POWERPLAY: TEC Extorts Its 15%, Episcopal Diocese of Central Florida Caves
THE UNDERGROUND PEWSTER
March 1, 2017
Oh, those tricky Episcopalians. They passed a resolution at their 2015 General Convention that I missed. Buried in Resolution D013 was the following wording.
(f) Full payment of the diocesan assessment shall be required of all Dioceses, effective January 1, 2019.
(g) Effective January 1, 2016 Council shall have the power to grant waivers from the full annual assessments of Dioceses within the limit established by the General Convention. Any diocese may appeal to Executive Council for a waiver of the assessment, in full or in part, on the basis of financial hardship, a stated plan for working toward full payment, or other reasons as agreed with the Executive Council. Effective January 1, 2019, failure to make full payment or to receive a waiver shall render the diocese ineligible to receive grants or loans from the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society unless approved by Executive Council.
The Episcopal pledge was not required in the past and many parishes who disagreed with the pro-abortion, pro-gay ordination, pro-same-sex marriage stances of TEc tried to not contribute to the larger organization by designating their diocesan pledge to be used solely for the purposes of their diocese.
In times when the budget of the Episcopal Diocese of Upper South Carolina was tight, some of us asked for a cut in the Episcopal pledge. All such suggestions were quashed by the Bishops at those times.
It appears that Resolution D013 was worded to give struggling dioceses a waiver. I suspect the rump dioceses, small groups of parishes that decided to stay in TEc after the majority of a diocese departed, were the intended beneficiaries of this largess.
The reality of this resolution is slowly sinking in at the diocesan level, but TEc loyalists, like my past bishops, will probably succeed in furthering the progressive agenda by passing resolutions in support of paying the full ask from 815. The Diocese of Central Florida recently did just that.
From the Episcopal Diocese of Central Florida comes the following,
Debate Heats Up Over Mandatory 15 Percent Assessment
February 1, 2017
In an otherwise calm and orderly convention, the heat rose during the discussion period R-1 Episcopal Church Assessment, the mandatory 15 percent assessment scheduled to begin Jan. 1, 2019.
After years of using an "asking formula," the National Church changed the wording to "mandatory" with Resolution D013 at the 78th General Convention in 2015 and set by Resolution C001. In the past, under the asking formula, a parish suffered no consequences if it did not contribute to the National Church.
Currently, the assessment stands at 16.5 percent. Some parishes, which oppose certain rules set forth by the National Church, pay their money to the Diocese of Central Florida, but ask their money not be sent to the National Church. Those parishes will not have that option when the 15 percent assessment takes effect. Without getting a waiver, a diocese that does not pay the full assessment will be unable to get grants or loans from the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society, the name under which The Episcopal Church is incorporated, conducts business, and carries out mission.
"I heartily support the efforts being made to find ways for us as a diocese to meet the 15 percent financial assessment voted on by General Convention," said the Rt. Rev. Bishop Gregory O. Brewer during his State of the Diocese Address. "Among other reasons, because the financial funding brings integrity to the work for change. And the work for change brings integrity to the financial funding. The two go hand-in-hand. As it might be said crassly, 'Put your money where your mouth is.' And that's what I'm committed to us doing."
After heated and impassionate pleas from both sides, R-1 passed with a significant number of dissenting votes.
To download the full resolution, click here. http://www.cfdiocese.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Resolution-adopted-at-Convention-2017.pdf
I had to laugh when I read that classic bit of Episcobabble from Bishop Brewer,
"Among other reasons, because the financial funding brings integrity to the work for change. And the work for change brings integrity to the financial funding."
There are a few reasonable pewsitters left in Central Florida, and one was actually quoted in the article,
"One word: mandatory. That's a tax. I want to be able to give freely. It's not too cheerful if they have your arm behind your back. I have no problem with the 15 percent as opposed to the 10 percent. It would make all the difference in the world to me if they took out that one word--mandatory."
--Dr. Larry Warren, St. Andrews', Ft. Pierce
If I was a member of a church in Bishop Brewer's diocese, I would stop putting money in the plate because to give is to support the extortionists at 815 who are going to use the money to push their progressive agenda and who will continue to fund pro-abortion groups such as the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (formerly known as the Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights).
Sadly, most pewsitters are unaware of where their pledge dollars are going.
Sad but true.
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