bishop for Pastoral Development, of TEC, charging Lawrence had operated DSC in violation of the canons of TEC, specifically Title IV, Canons 3 and 4. This Complaint was advanced to the Disciplinary Board for Bishops. It was signed by: Robert R. Black, Barbara G. Mann, David W. Mann, Robert B. Pinkerton, Mrs. Benjamin Bosworth Smith, the Rev. Colton M. Smith, III, John Wilder, Virginia C. Wilder, Eleanor B. Koets, John Kwist, Margaret S. Kwist, M. Jaquelin Simons, Patricia P. Riley, Thomas W. Riley, Charles G. Carpenter, Margaret A. Carpenter, Frances L. Elmore, Cynthia L. Harding, Flint Harding III, Dolores J. Miller, Warren Mesereau, Eleanor Horres, and the Rev. Roger W. Smith. This letter became the basis for the action of the DBB; on Sept. 18 the DBB voted to charge Lawrence with abandonment of communion.


Mar. 26-27 --- Standing Committee held retreat at Camp St. Christopher.


April 23-27 --- Lawrence attended GAFCON Leaders Conference in London; Lawrence addressed the Guildford Diocesan Evangelical Fellowship of the Church of England Evangelical Council on Apr. 25.


May 1 --- Standing Committee met 10:00-3:00; directed delegates to GC to: file a minority report, refrain from worship, and walk out immediately after the passage of the same-sex blessing rites. Committee also discussed a booklet by Greg Snyder, "When Should We Divide?"


May 2 --- Lawrence met with deputies to General Convention, 2:00-4:15.


May 22-25 --- Lawrence traveled to Wisconsin for Nashotah House meetings.


June 5-7 --- Lawrence attended the Province IV bishops' meeting at Kanuga, NC.


June 9 --- Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) named Steve Wood, rector of St. Andrew's, Mt. Pleasant, as bishop of its Diocese of the Carolinas.


June 11 --- Lawrence in Atlanta for Summit on Immigration.


June 15 --- Standing Committee of DSC issued statement condemning the upcoming blessing of same-gender unions in the GC.


June 17-22 --- Lawrence took vacation to mountains of VA and TN.


June 26 --- Lawrence met with deputies to General Convention, 1:00-3:00.


June 30 --- TEC started disciplinary proceedings against 9 bishops including former SC Bp Salmon for their role in supporting court actions against TEC in the case of Ft. Worth.


July 3 --- Lawrence in Indianapolis for General Convention.

July 10 --- DSC delegates spoke in opposition to Resolution AO49, the authorizing of liturgy for the blessing of same gender unions. Resolution adopted. The rite was to be optional at the discretion of the diocesan bishop.

July 11 --- Lawrence and 5 DSC delegates walk out of GC. 2 remain. 12 bishops drew up a declaration condemning the passage of the same-sex blessing resolution; Salmon and Skilton signed, Lawrence did not.


July 12 --- Lawrence returned to Charleston.


July 13 --- Lawrence wrote letter to the diocese.


July 15 --- Lawrence's letter was to be read in all churches in DSC. Condemned CO29, AO49, DO02, DO19 (the first deals with communion, the others with rights for homosexuals and transgendered persons).


July 16 --- Lawrence met Council of Advice (Standing Committee), 1:00-5:30.


July 17 --- Lawrence met Standing Committee, 10:30-1:30.


July 18 --- Lawrence met deans, 1:15-3:45.


July 25 --- Lawrence met with clergy of DSC at St. Paul's of Summerville, 1:00-4:15. He reported that he told the House of Bishops in executive session at the GC that he could no longer in good conscience continue in the convention and that he had grave doubts that he could continue as a bishop in the Episcopal Church. He told the clergy that TEC had crossed a line he could not cross, and announced a few weeks absence "on mountaintops and in deserts." Lawrence thus made it clear to the clergy that in all probability he would not continue in TEC.


July 30-August 15 --- Lawrence on vacation in California, Utah, Colorado, Nevada in "discernment for diocese and my ministry."


Aug. 21 --- Lawrence met with DSC Standing Committee, 10:30-3:00 and with his lawyers 3:00-4:00. Lawrence presented a plan of action. The Committee unanimously approved it. No other information was revealed at the time. All of the meetings of the bishop and his executive committees between August 21 and Oct. 18 were private and the proceedings were kept secret except for selected leaks. The decisions of the committees were not revealed to the public, even to the clergy of the DSC, before Oct. 19. Thus by all appearances the move to "disassociate" from TEC came in August and September from Lawrence himself. It was approved by the small diocesan leadership at the top. No one else was consulted at the time.


----- Members of the Standing Committee ("Board of Directors") 2012-13: Rev. Paul Fuener, Chair; Clergy: John Barr, Tripp Jeffords, Greg Snyder, Ken Weldon, Andrew O'Dell; Laity: Reid Boylston, Ed Mitman, Elizabeth Pennewill, Bill Lyles, Ann Hester Willis, Suzanne Schwank.


Aug. 22 --- Lawrence met deans, 1:30-4:00, apparently to give them the Standing Committee's resolution.


Aug. 25 --- Lawrence attended, but did not participate in, the consecration of Steve Wood as bishop of the ACNA Diocese of the Carolinas.


Aug. 27 --- Lawrence and Wade Logan met in Columbia SC with Bishop Waldo and Belton Ziegler. Lawrence agreed to talk with the PB. Afterwards, Waldo arranged a meeting of Lawrence and Waldo with the PB on Oct. 3. Lawrence did not tell Waldo about the "secret plan" of Aug. 21.


Aug. 28 --- Lawrence met the Diocesan Council, 10:30-2:00.


Sept. 9 --- Cathedral church of St. Luke and St. Paul voted 55-10 to break from TEC.


Sept. 13 --- Lawrence met Board of Trustees, 11:00-2:00.


Sept. 18 --- the DBB certified that Lawrence had abandoned the communion of TEC on three counts: 1-having presided over a diocesan convention , Oct. 10, 2010, that voted to remove accession to the canons of TEC, 2-having amended the corporate charter on Oct. 19, 2011 to remove reference to the Episcopal Church, and 3-having issued quit claim deeds he showed open renunciation of the Episcopal Church.


Sept. 18 --- Lawrence in conference with Logan and Runyan; Lawrence met Standing Committee; Standing Committee requested of Lawrence an interpretation of Canon XXXVII, concerning right of diocese to secede from TEC [Lawrence presented a response to SC on Oct. 2]. Lawrence announced to Committee suspension of ordinations "because of the vow to conform to the doctrine, discipline, and worship of the Episcopal Church."


Sept. 19 --- Lawrence met Bishop Waldo, 11:00-1:15, had lunch in Waldo's home. Lawrence did not reveal his secret plan to Waldo.


Sept. 22 --- Lawrence issued a statement saying he and Standing Committee were in agreement on a plan of action. No other information was released to the clergy or the general public.


Sept. 27-30 --- Lawrence in Fort Worth TX to lead a retreat.


Oct. 2 - a.m. --- Lawrence met his lawyers and Standing Committee 9:30-12:30. Lawrence presented a 16-page response to questions from standing committee of Sept. 18: he ruled DSC is sovereign and free to secede from TEC. The Committee unanimously voted in secret session to leave TEC if any action were taken by TEC against Lawrence. The DSC "withdraws its accession to the Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church and disaffiliates with the Episcopal Church by withdrawing its membership from the Episcopal Church. The decision shall be effective immediately upon the taking of any action of any kind by any representative of the Episcopal Church against The Bishop..." This was the action that prompted Lawrence's rejection of TEC measures on Oct. 17.


Oct. 2 - p.m. --- Lawrence traveled to NYC.


Oct. 3 --- 10:00 PB met with Waldo and Lawrence in NYC. Lawrence did not reveal the Standing Committee resolution to the other two [they learned of it on Oct. 17]. Discussed "creative solutions" to a way forward. No specific proposal. Lawrence flew to Pittsburgh in the evening.


Oct. 4-5 --- Lawrence in Pennsylvania for Trinity School for Ministry board meeting. He returned to Charleston on the evening of the 5th.


Oct. 9 --- PB asks for private meeting with Lawrence in Atlanta on Oct. 13. On Oct. 10 Lawrence rejected the offer of the meeting. (Nick Zeigler, former Chancellor of DSC, died on Oct. 8. His funeral was on Thursday, Oct. 11 at St. John's of Florence, Lawrence participating. Lawrence told an assembly at St. John's on Oct. 27 [I was present] that Zeigler's death was "providential" because it gave him a reason to decline the proposed meeting with the PB.)  Thus, the final in-person meeting of Lawrence and PB was on Oct. 3.


Oct. 10 --- Lawrence met Council of Advice (Standing Committee), 10:00-12:45.


Oct. 10 --- PB received a certification from DBB on Lawrence.


Oct. 11 --- Lawrence in Florence for funeral of Nick Ziegler.


Oct. 11 --- PB requested a phone call with Lawrence and chancellor of DSC Oct. 15-17.


Oct. 15 --- 12:00 p.m., Lawrence in conference call with Presiding Bishop, the Disciplinary Board for Bishops, and Wade Logan. PB placed a restriction on the exercise of ministry by Lawrence. Hard copies sent. PB asked this to be kept confidential and she wanted another meeting. This restriction temporarily removed Lawrence from all ministry in TEC. He would have 60 days in which to make a written appeal to the PB who could remove the restrictions at her discretion; or he would be formally tried by the HOB at its next meeting, in March 2013. A meeting of PB was to be held with Lawrence, Waldo and their chancellors in NYC on Oct. 22. Lawrence immediately ignored all that the PB had said.

By rejecting the PB's order, Lawrence abandoned his consecration vow to conform to the discipline of TEC.
--- 1:30 p.m., Lawrence held a conference call with the Council of Advice (Standing Committee), ending confidentiality. Apparently Logan, Lawrence and Standing Committee agreed that the diocese automatically disassociated from TEC under terms of the resolution of Oct. 2. That afternoon proceeded with bishop's duties.


Oct. 16 --- Lawrence met deans 10:30-12:30, and Council of Advice (Standing Committee), 2:00-6:30.


Oct. 17 --- In phone call, Lawrence told PB that confidentiality was impossible because of previous secret resolutions of the Standing Committee; announced to PB the resolution's "disassociation" of the diocese from TEC retroactive to noon on Monday October 15, the moment of the "restriction." Thus, Oct. 15 was the time of the schism. Since Lawrence remained as bishop of the "disassociated" diocese, he made a de facto renunciation to the PB on Oct. 17 of all ties to the Episcopal Church as of Oct. 15. He did not make a written renunciation.
p.m.--- Lawrence released to the public the news of the "disassociation" of DSC from TEC. Press release from the DSC office announced the call of a special convention to be held November 17, St. Philip's, Charleston "for relevant constitutional and/or canonical changes."


---News of Disciplinary Board action and of the purported disassociation first publicly announced, posted on major Internet outlets. 
---The names of the members of the committee making the complaint (see Mar. 23) to DBB were revealed by Lucka.


Oct. 19 --- Lawrence met with clergy of DSC and informed them of the restriction of the PB, which he called irrelevant, and the previously made secret resolution of the Standing Committee that had automatically severed ties of DSC and TEC. He announced to the clergy that the DSC had already separated from TEC. Thus, the clergy had had no input into the decision to leave TEC. He also said he had cancelled a scheduled meeting with the PB on Oct. 22 (see Oct. 15).


Oct. 20 --- the Rev. Kendall Harmon, Canon Theologian of DSC, issued a press release for DSC declaring "The Diocese of South Carolina is no longer part of TEC." 
---3:45, Lawrence spoke by phone with PB.
--- The Rev. Canon James B. Lewis released a news report that the committee of 14 represented the Board of the Episcopal Forum. Thus, he asserted, the "attack" on Bp Lawrence was initiated and directed by the Forum. This was not correct.


Oct, 22 --- Lawrence held a conference call with Council of Advice (Standing Committee).
--- 1:00 Lawrence spoke by phone with the PB.


Oct. 25 --- Letter of support for Lawrence from the Chair and the Secretary of the Global South Primates Steering Committee, the Most Rev. Mouneer Hanna Anis and the Most Rev. Ian Ernest.


Oct. 26 --- Representatives of PB met with a group of laypeople and clergy to discuss steps for a Steering Committee to reorganize the ongoing TEC diocese of SC. Tisdale was leader in setting up the Committee.


Oct. 27 --- Lawrence held a "forum" at St. John's of Florence where he announced "I am no longer an Episcopalian" and went on to say "I am a bishop in the one holy Catholic, and Apostolic Church," therefore entitled to conduct services. He declared he was in an all-out war with TEC. Afterwards, he presided at the altar and conducted a confirmation in disregard of his "restriction.'. [I was present.]


Oct. 29 --- DSC Standing Committee (meeting as Board of Directors) amended the Bylaws of the Corporation (see Dec. 16, 2010). Ruled out any "outside influence" (TEC) over the Board.


Nov. 6 --- 10:30-4:00, Lawrence met Standing Committee. Committee directed Runyan to take all legal measures necessary to "protect" the diocese and its property.


Nov. 7-9 --- Lawrence at clergy conference, Camp St. Christopher.


Nov. 7 --- an e-mail was sent to most of the clergy of DSC announcing a Clergy Day for the Diocese" at Church of the Holy Communion, Charleston. It used the seal and names of the DSC. Retired Bp vonRosenberg (vonR) [retired Bp of East Tenn] was to attend the meeting as "advisor."


Nov. 8 ---DSC office issued a statement denouncing the Nov. 7 e-mail. Holy Communion declined to host the meeting.
DSC filed petition in Office of Patents and Trademarks in the U.S. Department of Commerce to trademark the titles of Diocese of South Carolina. Later dropped.

Nov. 9 --- TEC issued on "Perspectives." a "Fact Sheet: The Diocese of South Carolina."

Nov. 11 --- Several newspapers published a letter from the Steering Committee of the ongoing Episcopal diocese. Members of the committee:
Hillery P. Douglas, Chair; Erin P.Bailey, Secretary; Rev. James E.Taylor, Treasurer; Holly H. Behre, William P. Baldwin, Dr. Charles C. Greer, Lonnie Hamilton III, Margaret S. Kwist, Rev. Richard C. Lindsey, Rebecca S. Lovelace, Rev. Wilmot T. Merchant II, John D. Sands, Rev. Calhoun Walpole, Virginia C. Wilder.

Nov. 14 --- DSC published in newspapers an open letter from Lawrence, co-signed by 69 clergy denouncing TEC and calling meeting of Nov. 17.

Nov. 15 ---Conservative Bp Daniel Martins, of Springfield, called on Lawrence to "step back from the brink."
PB issued a pastoral letter "to the saints in South Carolina." She declared that a diocese could not leave TEC "by its own action," that the clergy would be bound by the canons, and TEC would support the ongoing diocese.
Continuing diocese held a clergy day at St. Mark's, Charleston, presided over by vonR. 60-70 in attendance.

