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EPISCOPAL DIOCESE OF FORT WORTH SEEKS FULL STATUS AS DIOCESE IN ACNA

EPISCOPAL DIOCESE OF FORT WORTH SEEKS FULL STATUS AS DIOCESE IN ACNA
Concerning a proposed Missionary District of Dallas

The Rt. Rev. Ryan S. Reed, Bishop
April 16, 2021

There have been numerous overlapping jurisdictions in the Anglican Church in North America since its founding; for many this is an encumbrance on ministry, especially if a bishop is hundreds of miles from his flock. Bishop Ryan Reed, who served on the ACNA Executive Committee before his election to the episcopate in 2019, is committed to the historic pattern of geographic diocesan structures, which continue to foster the best pastoral care for clergy and people.

In the Dallas area of North Texas, there have been numerous diocesan affiliations, including Churches for the Sake of Others (C4SO) and our diocese. After consultations with Bishop Todd Hunter and others, a draft petition (over Bishop Reed's signature) has been developed which has yet to be approved by the College of Bishops. However, some planning steps and bridge-building are under way. In accord with ACNA Canon 5 and Canon 12 of Title I, the proposal would establish a Missionary District of Dallas, to operate temporarily as a Deanery of the Diocese of Fort Worth. The petition cites common aims of church planting, evangelism, compassionate ministry, and equipping disciples.

This arrangement would continue until the congregations in the Missionary District are ready to form a new diocese. Up to four churches from the Diocese of Fort Worth and the same number from C4SO are in the process of discerning affiliation with the District.

Churches from other Anglican jurisdictions are invited to participate in discernment, or perhaps simply partner in ministry with the District.

As a first sign of fellowship, the clergy of Christ Church attended our Mass of Collegiality at St. Vincent's Cathedral during Holy Week. Full approval of the proposal may be granted by the College of Bishops in June. If the undertaking is a success, it may become a model the province will implement elsewhere.

It is with real joy that we embark on this collaboration, particularly since the Diocese of Fort Worth was generously formed out of a portion of the Episcopal Diocese of Dallas. Almost 40 years on, we hope to return the blessing and support strong and growing ministry in Dallas.

END

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