Nov. 17 --- special convention of DSC, St. Philip's, Charleston. 42 parishes and 12 missions were represented by 170 lay delegates. Lawrence announced DSC had withdrawn from TEC but remained "an extra-provincial diocese" in the Anglican Communion. Three resolutions passed   1-ended all ties to TEC and reaffirmed Lawrence as bishop,  2-changed diocesan constitution to remove all references to TEC,  3-likewise amended the canons of the DSC.


Nov. 20 --- DSC Standing Committee passed resolution directing Runyan to file a lawsuit against TEC.


Nov. 27 --- Lawrence met Board of Trustees.
--- The Anglican Communion Institute, a conservative think tank strongly critical of TEC, sent an open letter to the bishops of TEC denouncing the PB and leadership of TEC while defending Lawrence.


Nov. 28 --- Lawrence officiated at the funeral of Rt. Rev. Haynsworth in chapel of Bishop Gadsden (Church retirement home, James Island). Bp Allison gave eulogy. By Skilton attended. By Salmon did not attend.


Nov. 30 --- Lawrence held conference calls with Trustees and Council of Advice (Standing Committee).


Dec. 4 --- Lawrence met Standing Committee, 10:30-2:30.


Dec. 5 --- 12:45 p.m., PB informed Lawrence by phone that she had accepted his renunciation of the ordained ministry in TEC and had released him from all Holy Orders in TEC effective immediately. She issued an official "Release and Removal." This was based on Lawrence's actions and words of Nov. 17. She had consulted with all the heads of the provinces of TEC and found a majority vote among them to support the decision. In spite of official revocation of ordination as a bishop, Lawrence and DSC insisted Lawrence was still a bishop, and the only legitimate bishop of DSC.
--- Lawrence issued a letter to DSC rejecting the PB's assertions as "superfluous" and proclaiming continued function as the bishop of DSC.


Dec. 8 --- the ongoing diocese announced a special convention on Jan. 26 at Grace Episcopal Church, Charleston, to elect a provisional bishop. The PB was to attend.


Dec. 11-16 ---Lawrence in CA (Lawrence's mother died on Dec. 12).


Dec. 19 --- PB announced the call of the special convention of the diocese on Jan. 26, 2013.


Dec. 20 --- DSC issued a statement denouncing the PB's use of term "Diocese of South Carolina" and claimed ownership of the term.


Dec. 27 --- "Gay Christian Movement Watch, a Blog Upholding Biblical Standards of Sexuality" named Lawrence to its "12 Heroes of the Faith" list for 2012 along with the likes of Don Cathy, owner of Chick-fil-A.

2013

  
Jan. 3 --- Lawrence reported to Standing Committee that LARCUM (consortium of Lutheran, Anglican, Roman Catholic, and Methodist bishops in SC) had told L he could not read scripture or say prayers in their meetings. L announced he would not attend. Bishop vonR was later recognized by LARCUM.


Jan 4 --- DSC filed suit in state Circuit Court (The Court of Common Pleas for the First Judicial Circuit), in St. George, Dorchester County, against TEC claiming ownership of all official titles and seal and property. Co-signed by 17 parishes. This was the first lawsuit: DSC sued TEC.

Jan. 4 --- DSC Trustees issued new Bylaws naming Mark J. Lawrence personally (rather than as bishop) as the President of the corporation (see Mar. 17, 2010).

Jan. 8 --- The Living Church magazine announced that a petition was online asking for non-litigious resolution of the problem in SC. It called for 1,000 signatures. Two months later, 220 had signed.

Jan. 10 --- ongoing Episcopal Church diocese announced the nomination of vonR as provisional bishop to be elected by the special convention of Jab. 26.

Jan. 22 --- DSC entered an Amended Complaint in the Circuit Court (see Jan. 4) adding 15 parishes and St. Andrew's of Mt. Pleasant as plaintiffs. This brought the number of parishes participating to 32.

Jan. 23 --- Circuit Judge Diane S. Goodstein issued ex parte a Temporary Restraining Order barring anyone from using official names of the DSC except Lawrence and 24 others. Hearing set for Feb. 1. The Order was personally served to TEC faithful:   George Hawkins, Virginia Wilder, Callie Walpole, Lonnie Hamilton, James E. Taylor, Erin Hoyle, Barbara Mann, Melinda Lucka, Charles vonRosenberg, John Buchanan, Steve Skardon, and Michael Wright.

Jan. 25-26 --- Visit of the PB. Jan. 25, Special Convention of "The Episcopal Church in South Carolina" at Grace Episcopal Church, Charleston.
Special Convention [I attended]:
Festival Choral Eucharist with the PB as Celebrant and Preacher [sermon followed by loud protests from Lawrence's supporters who claimed she maligned him].
The election and investiture of the Bishop Provisional, vonR.
Election of the Standing Committee, 6 clergy and 6 lay (Revs. Richard Lindsey, David Williams, Colton Smith, J. Michael A. Wright, Wilmot T. Merchant II, Calhoun Walpole;  Virginia C. Wilder, Melinda A. Lucka, Hillery P.Douglas (Chair), Rebecca Lovelace, Erin Elizabeth Bailey, Lonnie Hamilton III).
Election of the Diocesan Council, 6 clergy and 6 lay (Revs. Mark Brinkman, George Tompkins, Roy Hills, Wil Keith, Jeff Richardson, John Zahl, Nancy Bailey, Holly Behre, Alesia Rico Flores, Mary Ann Foy, Dr, Charles Geer, Barbara Mann).

Jan. 31 --- Judge Goodstein issued a Temporary Injunction extending the Jan. 23rd Temporary Restraining Order indefinitely. Both parties had agreed to this earlier in the day. vonR has until April 4 to respond. The Injunction was personally served to:  Charles vonRosenberg, Melinda Lucka, and Michael Wright.

Feb.-Mar. --- about 11 parishes and missions remained in "discernment" as to which of the two bishops to follow. Typically both bishops visited, separately, the local churches. Old St. Andrew's was one. It printed a 15-page transcript of Lawrence's remarks. It voted 189-64 on Feb. 24 to follow Lawrence.

Feb. 27 --- the DSC lawsuit of Jan. 4 was amended to include The Episcopal Church in South Carolina(ECSC) as a defendant. TEC and ECSC have until April 4 to respond. This is the Second Amended Complaint (Jan. 4 and Jan. 22). It added 3 parishes as plaintiffs for a total of 35, including the non-DSC parish of St. Andrew's, Mt. Pleasant. The Second Amended Complaint was personally served to:  Thomas Tisdale, Charles vonRosenberg, and Virginia Wilder.

March 5 --- vonR filed suit ("Complaint") in the federal court in Charleston (United States District Court for the District of South Carolina, Charleston Division) against Lawrence asking the court to declare vonR has authority to act as bishop of the Diocese of South Carolina and not Lawrence. The Complaint is 21 pages. (See Sept. 19, 2019)

March 7 --- vonR filed a motion for a preliminary injunction (Plaintiff's Motion for a Preliminary Injunction) with the U.S. District Court in Charleston against Lawrence (see also Mar. 5). Court papers totaled 276 pages. Lawrence has until Mar. 25 to respond. Lawrence asked to have until April 13 to respond. The Motion asked for an injunction to prevent Lawrence from acting as the bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina.

Mar. 8 --- TEC issued a press release that an Accord had been reached in the matter of Conciliation involving the dioceses of Fort Worth and Quincy. Salmon was one of the nine bishops who signed the Accord.

March 8-9 --- annual convention of ECSC at Grace Episcopal Church, Charleston. 42 clergy present, 18 parishes, 12 missions, 5 worshipping communities. St. Mark's Chapel, Port Royal, was admitted as a mission. The Episcopal Church Executive Council approved grant up to $185,000 to the diocese. The Executive Council granted a line of credit of $250,000. Resolutions to return accession to TEC C and C.

March 8-9 --- annual convention of DSC, in Florence. 35 parishes and 13 missions present; 2 worshipping communities (North Charleston and North Myrtle Beach). Preacher at Mar. 8 Eucharist was the Rt. Rev. Keith Ackerman, Bishop Vicar of the [Anglican] Diocese of Quincy. Resolutions to remove all accession to TEC C and C and to support "Anglicans for Life," an anti-abortion group.


--- DSC Standing Committee (meeting as Board of Directors) 2013-14: Rev. Greg Snyder, Chair; Clergy: Shay Gaillard, Tripp Jeffords, Arthur Jenkins, Andrew O'Dell, Ken Weldon; Laity: Dorothy Bowen, Frank Kirk, Ed Mitman, Elizabeth Pennewill, Suzanne Schwank, Bill Lyles.


March 19 --- DSC filed a "Motion for Partial Summary Judgment" in the Court of Common Pleas for the First Judicial Circuit (state, County of Dorchester). This was a "move for partial summary judgment that the control of The Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina...is in its duly elected and authorized Board of Directors all as alleged in Plaintiff's Second Amended Complaint." Served to Tisdale, vonR, and Virginia Wilder. [Note-there has been no response to this motion. Apparently pending.]

DSC filed a "Motion for Contempt on Behalf of the Plaintiffs the Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina, and the Trustees of the Protestant Episcopal Church in South Carolina, a South Carolina Corporate Body," a move for a "citation of contempt" against TEC, ECSC, and "persons in active concert or participation with them" [these persons were not enumerated]. [Note-there has been no response to this motion. Apparently pending.]

March 28 --- TEC filed "Answer and Counterclaims of the Episcopal Church to Second Amended Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief," in the Court of Common Pleas for the First Judicial Circuit (state court, Dorchester County). ECSC filed "Answer, Affirmative Defenses, and Counterclaims of the Episcopal Church in South Carolina to Second Amended Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief" in the same court.

March 28 --- Lawrence filed "Motion to Dismiss or in the Alternative to Abstain or Stay Proceedings" and "Defendant Lawrence's Memorandum in Support of his Motion to Dismiss or in the Alternative to Abstain or Stay Proceedings" in the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina Charleston Division. Lawrence claimed the right of state jurisdiction. (See Mar. 5 and 7, 2013).

April 3 --- ECSC filed "Notice of Removal" from the Court of Common Pleas, County of Dorchester, First Judicial Circuit, State of South Carolina to United States District Court, District of South Carolina (Charleston).

April 7 --- vonR began sending out letters to the canonically resident clergy of the old Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina asking for clarification of each one's allegiance and gives a two-week period for response. vonR offered to meet with each of the clergy persons. The majority of the recipients who had adhered to Lawrence refused to respond to the letters.

April 10 --- the Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina (DSC) and co-plaintiffs filed "Plaintiffs' Motion to Remand" and "Plaintiffs' Memorandum of Law in Support of Motion to Remand" in U.S. District Court. Lawrence argued that this is a property dispute and must properly be decided in state court. (See Mar. 5 and 7, 2013).


April 16 --- DSC Standing Committee resolved to compose a letter for all clergy to return to vonR as a mutual response (see April 7).


April 22 --- vonR filed "Reply to Defendant's Response to Plaintiff's Motion for a Preliminary Injunction" in the U.S. District Court. (See Apr. 10, 2013).

April 29 --- ECSC filed "Defendant's Response to Plaintiff's Motion to Remand" in the U.S. District Court arguing in favor of First Amendment protection.

June 6 --- Hearing was held in U.S. District Court, in Charleston, by Judge C. Weston Houck on the issue of whether the court lawsuits should be continued in the U.S. District Court (federal) or in the Circuit Court (state). In the 45-minute hearing, Houck heard arguments from the two sides and asked questions of the lawyers. vonR was present with four lawyers. Lawrence was present with 25-30 lawyers. Lawrence's lawyers, primarily Alan Runyan, argued that the issue was a local one that should be decided by state court under "neutral principles of law." This implied the matter was essentially about ownership of properties. Presumably this would lean to the Lawrence side. vonR's lawyers argued the issue was a federal one as a national religious organization claimed first amendment rights to manage its own affairs. This implied the matter was essentially about the rights of an hierarchical church. Presumably this would lean to the vonR side. Houck concluded that he expected to provide a written ruling within about a week.

June 10 --- Judge Houck issued an Order granting the Plaintiff's (Lawrence) motion (of March 28) to remand the lawsuit to the Circuit (state) court. Houck rejected vonR's claim of a First Amendment issue and cited the All Saints Waccamaw (All Saints, Pawleys Island) ruling of 2009 applying "neutral principles" regarding religious denominational property disputes. The Order means that the adjudication will proceed in the Circuit (state) court where the DSC side expects to have the advantage.

June 10 --- The Executive Council of TEC voted to respond to a request from ECSC and expand the credit line to ECSC by $300,000 to a total of $550,000 by the end of 2013. Council members also asked the presiding officers to appoint a covenant committee to report on the work of ECSC to the council's Joint Steering Committee on Local Ministry and Mission. The Council also allocated an additional $785,000 for San Joaquin.

June --- Hearing set in Court of Common Pleas, First Judicial Circuit (Dorchester County, Judge Diane Goodstein) for July 11, 2013. Five actions were pending before Goodstein at this point:
1-DSC and 35 parishes v. TEC and ECSC for legal status as Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina (see Jan. 4).
2-DSC "Motion for Partial Summary Judgment..." (see Mar. 19).
3-DSC "Motion for Contempt..." v. TEC, ECSC, and "persons in active concert..." (see Mar. 19).
4-TEC "Answer and Counterclaims..." (see Mar. 28).
5-ECSC "Answer, Affirmative Defenses..." (see Mar. 28).

June --- Hearing set in U.S. District Court (Judge C. Weston Houck) for August 8, 2013. Two actions were pending before Houck:
1-vonR v Lawrence for legal right as bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina (see Mar. 5).
2-vonR "Motion for a Preliminary Injunction..." v Lawrence to prevent Lawrence from acting as bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina (see Mar. 7).

June 21 --- Lawrence attended the Anglican Church in North America's Provincial Council meeting and House of Bishops meeting at Nashotah House in Wisconsin announcing "we are presently an 'extra-provincial' diocese, not in any formal or officially ecclesial way..." thus postponing indefinitely a union of DSC with ACNA or any other "Anglican" group.

June 21 --- the Standing Committee of ECSC voted to initiate action against the 103 priests and deacons of the old diocese who had not adhered to vonR. vonR then sent a Notice of Restriction on the 103 clergy. These clergy have 60 days in which to declare loyalty to the Episcopal Church and its representative vonR or be removed from the ordained ministry of TEC. Sixty days would end on August 20.

June 23 --- ECSC announced its list of "Clergy in Good Standing in The Episcopal Church in South Carolina as of June 21, 2013." The list contains names of 63 priests and 11 deacons, about one-third of the pre-schism diocese. The names include: the Rev. Ladson Mills II, a frequent critic of TEC at virtueonline.org; the Rev. Dr. Robert Munday, a former dean at Nashotah House, a rector of a DSC parish, and an assistant rector of a DSC parish. 

June 25 --- vonR issued a letter giving a Notice of Restriction on the 103 clergy of the old diocese found to have abandoned TEC.

June 26-27 --- Meeting of the bishops of TEC Province IV, the twenty dioceses in the southeastern U.S., in Charleston. Twenty-five bishops and one bishop-elect announced their intention to attend, including retired Suffrigan Bishop of SC, Skilton.

July 10 --- virtueonline.org, a conservative website, posted a copy of the June 25 letter from vonR stating that the Standing Committee of ECSC had voted to declare that 103 priests and deacons of the old diocese had abandoned the Episcopal Church. Names were listed in alphabetical order.

July 11 --- Judge Goodstein set a timetable allowing 90 days to complete written discovery and allowing 120 additional days for the taking of depositions, concluding Feb. 5, 2014. After that, a trial date will be set. Goodstein asked the two sides if they would settle with mediation. Tisdale and Beers agreed; Runyan refused.

August 8 --- Judge Houck of the U.S. District Court in Charleston heard arguments from both sides on Lawrence's March 28 motion asking the court to dismiss or to abstain from the March 5 suit of vonR against Lawrence. Houck did not hear arguments on vonR's March 7 motion against Lawrence. Houck announced he would rule in about a week on Lawrence's March 28 motion.

August 23 --- Judge Houck issued an "Order" dismissing the suits filed by vonR against Lawrence (Mar. 5 and 7) stating "the Court Declines to exercise jurisdiction over this action in deference to the pending state court action." However, the ruling left the door open for vonR to reinstate the case if the state court does not dispose of all issues involved. Houck stated in his Order that Lawrence had renounced his ordained ministry and that the Episcopal Church is hierarchical.

August 23 --- the Standing Committee of ECSC met and approved vonR's recommendation that the 103 restricted clergy be "released and removed" rather than "deposed." (Under Title IV, Canon 16 (8), Section 4 of the C and C of TEC.

August 26 ---this week, Notice of Removal letters, signed by vonR, were sent to the 103 previously restricted priests and deacons (app. 60% of old diocese).

Sept. 9 --- Lawrence met at Camp St. Christopher with bishops of four Episcopal splinter groups, ACNA, Reformed Episcopal Church, PEARUSA [Rwanda], and Diocese of the Holy Cross, all with interests, and overlapping jurisdictions in the Lowcountry. Apparently Bishop Charles Murphy, of Pawleys Island, was not present.

Sept. 16 --- vonR filed a "Motion for Reconsideration" in the U.S. District Court in Charleston asking Judge Houck to reconsider his August 23 ruling. 

Sept. 19---ECSC made a motion in Circuit Court to compel DSC to produce all correspondence between Lawrence and Alan Runyan prior to Nov. 17, 2012. (denied on Nov. 7, 2013; see below)

Sept. 30 --- vonR filed a motion to vacate the Temporary Injunction (see Jan. 21) in the Circuit Court.
 --- vonR filed a motion in Circuit Court asking for an injunction to stop DSC from using official names and marks of the Diocese of South Carolina.

Oct. 2 --- Judge Goodstein, of the Circuit Court, denied a motion of ECSC to add as defendants twenty-three persons of the Standing Committee and Trustees of DSC stating that this was not necessary and that these individuals are immune under state law from being sued.

Oct. 11 --- Judge Goodstein, of the Circuit Court, denied vonR's motions (see Sept. 30) to vacate the Temporary Injunction against ECSC and to make an injunction against DSC.

Oct. --- Lawrence attends GAFCON II conference in Nairobi, Kenya (Oct. 21-26). On Oct. 23, the Archbishop of Canterbury made a video address to the assembly defending western attitudes towards sexuality: "We all live in different contexts and the challenge overlaps but is slightly different wherever we live. We are dealing with very rapid changes of culture in the Global North and the issue of sexuality is a very important one. How we respond rightly to that - in a way that is holy, truthful, and gracious - is absolutely critical to our proclamation of the gospel." On biblical literalism, he said "It doesn't mean being unanimous, all saying exactly the same thing in exactly the same way." Both of these points are scarcely veiled criticisms of the distinctly conservative attitudes of Third World oriented GAFCON, a potential rival to the traditional Anglo-centric Lambeth conferences.

GAFCON issued two statements: GAFCON 2013: The Nairobi Communique," and "The Nairobi Commitment." These created a new administrative structure in the Anglican Communion for conservatives and reiterated their condemnation of homosexuality.

Nov. 7---Judge Diane Goodstein, of the Circuit Court issued "Order Denying the Defendant TECSC's Motion to Compel Dated September 19, 2013 (see Sept. 19 above). (See Jan. 13, 2014 for the appeal of this order.)

Nov. 25---ECSC filed a motion in the First Circuit Court of Common Pleas (state court) to have four names added as parties in the lawsuit filed by DSC (see Jan. 4) against TEC: Mark Lawrence, Jim Lewis, Jeffrey Miller, and Paul Fuener. It contained two very serious charges that could potentially change the whole trajectory of the litigation:  "In or around 2006, Lawrence made an agreement with members of the Standing and Search Committees of the Diocese to lead a scheme to withdraw the Diocese from The Episcopal Church in return for their votes electing him Bishop of the Diocese;" and "Beginning in or around 2009, the Additional Parties began executing a conspiracy to take away the Diocese's assets..." Thus, the motion holds that Lawrence and the others carried out a premeditated conspiracy to defraud the Episcopal Church and should be held liable. (Judge Goodstein denied this motion on Dec. 30. see below)

Dec. 18  ---The Rev. Thomas M. Rickenbaker made an affidavit for the Circuit Court stating that in 2005, when he was rector of St. Paul's, in Edenton, North Carolina, he was visited by the Rev. Gregory Kronz, the chair, and the Rev. Paul Feuner, a member, of the SC Bishop's Search Committee. In interviewing him for possible candidacy, he said they made it clear they wanted the new bishop to lead the diocese out of TEC and to take the property along. He rejected the idea and was dropped from consideration. Feuner disputed this claim in a Charleston Post and Courier interview of Dec. 30, 2013.

Dec. 27 --- ECSC filed in Circuit Court "TECSC's Memorandum in Support of its Motion to Join Additional Parties," 14 pages.

Dec. 30 --- DSC filed in Circuit Court "Plaintiff's Response to Defendant the Episcopal Church in South Carolina's Notice and Motion to Join Additional Parties," 14 pages.

--- Judge Goodstein, of the Circuit Court,   1-denied ECSC's motion to add four names as parties;  2-set the date of May 2, 2014, for the conclusion of the discovery phase;  3-said that July 2014 would be the earliest time she could announce a date for the trial.

2014

Jan. 9---U.S. District judge Patrick Michael Duffy ruled that the Church Insurance Company of Vermont must provide coverage for ECSC in the lawsuit brought by DSC against the Episcopal Church and then ECSC (see Jan. 4, 2013).


Jan. 13---Attorney Tisdale, for ECSC, filed "Appeal from Dorchester County, Court of Common Pleas," in the Court of Appeals, state of South Carolina (in Columbia, SC) seeking to have Judge Goodstein's order of Nov. 7, 2013, overturned. If the appeals court should agree, all correspondence between Lawrence and Runyan prior to Nov. 17, 2012 would have to be turned over to the lawyers of ECSC. (See Mar. 18; court rejected ECSC appeal.)


Jan. 14---Judge C. Weston Houck, of the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina, Charleston Division," issued an "Order denying ECSC's motion (September 16, 2013; see above) for reconsideration of Houck's ruling of August 23, 2013.


Jan. 15---DSC filed a motion in the Court of Appeals, state of South Carolina to dismiss ECSC's motion of Jan. 13. This leaves two official motions pending in the appeals court 1-ECSC's motion to overturn Goodstein's ruling of Nov. 7, and 2-DSC motion to dismiss ECSC's motion.


Jan. 17---Judge Goodstein, of the circuit court, denied a request from the DSC lawyers to proceed with the taking of depositions from persons on the pro-ECSC side pending a ruling from the appeals court (see Jan. 13).


Jan. 24---ECSC filed a response to the DSC motion of Jan. 15 in the Court of Appeals.


Feb. 5---ECSC filed an appeal of Judge Houck's Jan. 14 ruling in which he refused to reconsider his decision of Aug. 23, 2013. It was filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. ECSC made the original lawsuit in the U.S. court on March 5, 2013 (vonRosenberg v. Lawrence).


Feb. 6---DSC asked the SC Supreme Court to intervene in ECSC's appeal to the SC Court of Appeals. DSC claims that Judge Goodstein's ruling is "unappealable" and that ECSC is only using delaying tactics. ECSC did not oppose this motion.


Feb. 21-22 --- ECSC held its annual diocesan convention at All Saints, Hilton Head. Delegates voted again to restore all ties to TEC. Five missions were admitted into union with the diocese: The Episcopal Church on Edisto, Good Shepherd of Summerville, St. Anne's of Conway, St. Catherine's of Florence, and St. Francis of Charleston (West Ashley).


Mar. 5 --- U.S. District Judge Patrick Duffy denied a motion to reconsider his Jan. 9 ruling.


Mar. 15 --- DSC held its annual convention at Christ Church, Mt. Pleasant. Resolutions offered: R-1, join Global Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans and affirm the Jerusalem Declaration of 2008; R-2, Bishop will appoint a discernment committee to recommend an affiliation; R-3, Global South oversight council; C-1, standards for clergy; C-2, standards of parish membership; C-3, the rector has authority over the parish, including property; C-4, on removal of parishes and missions from union with DSC; C-5, worship by TEC service books only; C-6, standards for lay pensions. All passed unanimously or nearly so except for C-3 that gave the rector control of the property. It was tabled, that is, withheld from vote.


Mar. 18 --- The SC Court of Appeals rejected ECSC's motion of appeal entered on Jan. 13, 2014. Soon thereafter, DSC asked Judge Goodstein to lift her "stay" order of Jan. 17. Goodstein did not respond.
--- DSC began issuing subpoenas "commanding" depositions from at least 14 persons on the ECSC side: Holly Behre, Robert Black, Bishop John C. Buchanan, Lonnie Hamilton III, George M. Hearn, Jr., Bishop Dorsey Henderson, Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, Melinda Lucka, Barbara Mann, Steve Skardon, James E. Taylor, Bishop Charles vonRosenberg, Callie Walpole, Michael Wright.


Mar. 25 --- ECSC filed a Petition for Rehearing of the Order Dismissing the Appeal with the South Carolina Court of Appeals on the grounds of the merits of the case (see Jan. 13, Jan. 15, Jan. 24, Mar.18).


Mar. 25 --- The Episcopal (TEC) Diocese of Fort Worth announced a plan to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court the Texas Supreme Court's Mar. 21 decision against the TEC diocese. The deadline to apply in the U.S. Supreme Court is June 19, 2014. If the high court chooses to accept the case, their decision would have immediate impact on the South Carolina litigation.


Mar. 27 --- DSC filed a motion with Judge Goodstein to lift the stay (see Mar. 18).


Mar. 28 --- ECSC filed an opposition with Judge Goodstein on the DSC motion of Mar. 27.


Mar. 31 --- On or about Mar. 31, lawyers for DSC issued 14 subpoenas (see Mar. 27) commanding persons on the ECSC side to appear and give official depositions to DSC lawyers in preparation for the trial set in the Circuit (state) Court in July 2014. Subpoenas were officially sereved to: 1-George M. Hearn, Jr. (Apr. 11), 2-Holly Behre (Apr. 30), 3-Robert Black (Apr. 29), 4-Bishop John C. Buchanan (Apr. 16), 5-Lonnie Hamilton III (Apr. 29), 6-Bishop Dorsey Henderson (Apr. 24), 7 "Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori (Apr. 23), 8-Melinda Lucka (Apr. 30), 9-Barbara Mann (Apr. 28), 10-Steve Skardon (Apr. 14), 11-James E. Taylor (May 2), 12-Bishop Charles vonRosenberg (Apr. 22), 13-Callie Walpole (Apr. 21), 14-Michael Wright (Apr. 25).


Mar. 31 --- ECSC filed "TECSC's Notice and Motion to Quash Subpoenas Issued by the Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina and the Trustees of the Protestant Episcopal Church in South Carolina and to Hold Them in Contempt of Court" with the Court of Common Pleas for the First Judicial Circuit (state court, Dorchester County, Judge Goodstein). This asked Judge Goodstein to 1-stop DSC's subpoenas for depositions (see Mar. 18) and 2-hold DSC in contempt of court for ignoring Goodstein's "stay" order of January 17.


April 1 --- ECSC filed "Certificate of Service" with the Court of Common Pleas for the First Judicial Circuit (see Mar. 31). This was to certify that ECSC had sent notices of the action on Mar. 31 to all forty lawyers of DSC and its parishes.


April 4 --- The Supreme Court of South Carolina issued an Order that the ECSC appeal to the SC Court of Appeals be moved to the SC Supreme Court.


April 7 --- ECSC filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit (Richmond VA) an "Opening Brief of Appellant" (vonRosenberg) for its appeal from the U.S. District Court in Charleston (Judge Houck) (see Feb. 5). The brief is 53 pages. It argues that Lawrence violated the Lanham Act and relies heavily on a 1976 U.S. Supreme Court decision, Serbian Eastern Orthodox Church v. Milvojevich in which the court deferred to a hierarchical church.


April 8 --- Judge Goodstein announced a trial date of July 7 and 8, 2014, in the Circuit Court, Dorchester County Courthouse, St. George, SC. This is the suit originally brought by DSC against the Episcopal Church, Jan. 4, 2013.


April 8 --- ECSC filed with Judge Goodstein, "TECSC's Notice and Motion for Immediate Hearing" requesting immediate action on ECSC's motion of Mar. 31.


April 11 --- The first deposition of a person on the ECSC side was scheduled for this day: George M. Hearn, in Myrtle Beach. 13 other depositions have bee scheduled until May 2. Hearn was subpoenaed and "commanded" to appear for the deposition.


Apr. 18 --- Through her law clerk, Judge Goodstein advised all the attorneys on both sides that because ECSC's petition for reconsideration (see Mar. 25, Apr. 4) is before the SC Supreme Court, the proceedings in her court are stayed, or suspended until the Supreme Court issues a ruling. This means that for the time being, DSC will not be allowed to take depositions from the other side (see Mar. 31).


Apr.23 --- ECSC announced its next annual diocesan convention will be Fri. Nov. 14 and Sat. Nov. 15, 2014, at Church of the Holy Communion, Charleston.


Apr. 27 --- GAFCON Primates' Council issued a "Communique" denouncing homosexuality and equating the backlash against the new Anti-Homosexuality Act in Uganda to the earthquake in Chile and terrorist violence in Kenya. Abp. Duncan of ACNA signed the Communique.


Apr. --- Bp vonRosenberg one of five bishops in South Carolina to sign an open letter to the people of South Carolina entitled "Statement on Public Education" giving their unqualified support to public education in the state.


May 2 --- The virtueonline website reported that Bishop Nazir-Ali, Visiting Bishop in DSC, told a conference in PA "I think it is very unlikely that the Archbishop of Canterbury will recognize the ACNA [Anglican Church in North America] in any formal sense." DSC is the only one of the five secessionist dioceses that has not joined ACNA.


May 3 --- Episcopal Forum hosted conference "Enthusiastically Episcopalian in South Carolina," Holy Cross Faith Memorial Episcopal Church, Pawleys Island, led by Presiding Bishop Jefferts Schori, Bishop vonRosenberg, the Rev. Gay Jennings, president of the House of Deputies, and a delegation from the Episcopal diocese of Pittsburgh.


May 7 --- The South Carolina Supreme Court issued an "Order" denying ECSC's request for a rehearing of the dismissal of the appeal in the SC Court of Appeals (see Mar. 25 and Apr. 4). The proceedings can now resume in the Circuit Court, Dorchester County.


May 8 --- Bishop Andrew Waldo, of Upper South Carolina, announced a process by which clergy of the diocese may perform blessings of same-sex unions. (see July 10, 2012). Waldo called Lawrence and informed him of the new policy.


May 16 --- Judge Goodstein  issued an order denying ECSC's motion to add four individuals to the suit. (See Nov. 25, 2013). ECSC filed a motion to reconsider with Judge Goodstein (see June 6).


May --- Bp Lawrence appointed the Task Force for Provincial Affiliation:  Craige Borrett, chair, Bruce McDonald, Peet Dickinson, Elizabeth Pennewill, Tripp Jeffords, John Benson, Jeffrey Miller, Karen Kusko, Ken Weldon, John Foster, David Thurlow, Julius Thompson. 8 of the 12 are on the standing committee and diocesan council. 10 of the 12 are males (the 2 women are on the standing committee). 7 of the 12 are clergy. The chair serves at Christ/St. Paul's with Kendall Harmon.


June 3 --- Lawrence made a deposition in Thomas Tisdale's law office for the Circuit Court. The process lasted five hours. The transcript of remarks ran to 188 pages. Entered as Exhibit D-24 in the court trial on July 23, 2014.


June 6 --- Bishop vonR led a large delegation to TEC Province IV synod at Kanuga NC and presented a report.


--- Judge Goodstein denied ECSC's motion to reconsider her denial (May 16) of their motion to add four individuals to the suit (see June 23).


June 19 --- Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth announced it had filed an appeal of the Texas Supreme Court ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court.


June 23 --- Separatist diocese of Ft. Worth waived right to respond to TEC appeal of June 19.


June 23 --- ECSC filed an appeal with the SC Court of Appeals seeking to overturn Judge Goodstein's denial of request to add four individuals to the suit (see May 16, June 6).


July 3 --- Judge Goodstein ordered that the trial in the Circuit Court must begin on July 8.


--- SC Court of Appeals dismissed ECSC appeal of June 23 as well as the appeal submitted on July 3. This cleared way for trial in the Circuit Court.


July 8 --- Trial began in Circuit Court, Judge Goodstein presiding, Dorchester County Courthouse, St. George, SC. Plaintiffs opened first questioning of witnesses on the independent diocesan side.
--- Bp vonR issued a letter announcing the permission of the rite for the blessing of same-sex unions in the Episcopal Church diocese.


July 21 --- The Episcopal Church in SC (ECSC) diocese joined the Presbyterian Church (USA) and the United Methodist Church in submitting an amicus brief in support of the Episcopal Church diocese of Ft. Worth in its appeal to the United States Supreme Court against the secessionist element claiming to be the legitimate Episcopal Diocese of Ft. Worth. The Greek Orthodox Church also joined.


July 24 --- Regarding the secessionist case of Quincy, the Appellate Court of Illinois, Fourth District, ruled on TEC's appeal from the Circuit Court of Adams County denying the appeal and upholding the lower court's ruling that followed "neutral principles" and found in favor of the secessionist diocese of Quincy.


July 25 --- The trial in the Circuit Court (see July 8) ended today after fourteen days of proceedings. Judge Goodstein announced it would be at least ninety days before she would hand down her ruling.


July 28 --- The U.S. Supreme Court requested a response from the separatist diocese of Ft. Worth to the June 19 appeal of TEC. (See June 19, June 23). Answer due by August 27. The TEC appeal is on the official docket of SCOTUS for the Conference scheduled for September 29, 2014. The justices will decide whether to take the case. (see August 19)


August 19 --- The U.S. Supreme Court issued an order extending the deadline for response (see July 28) to September 26, 2014.


August 21 --- The Most Rev. Mouneer Anis (Chair of Global South, Primate of Jerusalem & Middle East) and the Most Rev. Ian Ernest (Secretary of Global South) issued a letter to the independent diocese to "welcome" the March diocesan convention's (see March 15) resolution asking for primatial oversight from Global South. Lawrence sent a letter to diocese announcing this. Neither letter gave any detail about the arrangement which remains a complete mystery.


Sept. 16 --- the Rev. H. Dagnall Free, Jr. was reinstated as a priest in good standing in the Episcopal Church in South Carolina. Free had been removed and released as a priest in 2013 after his decision to leave the Episcopal Church in the schism of 2012. He had remained on the staff of St. John's, Johns Island, one of the schismatic parishes.


Sept. 26 --- Separatist diocese of Ft. Worth filed a response in the U.S. Supreme Court (see Aug. 19). Court removed the Ft. Worth case from Sept. 29 Conference docket pending a reassignment.


Sept. 29 --- The U.S. Supreme Court let stand the decision of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals overturning the same-sex marriage law in Virginia. The Fourth Circuit includes South Carolina.


Oct. 3 --- The Archbishop of Canterbury said in an interview that the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) is "not part of the Anglican Communion."


Oct. 9 --- Lawrence participated in the consecration ceremony for the new archbishop of the Anglican Church in North America held in Atlanta but did not serve as one of the chief consecrating bishops.


Oct. 15 --- The Episcopal Church petition (see Sept. 26) to the U.S. Supreme Court distributed for the Oct. 31 Conference for a decision of the justices on whether to accept.


November 3 --- The U.S. Supreme Court denied the Episcopal Church petition on Fort Worth. (see June 19 and after).


Nov. 14-15 --- The Episcopal Church in South Carolina held its annual diocesan convention at Church of the Holy Communion, Charleston. Three new missions admitted, making a total of 30 local churches in the Episcopal Church diocese: Church of the Messiah in Myrtle Beach, East Cooper Episcopal Church at Mt. Pleasant, and the Episcopal Church in Okatie. 


Nov. 19 --- Legal same-sex marriages begin in SC. On Nov. 20 the US Supreme Court denied SC's appeal leaving the way clear for the marriages to proceed.


Nov. 26 --- Illinois state supreme court refused to accept TEC's appeal of the Illinois Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal decision favoring the secessionist diocese of Quincy.


Dec. 2 --- Bp vonR informed the Rt. Rev. William Skilton that he was not to administer the sacraments in ECSC. Skilton had been Suffragan Bp of DSC 1996-2007, and remains an Episcopal bishop. After the schism he had continued to celebrate Eucharist in DSC. By self-declaration, DSC severed all ties to TEC as of the schism of Oct. 15, 2012.


Dec. 3 --- ECSC announced that it had reached a settlement with the Church Insurance Company of Vermont. U.S. District judge Patrick Duffy had ruled on Jan. 9 in favor of ECSC and had reaffirmed his order. Settlement details undisclosed but apparently favorable to ECSC which is a self-sustaining diocese.


Dec. 4 --- DSC issued an e-newsletter stating that DSC originally estimated its litigation against TEC and ECSC to cost $2m, apparently all of which will have to come from its app. 21,000 communicants. It declared unilaterally that God is on DSC's side: "God's love and grace has permeated all we have done and said in the litigation process." DSC said it is raising $1.5m from parishes and is asking at least $500k from individual communicants. This is in view of the fact that DSC initiated the lawsuit against TEC (thus ignoring St. Paul).


Dec. 10 --- Lawyers for DSC and for ECSC submitted "Orders" or requests for judgment to Judge Goodstein of the circuit court. This  cleared the way for the judge to issue an official decision soon.


Dec. 12 --- Professor Wesley Hill, an assistant professor at Trinity School for Ministry and an openly homosexual man, gave a presentation at St. John's (DSC) on Johns Island. Hill holds that homosexuality is in-born and that gay persons should remain celibate while developing "spiritual friendships." Hill's view contradicts the traditional evangelical view that homosexuality is a choice, not a natural state.


Dec. 15 --- DSC website posted an open letter from Bp Skilton, a letter from vonR to Skilton and a letter from Skilton to vonR. (see Dec. 2 above). On Dec. 2, Bp VonR withdrew Skilton's right to administer sacraments in ECSC.

2015

  
Jan. 21 --- Mark Lawrence, bishop of the independent diocese, requested, and received, the resignation of Haden McCormick as rector of St. Philip's (DSC) parish, Charleston, effective in April of 2015. This came after a five months discussion among bishop, vestry, and rector. McC had been rector for 15 years and a stalwart ally of Lawrence.


Jan. 28 --- The U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, in Richmond, Virginia, heard oral arguments in the case of vonRosenberg v. Lawrence. ECSC had appealed the decision of U.S. District Judge Houck from August 23, 2013. Houck had refused to take the case in deference of the ongoing litigation in the state circuit court. ECSC had asked the U.S. District Court to recognize vonR and not Lawrence as the legitimate bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina. The Fourth Circuit will issue a decision in a few months either dismissing ECSC's appeal or accepting it and sending the case back down to the U.S. District Court in Charleston to be reconsidered. The panel of three judges at the hearing on Jan. 28 were: Diana Motz (chair), Roger Gregory, and James Wynn, Jr.


Feb. 3 --- Judge Diane Goodstein, of the state circuit court, issued her "Final Order" in the lawsuit of DSC (the independent diocese) against TEC (the Episcopal Church) and ECSC (the Episcopal Church in South Carolina) (see Jan. 4m 2013). She ruled entirely in favor of DSC and against TEC and ECSC. The Order awarded all the property, names and insignia to DSC following the "neutral principles" standard. The trial in this case was held in July of 2014 (see July 8, 25). TEC and ECSC are most likely to appeal this to the South Carolina Court of Appeals.


Feb. 6 --- In official statements from DSC, Canon Jim Lewis and Bp. Lawrence declared the Feb 3 court decision to be the work of God. Lewis: "It should be observed that it is God's grace that has brought us to this day. Legal counsel has affirmed repeatedly that they have experienced God's grace at work in this litigation from start to finish." Lawrence: "Most grateful for the Mighty Hand of God throughout the whole ordeal...move forward with our God-given dreams and missions..."


Feb. 13 --- Lawyers for ECSC and TEC filed a 182-page "Defendant's Notice and Motion for Reconsideration of Final Order," with Judge Goodstein (see Feb. 3) requesting a reversal of her "Final Order." Goodstein's rejection of this request would clear the way for ECSC and TEC to make an appeal of the Final Order to the SC Court of Appeals. (See Feb. 23).

Feb. 18 --- DSC released statistics for diocese, parishes, and missions for the year 2013, the first full year after the schism of Oct. 2012. At the end of 2013 DSC reported 23,181 "baptized members" (23,532 in the same churches in 2011) and 17,999 "communicants" or active church members (21,363 in the same churches in 2011). [Some DSC churches still count TEC members and others as "baptized members" but not as "communicants." This explains the discrepancy in the DSC statistical tables between the near flat line in reported "baptized" and sharp drop in "communicants," or active members.]


Before the schism, DSC listed 26,976 communicants. In the period around the schism, DSC lost a total of 9,829 communicants (5,113 stayed with TEC, 4,716 left DSC churches). As of Dec. 31, 2013, DSC retained 65% of the active membership of the pre-schism diocese. The DSC churches with the largest losses of active members after the schism were: Holy Cross on Sullivans Island (-1,336), St. Michael's of Charleston (-651), Old St. Andrew's of West Ashley (-433), St. Philip's of Charleston (-365), St. Helena's of Beaufort (-353), St. John's of Florence (-277), Trinity of Myrtle Beach (-212), Holy Comforter of Sumter (-126), Cathedral Church of St. Luke and St. Paul (-116), St. James of James Island (-112), Church of the Cross in Bluffton (-102).


Feb. 23, 11:55 a.m. --- Alan Runyan, lead lawyer for DSC, filed in Judge Goodstein's court "Plaintiffs' Response to Defendants' Rule 95(e) Motion to Reconsider." This is a five page response to the TEC and ECSC "Notice..." of Feb. 13. It is mostly a reiteration of trial transcript text. Attached was the harsh order of the Eighth Circuit Court of Illinois, Adams County from Feb. 20, 2015 that reprimanded TEC entirely in favor of the secessionist diocese of Quincy.


Feb. 23, 5:07 p.m. --- Judge Diane Goodstein issued "Order Denying Motion for Reconsideration," a terse two-page rejection of TEC and ECSC's Notice of Feb. 13. Having relied on the 2009 All Saints/Waccamaw decision in her Feb. 3 ruling, Goodstein now declared "The All Saints matter is a separate and distinct matter..." TEC and ECSC lawyers are expected to file an appeal of Goodstein's Feb. 3 decision within 30 days to the SC Court of Appeals.


Feb. 27 --- DSC announced that its Legal Defense Fund had created "The 1785 Society." [1785 was the year Episcopal churches in SC formed a state association.] Anyone can join for $1,785 in exchange for a lapel pin and a group dinner with Bishop Lawrence. The point is to raise $300,000 for DSC's upcoming court costs. DSC reports spending $2,000,000 on legal expenses already.


March 2 --- Judge John P. Chupp, of the 141st District Court, Tarrant County, TX, issued an "Order on Motions for Partial Summary Judgment." It denied the request of the Episcopal Church side and granted that of the secessionist diocese of Ft. Worth. The Order was a terse four sentences without any explanation. (In Jan. of 2011, Judge Chupp had granted the motion of the Episcopal Church side. The secessionists appealed that decision to the TX supreme court which then ruled that the case must be sent back to the lower court to be reheard under "neutral principles." The hearing, very brief, was on Feb. 20, 2015. In effect, the TX supreme court forced Judge Chupp to reverse his original pro-Episcopal Church ruling.)

Mar. 14 --- DSC held its annual convention, Charleston. 5 resolutions presented and passed:   1-Resolution R-1, "Required Bonding of Treasurers" (passed by voice vote);   2- Resolution R-2, "A Resolution Tasking the Standing Committee to Adopt Marriage and Employment Policy" (SC to develop policies promoting traditional marriage only; yes-226, no-4);   3- Resolution R-3, "A Resolution Directing the Task Force to Develop Parish Resources" ("Marriage Task Force" to develop materials for parishes promoting traditional marriage only; yes-235, no-1);   4-R-4, "A Resolution to Adopt a Standing Resolution on Marriage" (a-marriage is only between one biological man and one biological woman, b-changing biological gender opposes God's purpose; yes-216, no-13);   5-R-5, "Resolution to Rescind Standing Resolutions regarding Sewanee" (canonical change to drop trustees to Sewanee; yes-208, no-2). 3 of the 5 resolutions concerned enforcement of "traditional" marriage.


No action on 1-affiliation, 2-resolution tabled last year on giving rector control of local property.
In a "workshop" talk on affiliation, Lawrence suggested DSC would expand beyond its old limits to upper SC and nearby states.


Mar. 24 --- ECSC lawyers filed: 1-"Notice of Appeal" with the SC Court of Appeals, Columbia. This appealed Judge Goodstein's final order of Feb. 3 and denial of reconsideration on Feb. 23. 2-"Motion to Certify" with the SC Supreme Court, Columbia. This requested the transfer of the case from the appeals court to the state supreme court. If the supreme court grants this motion, the case will go directly to the SC Supreme Court.


Mar. 24 --- The Rev. H. Jeff Wallace reinstated as a priest in the Episcopal Church in South Carolina, the second priest to return after the schism.


Mar. 31 --- The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, in Richmond, issued an order overturning Judge C. Weston Houck's decision of Aug. 23, 2013 in which Houck deferred to the state court. A three judge panel unanimously agreed that Houck used the wrong principle for abstention. The order directed the District Court, in Charleston, to rehear the case following the Colorado River rule that requires federal courts to adjudicate cases except for very rare and extreme circumstances. The District Court can 1-abstain but only after clear cause of exceptional circumstance, or 2-render a judgment on the lawsuit.


April 2 --- This week (Holy Week), DSC sent letters to its mailing list containing two items: a note from Mark Lawrence dated Mar. 5 asking support for the 1785 fund, and a letter from the 1785 Society repeating its earlier announcement soliciting donations for the Legal Defense Fund (see Feb. 27).


April 14 --- Lawyers for DSC filed a petition with the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals for a rehearing of its March 31 decision to remand the case to District Court under the Colorado River rule.


April 15 --- The South Carolina Supreme Court agreed to hear the appeal of the circuit court decision (Feb. 3, 2015). The Court denied DSC's motion to expedite the case and set the date of Sept. 23, 2015, for oral arguments before the court with no possibility of extension. The two sides will present briefs to the court in the near future. The case will bypass the state court of appeals. South Carolina thus becomes the first time that a state supreme court will issue a judgment on the matter of the legal relationship of the Episcopal Church and one of its dioceses (PA, TX, and IL state supreme courts all refused to judge the issue and left it to the lower courts).


April 16 --- Rev. Jim Lewis, DSC Canon to the Ordinary, posted a letter to his diocese making serious charges against TEC and ECSC: --DSC was engaged in settlement discussions when DSC left TEC in 2012, --TEC has never made a settlement of a lawsuit, --DSC told TEC lawyers in 2013 that it would consider a written offer for a settlement, and there has been none from the TEC/ECSC side. Lewis offered no evidence for these charges.


April 21 --- William Oldland installed as rector of St. Bartholomew's, in Hartsville. He had served for eight years as rector of St. David's, in Cheraw. He left there in late 2014. Following decline in membership after the schism, St. David's found it could not afford a full-time rector. St. David's was one of numerous small parishes and missions affected by the declining membership in DSC.


April 28-29 --- Lawrence and other leaders of DSC held a conference with Foley Beach and other leaders of the Anglican Church in North America at Camp St. Christopher to discuss possibilities of the affiliation of DSC with ACNA. The meeting ended without a statement.


April 29 --- The U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals issued an Order denying DSC's petition for rehearing (see Apr. 14). This means the U.S. District Court in Charleston must reconsider Judge Houck's decision of abstention (see August 2013).


May 15 --- Attorneys for TEC and ECSC filed an initial brief in their appeal to the SC Supreme Court (hearing set for Sept. 23, 2015). The 51-page paper criticized Judge Goodstein's circuit court Order of Feb. 3 on process, procedure, and findings and suggested that since Goodstein's decision was so replete with errors the state supreme court should start over (de novo) with the case. The DSC side has 30 days to file a response.


May 19 --- Bishop Hector Zavala, primate of the Anglican province of South America and member of primates' committee of Global South, met with the DSC Diocesan Council "so you can continue being part of the Anglican Communion."


May 20 --- DSC hosted informal receptions in Summerton and Charleston for the public to talk with Bishop Zavala. Zavala: "I'm here with you today with the consent of the Archbishop of Canterbury." He may have implied the ABC approved of Global South's primatial oversight of DSC. He said the majority of Anglicans in the world "recognize" DSC as "part" of the Anglican Communion.


May 25 --- Lambeth Palace, the office of the Archbishop of Canterbury, announced that the ABC had been informed of the Global South primate's decision to set up primatial oversight when he joined them for their final day (Cairo; Feb. 15) and that the ABC had had discussions "exploring the exercising of pastoral, not episcopal oversight by Bishop Zavala."


May 29 --- Church Times, the official Church of England newspaper, published the announcement that Lambeth Palace had sent by e-mail to this author on May 25.

June 1 --- Thomas Tisdale, chancellor of ECSC sent a letter to the DSC lawyers offering to negotiate a settlement. He offered to surrender all claims to the properties of the 35 parishes in the lawsuit against TEC and ECSC in return for the legal rights, property, and assets of the pre-schism diocese. He said the Presiding Bishop had approved the offer. (see June 15)


June 11 --- Judge Houck, of the U.S. District Court, in Charleston, held a procedural hearing with the attorneys of DSC and ECSC. DSC lawyers had already filed a motion with Houck to dismiss the case. Houck gave DSC attorneys until June 30 to present a brief in support of their motion (see June 30). He also gave ECSC attorneys 15 days afterwards for them to submit a response brief (see July 15). Houck is under direction of the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals (see Mar. 31) to reconsider the case following the Colorado River standard that requires federal courts to adjudicate federal law except for rare circumstances. The case in federal court charges violation of a federal law, the Lanham Act. See: Mar. 5-7, 28, June 6, 10, Aug. 8, 23, 2013.


June 15 --- DSC rejected Tisdale's offer of June 1 to negotiate a settlement and issued press releases denouncing what they saw as the malevolent motives, policies, and procedures of the TEC side.


June 15 --- Attorneys for the independent diocese submitted their response brief (see May 15) to the South Carolina Supreme Court basically arguing that the court should affirm its 2009 decision in the All Saints case which overruled the Dennis Canon and recognized the All Saints, Pawleys Island, claim of local ownership of the property.


June 17 --- gunman massacred nine persons in Emanuel A.M.E. Church on Calhoun Street in Charleston. The next day, bishops vonR and Lawrence issued similar statements calling for prayers, fellowship of grieving, support for the whole community, self-examination, and a seeking of ways forward in healing, reconciliation and peace in Charleston and in South Carolina.


June 25 --- 78th General Convention of TEC (June 25-July 3) opened in Salt Lake City. ECSC delegation: Bishop vonR, Clergy: Jim Taylor, Wilmot T. Merchant, II, Richard Lindsey, Michael Wright; Laity: Thomas Tisdale, Lonnie Hamilton, Mary Ann Foy, Andrea McKellar. SC delegation enthusiastically participating in GC for first time in three decades. Two former bishops of South Carolina, Salmon and Skilton, attended GC but did not take seats with the SC delegation. 


June 25 --- TEC and ECSC lawyers filed "Initial Reply Brief" with the South Carolina Supreme Court in response to DSC lawyers' brief of June 15 (see May 15, June 15). The 25-page paper argues the circuit court's decision (see Feb. 3) violates the First Amendment and neutral principles.


June 26 --- The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of the legality of same sex marriage in the U.S. DSC issued a statement affirming its stand for heterosexual marriage only.


June 26 --- President Obama delivered the eulogy at the funeral of the Rev. Clamenta Pinckney at College of Charleston. The vice president, a delegation from Congress, and Hillary Clinton also attended.


June 27 --- The Rt. Rev. Michael Bruce Curry, the bishop of the Diocese of North Carolina, was elected 27th Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church. He won 70% of the vote on the first ballot (121 of 174). He will be the first Presiding Bishop who is African American.


June 30 --- Attorneys of Mark Lawrence filed "Memorandum in Support of Defendant Lawrence's Supplemental Motion to Dismiss or in the Alternative to Stay Proceedings" in the U.S. District Court in Charleston (see June 11, 2015). They argued that the state court (see Feb. 3, 2015) had already settled the issues at hand and asked the court to either dismiss this case or issue a stay pending the upcoming state supreme court decision. (See ECSC response of July 15, 2015).


July 1 --- General Convention of TEC adopted same-sex marriage for the Church. Two resolutions passed House of Bishops (June 29) and House of Deputies (July 1)overwhelmingly to provide for trial liturgy and canonical change allowing same-sex marriage in the Episcopal Church starting Nov. 29, 2015 in places where civil law permits this. Bishop vonR and the ECSC delegation voted unanimously in favor of both resolutions.


July 2 --- "Communion Partners Salt Lake City Statement" issued by 18 bishops in dissent of July 1 actions by GC on marriage equality. While criticizing the resolutions, the Statement declared loyalty to TEC. 2 who signed were Salmon, retired bishop of South Carolina, and Skilton, retired bishop suffragan of South Carolina. (Skilton voted against the resolutions favoring marriage equality in the House of Bishops on June 29. Salmon was not on the list of bishops voting). In response to the Communion Partners Statement, the House of Bishops issued a declaration, "Communion Across Difference" emphasizing the diversity and unity of the Episcopal Church.


July 4-7 --- GAFCON elements denounced the TEC resolutions on marriage equality. These were prominently displayed on the Titus One Nine website, the quasi-official site of DSC. On July 4, Global South issued a statement declaring TEC had contradicted God's plan. It was signed by nine Anglican primates of Africa, Asia, and South America (Zavala). On July 6, GAFCON issued a statement under the signatures of the primates of Nigeria and Kenya denouncing TEC's action and reasserting its support for the replacement Anglican Church in North America. On July 7, the Anglican primate of Uganda strongly criticized TEC's reform and "their imperialist commitment to export it to the rest of the Anglican Communion." (General Convention had passed resolution AO51 "Support LGBT African Advocacy" directing TEC to act in aid of "(LGBTI) sisters and brothers in Africa.")


July 15 --- Attorney Tisdale filed "Plaintiff's Memorandum in Opposition to Defendant's Supplemental Motion to Dismiss or in the Alternative to Stay the Proceedings" in the U.S. District Court in Charleston (see June 11 and 30, 2015). Tisdale argued that the state court action was not parallel to the federal court's and that the court must follow the Colorado River principle as directed by the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals.


July 21 --- Bp vonR announced that same-sex marriage will begin in ECSC on November 29, 2015. (See July 1)


July 24 --- Judge Chupp, district court, Tarrant Co TX, 141st district, issued "Final Judgment," a terse four-page statement finding all in favor of the secessionist diocese of Ft. Worth (see March 2, 2015). The TEC diocese of Ft. Worth is expected to appeal this decision to the 2nd Court of Appeals, a state appeals court of 7 justices (6 women, I man; all elected) located in Ft. Worth with jurisdiction over 12 counties. This court has not considered this case. Chupp's original decision favoring the TEC diocese was appealed directly to the TX Supreme Court which sent it back to Chupp with orders to follow neutral principles, hence today's ruling. (see Dec. 3).


Sept. --- DSC announces creation of Anglican Leadership Institute offering a first semester in Jan. 2016 and a second semester in Sept. 2016. Its purpose is to train "orthodox" Anglican "leaders." Applicants must sign a statement rejecting both marriage equality for homosexuals and the Episcopal Church.


Sept. 2 --- Rev. Jim Lewis, assistant to Mark Lawrence, issued a press release for DSC calling for prayers for courtroom victory in the upcoming state supreme court hearing and giving an official prayer for DSC: "It is our prayerful hope that the state Supreme Court will uphold this decision [Goodstein's] in its entirety." Lewis continued the theme (see Feb. 6, 2015) that God is on DSC's side: "Recognizing that divine favor which has overshadowed us from the beginning..."


Sept. 21 --- Judge Houck, of the U.S. District Court, in Charleston, issued "Order" granting Lawrence's motion to stay proceedings pending the resolution of the state supreme court case. (See June 11, June 30, and July 15, 2015)


Sept. 23 --- The South Carolina Supreme Court held a hearing on the TEC/ECSC appeal of Judge Goodstein's Order of Feb. 3, 2015. In time, the justices will issue a written decision.

Oct. 6 --- DSC Standing Committee adopted "A Statement of Faith," from the Marriage Task Force. The Statement declared: --the Bible the "final authority," --the bishop the "final interpretive authority," --God assigned gender to all human beings, --that altering one's gender is "in conflict" with God's will, --marriage is only for one woman and one man for lifetime, --sexual intimacy "is to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other," --and all employees and "leaders" of the diocese must "agree to abide" by the Statement of Faith.
Committee also adopted "Additions to Diocesan Employee Handbook," also from the Marriage Task Force, requiring "all persons employed by the Diocese in any capacity, or who serve as leaders" to sign an oath of allegiance to the Statement of Faith, and giving the bishop the right to "discharge" employees at will.  


October 10 --- Mark Lawrence "ordained" to the priesthood Martha Horn, the first woman he has ordained to the priesthood and the first woman ordained priest in DSC since the schism of 2012.


October 14-16 --- Global South primates met in Cairo: agreed to attend Jan. meeting called  by the Archbishop of Canterbury; condemned the Episcopal Church; praised Mark Lawrence; recognized Anglican Church in North America and made its Archbishop a member of the Primates' Council.


October 19-21 --- Foley Beach, Archbishop of ACNA, addressed the Fall Clergy Conference of DSC: "the discussion was frank."


October 19 --- Thomas Tisdale, chancellor of ECSC, filed "Notice of Appeal" with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit (Richmond) appealing Judge Houck's "Order" of Sept. 21 granting a stay in the suit of VonRosenberg v. Lawrence that had been remanded to Judge Houck by the U.S. Court of Appeals (see Mar. 31; Sept. 21)


Nov. 1 --- The Most Rev. Michael Curry installed as XXVII Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church at the Washington National Cathedral. A delegation of 11 communicants from ECSC attended.

Nov. 3 --- DSC Standing Committee adopted "A Facilities Use Policy" requiring anyone using church facilities to sign an oath recognizing the Statement of Faith and giving the bishop approval over all facility usage. This is meant to prevent same-sex marriage ceremonies on DSC church properties.

Nov. 5 --- ECSC, Diocesan Future Committee formed to study models for future development of diocese and report to annual convention.

Nov. 13-14 --- ECSC held its diocesan convention at Holy Cross/Faith Memorial Church, Pawleys Island. St. Mark's, Port Royal, admitted as a parish (mostly refugees from schismatic St. Helena's of Beaufort); Grace Church, Charleston, designated as the cathedral of the diocese.


Nov. 29 --- Same-sex marriage began in the Episcopal Church, at the discretion of the local bishop, and in ECSC.


Dec. 3 --- The Episcopal Diocese of Ft. Worth and the Episcopal Church filed briefs in the Court of Appeals, 2nd District of Texas asking overturn of July 24 decision.

2016

Jan. 4 --- DSC began its first month-long "semester" of its Anglican Leadership Institute with 14 students. Applicants could get full scholarships, but all applicants were required to sign a pledge rejecting both marriage equality and the Episcopal Church.

Jan. 11 --- The Archbishop of Canterbury opened a meeting of the 38 primates of the independent provinces of the Anglican Communion, in Canterbury. It is scheduled to last for five days.


Jan. 12 --- In the primates' gathering, Uganda made a motion to ask the withdrawal of TEC and the Anglican Church of Canada. The motion failed to carry. The Ugandan primate left Canterbury.


Jan. 13 --- In the primates' gathering, a motion was made to remove TEC from AC for three years; voted down 15-20. An agreement was adopted to impose sanctions on TEC for three years [one report said vote 26-yes, 3-no, 6-abstentions].


Jan. 14 --- Bishop Charles vonRosenberg announced he will retire as bishop provisional of the Episcopal Church in South Carolina soon after June 26, 2016.


Jan. 14 --- At their Canterbury gathering, the Anglican primates released an official statement. It prescribed "consequences" (punishment) for the Episcopal Church: suspension from official functions in the Anglican Communion for three years. The offense identified causing this "consequence" was TEC's disturbing the unity of the AC by alteration of its marriage canons to allow same-sex marriage.


Jan. 15 --- Presiding Bishop Curry and House of Deputies president Gay Jennings said TEC will not change any policy on homosexuality. Jennings said she would attend the Anglican Consultative Council in April and participate fully.


Jan. 15 ---- Final Communique of primates' gathering issued, Canterbury Jan. 11-15: --set next Lambeth Conference at 2020, next primates' meetings for 2017, 2019, --rejected criminal sanctions against homosexual people (but not against homosexual acts), --refused to admit the Anglican Church in North America to AC and referred question to the Anglican Consultative Council with discouragement; ACNA archbishop denied recognition as a primate.


Jan. 15 --- ABC held press conference: --apologized to gays on behalf of church, --insisted on word "consequences" for TEC not sanctions or punishment, --stressed unity of AC, --on key questions said "I don't know." --ABC accompanied by 2 primates (Hong Kong and Southern Africa) while 33 were absent including all of GAFCON.


Feb. 15 --- Archbishop of Canterbury made an address to the CofE General Synod giving criteria for membership in the Anglican Communion.


Feb. 11 --- ECSC Standing Committee met Bishop Clay Matthews, of the Office of Pastoral Development (TEC) and resolved to seek a new provisional bishop for ECSC. ECSC will make a nomination of a candidate to be approved by a special convention.


Feb. 22 --- ECSC filed "Opening Brief of Appellant the Right Reverend Charles G. vonRosenberg," in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit (Richmond). This supported ECSC's appeal of Judge Houck's decision (see Oct. 19, 2015) to abstain. The brief presented two main arguments against Houck's abstention: the court did not adhere to the Colorado River standard for abstention, and the federal court was wrong to see this case as parallel to the state court action.

Feb. 23 --- DSC Marriage Task Force issued report establishing condemnation of and diocesan institutional opposition to marriage equality through resolutions of the Standing Committee. Adoption of 4 policies: 1-"A Statement of Faith" (for DSC) (SC Oct. 6, 2015), 2-A Statement of Faith (for parishes), 3-"Additions to Diocesan Employee Handbook" requiring all employees and "leaders" to sign a pledge of allegiance to the Statement of Faith and giving the bishop the right to terminate employment at will (SC Oct. 6, 2015), 4-"A Facilities Use Policy" (SC Nov. 3, 2015) requiring anyone using church facilities to sign an oath not to violate the Statement of Faith and giving the bishop authority over use of the church facilities. This would prevent same-sex marriage ceremonies on all DSC diocesan and local church properties.    

March 12 --- DSC held its annual meeting of the convention in Bluffton. Closed to the public. The task force on affiliation, chosen by Mark Lawrence two years ago, recommended DSC join the Anglican Church in North America. Since this would require the votes of two successive convention meetings, a special convention will be called in the Fall of 2016 and the second and final vote will come in the annual convention of 2017. The ACNA is not recognized by the Archbishop of Canterbury or the Anglican Communion.


April 5 --- The 5th District Court of Appeals in California rejected the appeal of the Anglican Diocese of San Joaquin. This left standing Judge Donald Black's May 5, 2014 decision finding all in favor of the Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin. All of the rights and assets of the pre-schism diocese are to be relinquished to the EPSJ. ADSJ may ask for a rehearing or appeal to the California Supreme Court. (see 20 April).


April 8-10 --- The Most Rev. Michael Curry, presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church, visited ECSC. He participated in services and programs at several Episcopal churches in Charleston. Details:  www.episcopalchurchsc.org/presiding-bishop-currys-visit-2016.html . The Very Rev. Robert Willis, Dean of Canterbury Cathedral also participated in the visit.


April 8 --- Anglican Consultative Council opened meeting in Lusaka, Zambia (Anglican Province of Central Africa). TEC represented by three delegates. 3 of the 38 provinces boycotted the meeting (Uganda, Nigeria, and Rwanda) to protest TEC. The ABC, the Anglican Secretary-General, and the president of the ACC all defended TEC. Meeting to continue to 19 April.


April 11 --- DSC hosted "Voices of the Anglican Communion" at Cathedral of St. Luke and St. Paul, Charleston, 6-8 p.m. 10 speakers, 6 from Uganda; all from provinces opposed to rights for homosexuals and hostile to TEC.


April 18 --- Anglican Consultative Council (see Apr. 8) rejected the primates' statement (see Jan. 14, 2016) imposing punishment, called "consequences", on TEC.


April 19 --- GAFCON Primates' Council met in Nairobi (until 23 April). Council: Chair, Eliud Wabukala (Kenya), Nicholas Okoh (Nigeria), Stanley Ntagali (Uganda), Henry Isingoma (Congo), Onesphore Rwaje (Rwanda), Daniel Bul (Sudan), Hector Zavala (South America), Foley Beach (Anglican Church in North America).


April 19 --- Texas Second Court of Appeals, in Ft. Worth, held a hearing in the case of the Episcopal Church's appeal of 141st District Judge John Chupp's July 24, 2015 judgment awarding all to the secessionist diocese of Fort Worth.


April 20 --- Anglican Diocese of San Joaquin filed "Petition for Rehearing" with the California Fifth District Court of Appeals (see April 5, May 13).


April 22 --- GAFCON Primates' meeting (see Apr. 19) issued "Nairobi Communiqué 2016," blasting TEC for "deliberately walking away" and the recent Anglican Consultative Council meeting for its "inability" and "damage."

April 28 --- ECSC Standing Committee heard report from its search subcommittee on recommendation of candidate for new bishop. Once the nominee is announced, a special convention will be called for election.

May 13 --- Anglican Diocese of San Joaquin filed a petition with the California Supreme Court on appeal of Judge Black's May 5, 2014, decision that found all in favor of the Episcopal Church side. (see April 20). Since the state appeals court declined to take the case, it is unlikely the state supreme court will accept it. The CA Supreme Court has until July 14 to announce whether it will take the case. If it refuses, Black's decision will stand as the law. (see July 13).

June 29 --- The Rt. Rev. Edward Lloyd Salmon, Jr., died. He was bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina from 1990 to 2008. Although a conservative critic of the Episcopal Church, he opposed secession from the Church.

June 30 --- Episcopal Church in South Carolina announced new nominee to be next provisional bishop, Rt. Rev. Gladstone B. "Skip" Adams III, soon to retire bishop of Central New York. Election will be in special convention, Sept. 10, at Grace Church Cathedral in Charleston. If elected, he will replace Bishop vonRosenberg.

July 13 --- Supreme Court of California denied Anglican petition for review of lower court decision (see May 13). This ended 7 years of litigation in the case of San Joaquin and ended it on the side of the Episcopal Church. Bishop Menees of the Anglican diocese of San Joaquin acknowledged legal defeat and announced the surrender of all properties to the Episcopal diocese.

September 10 --- The Rt. Rev. Gladstone B. "Skip" Adams, III, elected and installed at special meeting of the convention of the Episcopal Church in South Carolina, at Grace Church Cathedral, in Charleston. He succeeded the Rt. Rev. Charles G. vonRosenberg as bishop provisional of ECSC. Bishop vonRosenberg succeeded Bishop Mark Lawrence who abandoned the Episcopal Church on October 15, 2012, and was released and removed as a bishop of the Episcopal Church on December 5, 2012.

November 11-12 --- ECSC held its annual meeting of the convention at Grace Church Cathedral in Charleston.

November 11 --- the Rev. Matt McCormick rejoined the Episcopal Church diocese of South Carolina after having abandoned the Church in the schism of 2012. He was the third priest to leave the schismatic side in South Carolina to rejoin the Episcopal Church.

November 28 --- ABC Justin Welby wrote to the 37 other primates inviting them to convene in Canterbury Oct. 2-7 and reiterating his theme of walking together: "Our battle is not against flesh and blood, least of all against each other...We are all in the one boat."

December 9 --- Hearing in the U.S. Court of Appeals, 4th Circuit (Richmond), on the appeal of TEC/ECSC of Judge Houck's stay of September 21, 2015 (see Oct. 19, 2015, Feb. 22, 2016). (See Feb. 21, 2017).


2017

February 15 --- Synod of the Church of England rejected a bishops' report that declared marriage to be only between a man and a woman.

February 21 --- The U.S. Court of Appeals, 4th Circuit, remanded the case of vonRosenberg v. Lawrence to the U.S. District Court in Charleston for adjudication. The three appeals judges ruled unanimously that the District Court had erred in refusing to hear the case. (see Dec. 9, 2016).

March 11 --- DSC convention voted to join the Anglican Church in North America. Vote was unanimous after Bp Lawrence, Peter Jensen, secretary general of GAFCON, Peter Akinola, "founding father" of GAFCON, and Foley Beach, archbishop of ACNA all lobbied for passage.

March 17 --- the Rev. Catharine Moore Norris was ordained to the priesthood in the DSC, at Holy Cross, Sullivans Island. She is the second woman to be ordained in DSC since the schism. Norris was ordained by Bp Hobby, of the Anglican Dio. of Pitt. Bp Lawrence has ordained only one woman to the priesthood, Martha Horn.

June 8 --- The Episcopal Church of Scotland resolved to allow same-sex couples to marry in its churches.

June 27 --- The Provincial Council of the Anglican Church in North America voted to admit DSC to the ACNA.

July 9 --- The Synod of the Church of England resolved to welcome transgendered people and to explore new liturgies to support the tendsgender process.

July 19 --- Judge Charles Weston Houck died. He was the U.S. District judge, in Charleston, who had handled the federal actions in the Church case (see Feb. 21, 2017). Judge Patrick Duffy assumed the case in the U.S. District Court. The case was later assigned to Richard Gergel.

August 2 --- South Carolina Supreme Court overturned most of the circuit court decision of Feb. 3, 2015 (the hearing was on Sept. 23, 2015). The Court:
1-recognized legal rights of TEC and ECSC, by way of the Dennis Canon, over 29 of the 35 parishes in DSC. 
2-left 7 parishes in local hands. 
3-said Camp St. Christopher belongs to the Episcopal Church diocese.
4-deferred to the federal court the decision on which of the two dioceses should have the legal rights of the old diocese.

August 4 --- ECSC held meeting of all diocesan authorities, clergy, and parish officers, and representatives of the nine missions in exile, at Grace Church Cathedral, to discuss legal issues.

August 8 --- In the U.S. District Court, in Charleston, Judge Gergel (see July 19) issued a scheduling order in the case of vonRosenberg v. Lawrence. Discovery is to be completed by December of 2017. Trial is to be held in March of 2018.

August 9 --- Publication of A History of the Episcopal Church Schism in South Carolina by Ronald James Caldwell. Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock. 523 p. $62.00.

August 15 --- The Episcopal Church filed a motion to be enjoined with ECSC in the vonRosenberg v. Lawrence suit in U.S. District Court, Judge Gergel. (see Aug. 8).

August 22 --- DSC filed an opposition to TEC's motion of Aug. 15.

August 23 --- Judge Gergel, issued an "Order and Opinion" granting TEC's motion (see Aug. 15) and dismissing DSC's claims in opposition (see Aug. 22).

August 30 --- With agreement of the two parties, Judge Richard Gergel, of the U.S. District Court, in Charleston, ordered mediation. He appointed as mediator U.S. District Court senior judge, Joseph Anderson. (Court rules direct mediation to begin within 30 days of order.) 

September 1 --- DSC lawyers made request in the South Carolina Supreme Court for a time extension to file Petition for Rehearing. In the request, the lawyers revealed the news that Judge Richard Gergel, on agreement of the two parties, had ordered mediation on August 30. Court denied request for time extension. DSC lawyers then filed three motions of Petition for Rehearing, one for Church of the Good Shepherd, of Charleston, one in general, and one asking for retroactive recusal of Justice Kaye Hearn and vacancy of her opinion in the August 2 Court decision.

September 7 --- South Carolina Supreme Court asked the Episcopal Church in South Carolina to file a response to DSC's petitions for rehearing, of Sept. 1, and to do so within 10 days.

September 18 --- Church lawyers (see Sept. 7)  filed a "Return" with SCSC arguing that DSC's request for rehearing (Sept. 1) was mostly a rehash and that Justice Hearn had a right to judge the case. They asked the SCSC to dismiss DSC's three petitions for rehearing.

September 19 --- TEC side filed "Amici Curiae Brief of The Honorable (retired) William T. Howell and The Honorable (retired) H. Samuel Stilwell in Opposition to Respondents' Motion to Recuse" with SCSC. These retired judges argued that Justice Hearn had every right to participate and that she had broken no ethics rules.
This paper included two addenda: 1-"Affidavit of Rebecca Lovelace" refuting the Rev. Tripp Jeffords' affadavit; 2-"Affidavit of Expert Opinion of Dr. Gregory B. Adams." Adams was a University of SC law professor and specialist in judicial ethics. He argued that Hearn had broken no ethics rules.

September 25 --- DSC filed in SCSC, "Reply in Support of Motion to Recuse the Honorable Justice Kaye G. Hearn..." in response to TECSC's "Return" of Sept. 18. This mostly defended the timeliness of the motion and again called for Hearn to recuse herself.

October 4 --- Organizational meeting for mediation, in Columbia. The two sides, TEC/TECSC and DSC, met with senior U.S. District Judge Joseph Anderson and agreed to set the first mediation session on November 6, 2017. 

October 2-6 --- Anglican primates met in Canterbury. Three boycotted the meeting: Uganda, Nigeria, and Rwanda. Primates issued a Communiqué declaring the Anglican Church in North America not to be a province of the Anglican Communion.

October 13 --- DSC filed with the SC Supreme Court, "Response to Amicus Curiae Brief of the Honorable William T. Howell and the Honorable H. Samuel Stilwell." (See Sept. 19).

November 6-7 --- First mediation session between TEC/TECSC and DSC, in Columbia, led by senior federal district judge, Joseph Anderson. At 10:45 a.m., Nov. 7, the two parties announced a recess in the talks until December 4, 2017. Mediation had been ordered by U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel on Aug. 30, 2017. All legal issues, in federal and state courts, are open for consideration.

November 10 --- The Palmetto Family Council sponsored a move in support of DSC's petitions for rehearing in SCSC: "Brief for 106 Religious Leaders as Amici Curiae in Support of Respondents' Petition for Rehearing."

November 10-11 --- TECSC held 227th annual convention, at All Saints Church, Hilton Head.

November 17 --- The South Carolina Supreme Court responded to DSC's petitions of September 1, 2017. The court issued two "Orders". One denied a rehearing (vote was 2-2; no majority meant denial). The other denied Justice Hearn's recusal (unanimous).

November 17 --- SCSC issued a "Remittitur" order to the circuit court directing the court to enact the Aug. 2 decision.

November 19 --- DSC opened a new lawsuit against TEC/TECSC in state court. It filed "Summons" and "Complaint" in the circuit court, Dorchester County. This demanded payments from TEC/TECSC under the "Betterments Statute" in which the property owner(s) owes reparations to illegal occupants for the improvements they made to the properties in question. (see Nov. 20)

November 20 --- DSC filed "Amended Complaint" in circuit court. (see Nov. 19; September 9, 2019; September 11,2019)

November 21 --- DSC bishop and standing committee announced DSC would appeal the SC Supreme Court decision of Aug. 2 to the U.S. Supreme Court. DSC has 90 days from Nov. 17 decision to submit an appeal to SCOTUS (Feb. 15, 2018).

December 1 --- "Parish Contingency Plan Template" secretly sent to DSC parishes, apparently by DSC officials at diocesan headquarters. This 4-page paper outlined ways for congregations (of the 29 parishes) to leave their buildings and relocate elsewhere. This Plan was released on the Internet on Feb. 21, 2018.

December 4 --- Second round of mediation talks ended abruptly. Mediation recessed a second time, this time until January 11-12, 2018.

December 15 --- The Episcopal Church and the Episcopal Church in South Carolina filed in the circuit court of Dorchester County "Notice of Motion and Motion to Dismiss Complaint." This asked the court to discard DSC's Complaint of November 19, 2017.

December 27 --- DSC lawyers filed "Motion to Establish Complex Case Designation" in support of their Nov. 19 Complaint.



2018

January 10 --- DSC suit of Nov. 19, 2017, in Dorchester County circuit court, assigned to Judge Edgar Dickson "for administrative purposes." This was by direction of Judge Diane Goodstein as the chief administrative judge of that court.

January 12 --- Third session of mediation. At conclusion, no information released and no date set for a subsequent meeting.

January 18 --- TECSC lawyers filed "Notice of Motion and Motion for Pro Hac Vice Admission" in the circuit court, Dorchester County. This was to admit TEC lawyers David Booth Beers and Mary Kostel as attorneys for the Church side in DSC's Nov. 19, 2017 suit. DSC attorney Alan Runyan consented. The Motion was granted on Jan. 31, 2018.

January 23 --- TEC and TECSC submitted a proposal to DSC for a protocol of discussions between TEC/TECSC and the parishes of DSC concerning a settlement. DSC was given until Feb. 2 to respond.

January 25 --- Bishops vonRosenberg and Adams, on the Church side, and Lawrence, on the DSC side submitted in the U.S. District Court, Charleston, "Joint Status Report" giving their views of the progress of the mediation. They agreed the mediation was ongoing and announced TEC/TECSC's proposal (see Jan. 23) and said there had been no progress on diocesan property and Lanham Act issues. TEC/TECSC said it was not opposed to the court's lifting the stay and resuming the case. 

January 26 --- Presiding Bishop Michael Curry presided over the closing Eucharist of the Forma conference at Grace Church Cathedral.

February 2 --- Deadline for Bp Lawrence to respond to TEC/TECSC's proposal of Jan. 23. [At this point, one cannot know the response. It and its contents are covered by the confidentiality of the mediation.]

February 9 --- DSC filed "Petition for Writ of Certiorari" with the U.S. Supreme Court as an appeal of the SC Supreme Court ruling of Aug. 2, 2017. [TEC and TECSC temporarily waived their right to file a response to DSC's petition.] (See June 7)

February 14 --- U.S. District Court judge Richard Gergel lifted the stay in the case of vonRosenberg v. Lawrence which had been in place since Aug. 30 at the start of the mediation process. A trial in this case is expected later this year. 

February 20 --- Bp Lawrence filed a motion in the U.S. District Court, Charleston,to dismiss part of the charges against him in the case of vonRosenberg v. Lawrence:  "Defendant the Right Reverend Mark J. Lawrence's Motion to Dismiss Count II of the Plaintiff Bishops' Second Amended Complaint for Lack of Standing Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(1)." Lawrence also filed an explanation of the motion: "Memorandum in Support of Defendant the Right Reverend Mark J. Lawrence's Motion to Dismiss Count II of the Plaintiff Bishops' Second Amended Complaint for Lack of Standing Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(B)(1), (See March 6, March 7).

February 27 --- SCOTUS requested a response from TEC/TECSC concerning DSC's Feb. 9 petititon. Date for response set at March 29, 2018.

March --- Samuel J. Richards reviewed A History of the Episcopal Church Schism in South Carolina in Anglican and Episcopal History, Vol. 87, No. 1 (March 2018) pp. 83-85. 

March 1 --- TEC and TECSC filed seven papers in the U.S. District Court, Charleston, in the case of vonRosenberg v. Lawrence:

  (1) - "Motion to Intervene and Join Parties and Claims by the Episcopal Church in South Carolina." This requests addition to the case of the Corporation of the Trustees, of the Diocese of South Carolina, and the parishes of the DSC.

   (2) - "Bishops vonRosenberg's and Adams' Motion to Amend their Complaint and Join Parties and Claims." 


  (3) - "Motion of the Episcopal Church to Amend Its Amended Complaint-in-Intervention to Join Parties and Claims."


  (4) - "(Proposed) Second Amended Complaint-in-Intervention." This essentially asks the court to enact the TEC/TECSC control over the 28 parishes involved in the state supreme court decision of Aug. 2, 2017.


  (5) - "[Proposed] Third Amended Complaint by Bishop vonRosenberg Bishop Adams & Intervenor the Episcopal Church in South Carolina (the "Associated Diocese")." This essentially asks for TEC/TECSC to regain possession of the corporation of the Trustees, of DSC, and the 28 parishes in question.


  (6) - "Memorandum in Support of Bishops vonRosenberg and Adams' and the Episcopal Church in South Carolina's Respective Motions to Intervene, to Join Parties and Claims to Amend Complaint."


  (7) - "Memorandum in Support of the Episcopal Church's Motion to Amend its Amended Complaint-in-Intervention to Join Parties and Claims."


March 6 --- TECSC filed in the U.S. District Court, Charleston, a response to Lawrence's Motion to Dismiss of Feb. 20: "Bishops vonRosenberg and Adams' Response to Bishop Lawrence's Motion to Dismiss." (See Feb. 20).


March 7 --- U.S. District Court, Charleston, judge Richard Gergel issued "Order" denying Lawrence's Feb. 20 Motion to Dismiss part of the lawsuit against him. (See Feb. 20, March 6).


March 23 --- TEC/TECSC requested of SCOTUS time extension for response to April 30, 2018. (see Feb. 27.) They also announced that friends of DSC would be filing "amici curiae" briefs in support of DSC's petition of Feb. 9.

March 23 --- DSC filed "Motion for Clarification of Jurisdiction and for Other Relief" with the circuit court of Dorchester County. This asked the court to clarify how the issues resulting from the SC supreme court decision of Aug. 2, 2017 would be addressed.

March 27 --- SCOTUS granted TEC/TECSC's request of Mar. 23. New deadline for all respondents is April 30, 2018.

March 29 --- Two Amici Curiae briefs filed in favor of DSC: 1-"Brief for Professors Randy Beck, Ashutosh Bragwat, Samuel Bray, Nathan Chapman, Robert Cochran, Richard Epstein, Marci Hamilton, John Inazu, Michael McConnell, John Nagle, Michael Paulsen, Lawrence Sager, Chaim Saiman, James Stern, Anna Su, Nelson Tebbe, Eugene Volokh, and Robin Fretwell Wilson as Amici Curiae in Support of Certiorari."
2-"Brief of the Falls Church Anglican and the American Anglican Council as Amici Curiae in Support of Petitioners."

April 5 --- Texas Second Court of Appeals found in favor of the TEC diocese (see Apr. 19, 2016; July 24, 2015) and ordered the case remanded to the lower court for new judgment. (Bp. Iker announced he would appeal directly to the TX supreme court.)

April 6 --- Dr. Jeremy Morris, of Cambridge University, reviewed A History of the Episcopal Church Schism in South Carolina in Church Times.

April 16 --- Judge Richard Gergel, of the U.S. District Court, in Charleston, issued "Order and Opinion" granting TEC/TECSC right to press claims against DSC, its parishes and its Trustees but denied their request for trust enforcement. He suggested they press their property claims in the circuit court.

April 25 --- Lawyers for TEC requested of the U.S. Supreme Court time extension for filing response to DSC (Feb. 9). Court granted extension to May 7, 2018.

May 7 --- Lawyers for TEC and TECSC filed "Brief for Respondents in Opposition" with the U.S. Supreme Court. This was in response to DSC's petition of Feb. 9 and DSC's Amici curiae briefs of March 29.

May 8 --- Lawyers for TEC and TECSC filed "Defendants' Petition for Execution and Further Relief on Declaratory Judgments of the South Carolina Supreme Court and for the Appointment of a Special Master," in the Circuit Court, Dorchester County.

May 9 --- Lawyer for TECSC filed "Third Amended Complaint by Bishop vonRosenberg Bishop Adams & Intervenor The Episcopal Church in South Carolina (the "Associated Diocese")," in the U.S. District Court, in Charleston.

May 14 --- The circuit court of Dorchester County scheduled a hearing on TEC/TECSC's motion to dismiss of Dec. 15, 2017, and DSC's motion to establish complex case of Dec. 27, 2017. The hearing was set for May 30, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. (see May 22).

May 15 --- Lawyers for DSC filed "Reply Brief for Petitioners," in the U.S. Supreme Court. (See May 7).

May 16 --- TEC/TECSC filed, in the circuit court of Dorchester County, "Defendants' Amended Petition for Execution and Further Relief on Declaratory Judgments of the South Carolina Supreme Court and for the Appointment of a Special Master." (See May 8).

May 22 --- The U.S. Supreme Court set June 7 as the date for the conference of justices to consider DSC's petition for cert.

May 22 --- The circuit court of Dorchester County accepted a motion from DSC, supported by TEC/TECSC, to postpone the scheduled hearing of May 30 (see May 14). The court will decide a new date for a hearing.

June 7 --- The justices of the U.S. Supreme Court met in conference and denied DSC's writ of certiorari (see Feb. 9). The decision was publicly announced on June 11.

June 11 --- U.S. Supreme Court released announcement of denial of DSC's petition for review. (See June 7). This left the SCSC decision of Aug. 2, 2017, as the law.

June 12 --- TECSC lay leadership met at Grace Church Cathedral, in Charleston, to hear discuss policies and procedures with the diocesan authorities.

June 14 --- DSC held clergy conference at St. Paul's, Summerville.

June 15 --- TECSC announced the appointment of the Rev. William Coyne as the Missioner for Returning Congregations. He is to facilitate the reintegration of the 29 parishes into the Church diocese pursuant to the SCSC decision of Aug. 2, 2017.

June 17-22 --- GAFCON III met in Jerusalem and issued "Letter to the Churches" demanding a radical reformation of the Anglican Communion. It called for GAFCON boycott of the 2020 Lambeth conference unless the Archbishop of Canterbury excludes the Episcopal Church and certain other branches of the Anglican Communion and replaces them with non-AC GAFCON affiliates. Continued denunciation of human rights for homosexuals.

June 28 --- TECSC announced three gatherings for reconciliation on July 16, 17, 18 in Conway, Charleston, and Bluffton.

July 11 --- TECSC filed "Petititon for an Accounting" with the circuit court asking for the court to appoint an accounting firm to search and list the assets of the Diocese of South Carolina after January 1, 2008.

July 16-18 --- TECSC held three reconciliation "conversations," in Conway, Charleston and Bluffton.

July 26 --- Judge Edgar Dickson held a status conferences with the lawyers on both sides and asked them to submit lists of issues they wish him to consider. 

July 27 --- The breakaway diocese of Fort Worth filed "Petition for Review" with the Texas Supreme Court (see April 5, 2018).

July 31-August 9 --- Bishop Mark Lawrence makes presentations in Sumter, Walterboro, Charleston, Myrtle Beach, and James Island.

August 2 --- The two sets of lawyers submitted their lists to Judge Dickson for consideration (see July 26, 2018).

September 4 --- Judge Dickson, of the circuit court, announced a timeline for proceeding in September and October with the goal of a hearing in late October.


September 24 --- TEC/TECSC and DSC filed briefs with Judge Edgar Dickson, of the circuit court, as per request of the judge (see Sept. 4).

TEC/TECSC
1. "Defendants' Memorandum of Law in Support of their Amended Petition for Execution and Further Relief on Declaratory Judgments of the South Carolina Supreme Court and for the Appointment of a Special Master."

2. "Defendants' Memorandum of Law in Support of their Petition for an Accounting."

3. "Memorandum of Law in Support of Defendants' Motion to Dismiss Plaintiffs' Complaint under the Betterment Act."

DSC:
1. "Memorandum in Support of Motion for Clarification and for Other Relief."

2. "Supplement to Motion for Clarification of Jurisdiction and for Other Relief."

3. "Memorandum in Support of Motion to Establish Complex Case Designation."


October 5 --- TEC/TECSC and DSC filed responses to the September 24 briefs with Judge Edgar Dickson, of the circuit court, as per request of the judge. (see Sept. 24).

DSC:
1. "Plaintiffs' Response in Opposition to Defendants' Memorandum in Support of Petition and Execution."

2. "Plaintiffs' Response in Opposition to Defendants' Memorandum of Law in Support of the Petition for an Accounting."

3. "Response in Opposition to Motion to Dismiss."

TEC/TECSC (Oct. 5, 8):

1. "Defendants' Brief in Opposition to Plaintiffs' Motion for Clarification and Further Relief."

2. "Defendants Brief in Opposition to Plaintiffs' Motion for Complex Case Designation."


October 12 --- TEC/TECSC and DSC filed replies to the Oct. 5 responses with Judge Edgar Dickson, of the circuit court, as per request of the judge. (see Oct. 5).

DSC: "Plaintiffs' Reply top Defendants' Brief in Opposition to Plaintiff's Motion for Clarification and Further Relief."

TEC/TECSC: "Defendants' Omnibus Reply Brief to Plaintiffs' Opposition Briefs to Defendants' Petititon for Enforcement, Petition for an Accounting, and Motion to Dismiss Betterment Action."

November 16-17 --- Annual meeting of the Episcopal Church in South Carolina, at the Church of the Holy Communion, Charleston.

November 18 --- the Rev. Andrew O'Dell called on the congregation of St. Philip's Episcopal Church, Charleston, to break their bonds of affection for their church building and prayed to God to destroy the edifice rather than let it fall into the hands of "false teachers." St. Philip's started in 1680; its present building dates from 1838. 

November 19 --- Judge Edgar Dickson, of the circuit court, held a hearing on DSC's motion for clarification, essentially asking the circuit court to disregard the SCSC decision of Aug. 2, 2017, and rule on the issue of the properties anew. The hearing was in the Orangeburg county courthouse, in Orangeburg, SC. The judge listened to the arguments of the lawyers on the two sides and said he would rule on the motion in time. He set aside the other five motions/petitions for the time being.

December 7 --- Lawyers for TECSC filed "Memorandum of Law in Support of Bishop vonRosenberg, Bishop Adams, and the Episcopal Church in South Carolina's Motion for Summary Judgment," in the U.S. District Court. Lawyers for TEC filed "Plaintiff-in-Intervention the Episcopal Church's Memorandum in Support of Motion for Summary Judgment," in the same court.
--- Lawyers for DSC files 38 motions in the U.S. District Court. Both TEC/TECSC and DSC asked Judge Gergel for summary judgment in their favor. 



   2019

January 8 --- Judge Dickson, of the circuit court, sent an email to the two sets of lawyers asking for the agreements among the SCSC justices and how these agreements support the lawyers' claims.

January 11 --- Lawyers for TECSC filed with Judge Richard Gergel, of the U.S. District Court, Charleston, 1-"Opposition of Plaintiffs and Plaintiff-in-Intervention to the Lawrence Parishes' Motions for Summary Judgment,"   2-"Plaintiffs Bishop vonRosenberg, Bishop Adams, and the Episcopal Church in South Carolina's Memorandum of Law in Opposition to Defendants' Second Motion for Summary Judgment (DKT. 603)." These were in response to DSC's motions of Dec. 7, 2018.

January 14 --- Judge Dickson, of the circuit court, sent an email to the two sets of lawyers asking for documents on how the local churches voted on the Dennis Canon.

March 19 --- Judge Dickson, of the circuit court, set a hearing on DSC's Betterments suit, on March 27.

March 20 --- Lawyers for TEC/TECSC filed "Petititon for Writ of Mandamus" with the South Carolina Supreme Court asking the court to order Judge Dickson to implement the SCSC decision of Aug. 2, 2017.

March 26 --- Judge Dickson, of the circuit court, cancelled the scheduled hearing of March 27.

April 11 --- DSC filed "Intervenors' Return to Petition for Writ of Mandamus" with the SCSC in response to TEC/TECSC's March 20 petition.

April 17 --- TEC/TECSC lawyers filed "Petitioners' Reply to Intervenors' Return," with the SCSC in response to DSC's "Intervenors' Return..." of April 11.

May 23 --- TECSC Standing Committee resolved to find a new full-time provisional bishop and a new full-time diocesan bishop. Bp Adams is expected to leave his post as part-time provisional bishop by the end of 2019.

June 11 --- TECSC lawyers filed a "Complaint" in the U.S. District Court, in Charleston, against the Church Insurance Company of Vermont claiming the company wrongfully aided breakaway entities in SC. The Complaint seeks damages and asks for a jury trial.

June 14 --- The Church Insurance Company of Vermont filed "Complaint (Declaratory Judgment) (non-Jury)" in the U.S. District Court, in Charleston naming seventeen parishes presently occupied by DSC and TECSC. It asks for a declaratory judgment on the rights and duties of CIC-VT in regards to the defendants (17 parishes and TECSC).

June 28 --- The South Carolina Supreme Court denied TECSC's petition for a Writ of Mandamus (see March 20).

July 2 --- Judge Edgar Dickson, of the circuit court, scheduled a hearing on the Betterments suit, on July 23 at the Calhoun County courthouse, St. Matthews SC (see Nov. 19, 2017).

July 18 --- TECSC filed in the U.S. District Court, in Charleston, the following (see June 14):     "TECSC's Memorandum of Law in Support of and in Opposition to the Following:  (1)TECSC's Motion to Dismiss CIC-VT's Counterclaim and Third-Party Complaint in Case N. 2:19-CV-01672-RMG [July 6, 2019];  (2) TECSC's Motion to Dismiss CIC-VT's Complaint in Case No. 2:19-CV-01713-RMG [July 6, 2019];  (3) CIC-VT's Motion for Joinder in Case No. 2:19-CV-01672-RMG [July 6, 2019];  (4) CIC-VT's Motion for Consolidation in Case No. 2:19-CV-01672-RMG [July 6, 2019];  (5) CIC-VT's Motion for Consolidation in Case No. 2:19-CV-01713-RMG [July 5, 2019]" In this, TECSC asked the court to dismiss all of CIC-VT's various court petitions.

July 23 --- Judge Edgar Dickson held a hearing on DSC's "Betterments" lawsuit, in the Calhoun County courthouse, St. Matthews SC. Dickson implemented the first of the three majority rulings of the SCSC Aug. 2, 2017 decision. After hearing arguments from both sides, he set the Betterments suit aside and asked the two parties to go to mediation of all of the six petitions before him.

August 28 --- Judge Dickson informed the two sets of lawyers that he would deny TECSC's motion for dismissal of DSC's Betterments suit. (see Sept. 9)

September 9 --- Judge Dickson issued "Order Denying Defendants' Motion to Dismiss Second Amended Complaint" denying TEC/TECSC's motion to dismiss DSC's Betterments suit.

September 11 --- TECSC filed "Answer of the Episcopal Church in South Carolina" to DSC's "Amended Complaint" (Betterments suit) of Nov. 20, 2019. (see Nov. 20, 2017)

September 13 --- DSC newsletter announced DSC priest, the Rev. David Barr, to become Associate Rector of St. George's Episcopal Church, in the Episcopal Diocese of Tennessee, on Oct. 1, 2019.

September 19 --- Judge Richard Gergel, of the U.S. District Court, in Charleston issued three orders in the case of vonRosenberg v. Lawrence. (See Mar. 5, 2013)
(1) Order and Opinion, 73 p. Concerning diocese. Declared the Episcopal Church diocese as the heir of the historic diocese and permanently banned the breakaway group using the names and insignia of the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina.
(2) Order and Opinion, 18 p. Concerning parishes. Allowed the breakaway parishes to retain their names but banned parish officials from using the names and insignia of the Episcopal Diocese of SC.
(3) Order and Opinion, 27 p. Concerning expert witnesses. Excluded three from breakaway side and one from Church side.

By judges's order, the diocese formerly known as the Episcopal Church in South Carolina is now the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina and the Diocese of South Carolina. The group that formerly called itself the Diocese of South Carolina will have to adopt a new name.
(From here on, the Episcopal Church diocese will be EDSC and breakaway diocese will be referred to as ADSC.)

September 19 --- TEC and its diocese filed "Notice of Motion and Motion for Reconsideration," with circuit court judge Edgar Dickson. This asked Dickson to reconsider his denial (see Sept. 9) and to dismiss the Betterments suit.

September 20 --- Breakaway Standing Committee adopted new name, "Anglican Diocese of South Carolina." Internet website and Facebook pages changed to remove Episcopal Church titles and insignia.

September 26 --- Mediation session conducted by attorney Thomas Wills, in Charleston. After day-long talks between the two sets of lawyers, Wills declared an Impasse. The matter now returns to the circuit court judge, Edgar Dickson, who had ordered the mediation.

October 4 --- Thomas Tisdale, chancellor of EDSC, sent a letter to circuit court Judge Edgar Dickson requesting a hearing on the implementation of the SCSC decision.

October 7 --- ADSC filed "Notice of Appeal" with Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, in Richmond, to appeal Judge Gergel's Order of 19 September. Also filed on Oct. 18, 2019.

October 21 --- Thomas Tisdale, chancellor of EDSC, sent a second letter (see Oct. 4) to Judge Edgar Dickson requesting a hearing on the implementation of the SCSC decision.

October 28 --- Judge Edgar Dickson notified the two sets of lawyers he would hold a hearing on 26 November 2019, 10:00 a.m. in the Orangeburg County Courthouse.

November 11 --- Episcopal Diocese of SC and TEC filed "Petition to Enforce the Injunction" with the U.S. District Court, in Charleston, asking the court to stop the breakaway group from claiming to be the historic diocese (see Dec. 18).

November 18 --- U.S. District Judge Gergel issued "Order and Opinion" in the Church Insurance Company case. He dismissed CIC-VT's counterclaim and third party complaint and called for TECSC to file a brief within 10 days explaining its claims against CIC-VT.

November 20 --- ADSC lawyers filed "Defendants' Response to Plaintiffs' Petition to Enforce the Injunction" (see Nov. 11) with Judge Gergel.

November 25 --- EDSC lawyers file "Reply to Response to Petition to Enforce the Injunction" (see Nov. 11, Nov. 20) with Judge Gergel.

November 25 --- ADSC lawyers filed "Motion to Stay Pending Appeal" with Judge Gergel. (see Dec. 6, 18).

November 25 --- Church lawyers Thomas Tisdale and Mary Kostel sent a letter to Judge Dickson summarizing the whole case before the judge.

November 26 --- Judge Dickson held a third hearing, in the Orangeburg courthouse. He said he would ask the state supreme court for clarification of its Aug. 2, 2017 decision and invited the lawyers to contribute to it.

December 6 --- EDSC lawyers filed "Plaintiffs' Opposition to Defendants' Motion to Stay Pending Appeal" with Judge Gergel (see Nov. 25, Dec. 18).

December 18 --- U.S. District Court Judge Richard Gergel issued "Order and Opinion" denying a stay (see Nov. 25, Dec. 6) and granting some parts and denying other parts of EDSC's Nov. 11 petition for enforcement of the injunction.

December 23 --- ADSC filed "Defendants-Appellants' Motion to Stay Injunction and the Stay Case" with the U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit. This asked the Court to stay Judge Gergel's Injunction (see Sept. 19, Dec. 18) and to stay the case in the appeals court pending the resolution of a case before the U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. Patent & Trademark Office v. Booking.com

December 23 --- ADSC filed "Order Granting Motion for Clarification" with Judge Edgar Dickson, of the circuit court. In Nov. 26 hearing, Dickson asked the two sides to submit proposed orders on ADSC's Motion for Clarification of Jurisdiction. In this proposal, ADSC is asking Dickson to discard the SCSC decision and declare the parishes to be sole owners of the properties.

EDSC also sumbitted its proposed order to Judge Dickson asking him to deny ADSC's motion on clarification.

December 30 --- EDSC and TEC filed "Appellees' Response in Opposition to Appellants' Motion to Stay Injunction and to Stay Case" with the U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit (see Dec. 23). This asked the court to deny ADSC's motions for the two stays.

December 31 --- Bishop Skip Adams ended his tenure as provisional bishop of the Diocese of South Carolina.


2020

January 14 --- The U.S. Court of Appeals denied ADSC's motions for stays (see Dec. 23, 30, 2019).

January 15 --- EDSC announced that the Rt. Rev. Henry Parsley, Jr., would be part-time visiting bishop of the diocese.

January 23 --- EDSC Standing Committee announced it would not choose a provisional bishop but would start the search process to find the next diocesan bishop of the Diocese of South Carolina. The last diocesan bishop was removed on Dec. 5, 2012.

February 14 --- Judge Dickson informed the two sets of lawyers he would hold a hearing on 27 February at the Orangeburg courthouse to discuss EDSC's three outstanding motions on implementation of the SCSC decision of Aug. 2, 2017.

February 21 --- EDSC lawyers filed "Petition for a Writ of Prohibition," with the SCSC asking the court to prohibit Judge Dickson from litigating issues settled in the SCSC decision of August 2, 2017. (See Mar. 31, 2020)

February 27 --- Judge Dickson held his fourth hearing. This one discussed EDSC's motions for the implementation of the SCSC decision of Aug. 2, 2107. He issued no decision.

March 12---ADSC postponed its annual meeting that had been scheduled for Mar. 13-14, until further notice because of the COVID-19 pandemic. EDSC issued a directive against shaking hands at church and reminding churchgoers that drinking from the common cup is optional at communion.

March 16 --- In response to the COVID-19 crisis, EDSC and ADSC announced cancellation of in-person church services at least until the end of March. Several parishes will provide electronic transmission of church services.

March 24 --- EDSC announced churches closed for in-person services until 30 April.

March 31 --- The SCSC denied EDSC lawyers' petition for writ of prohibition. (See Feb. 21, 2020)

April 23 --- EDSC standing committee announced hold on the timeline in the search for new diocesan bishop.

April 24 --- EDSC standing committee announced that, owing to the pandemic, churches would remain closed indefinitely.

April 30 --- Lawyers for ADSC filed "Brief of Appellants" with the U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit asking the court to reverse Judge Gergel's decision of Sept. 19, 2019. (EDSC responding brief due July 1, 2020.)

May 7 --- ADSC issued guidelines for the re-opening of churches.

May 15 --- EDSC issued guidelines fore the re-opening of churches after June 1.

May 22 --- Texas Supreme Court issues decision in favor of the breakaway diocese in the case of Fort Worth.

June 19 --- Circuit Court Judge Dickson issued an "Order" nullifying the SC Supreme Court decision of Aug. 2, 2017, which recognized Episcopal Church ownership of 28 of the 36 parishes in question, as well as Church diocesan ownership of Camp St. Christopher. Dickson refused the Remittitur from the SCSC, and instead contradicted the SCSC finding that the 28 had acceded to the Dennis Canon. Dickson's decision is certain to be appealed to the SC Court of Appeals.

June 29 --- EDSC lawyers filed "Defendants' Motion for Reconsideration and to Alter or Amend," with Circuit Court Judge Edgar Dickson petitioning the judge to reconsider his June 19 Order.

July 2 --- EDSC filed "Appellees' Brief" with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. The ADSC filed its brief on Apr. 30. ADSC has until July 22 to file a response to EDSC's brief.

July 9 --- Bishop Mark Lawrence, of the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina, announces call for a bishop coadjutor.


_________________________________________





IMPORTANT DATES AHEAD


Pending. Expected response of ADSC to EDSC's Motion of June 29, 2020, in the circuit court.

Pending. Expected appeal by EDSC of Judge Dickson's Order of June 19, 2020, to the South Carolina Court of Appeals.

July 22, 2020. Due date for reply of ADSC to EDSC's brief of July 1, 2020, in the U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit.

Pending. Oral arguments and/or decision of U.S. Court of Appeals on ADSC's appeal of Judge Gergel's ruling of Sept. 19, 2019.

November 20-21, 2020. 230th annual meeting of the Diocese of South Carolina, at Holy Cross Faith Memorial Episcopal Church, Pawleys Island. Presiding Bishop Michael Curry will be the featured speaker.

GAFCON bishops' conference, Kigali, Rwanda. (Postponed).

Lambeth Conference, Canterbury. (Postponed until 2022).

June 30-July 9, 2021. General Convention of the Episcopal Church, Baltimore MD.