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FAIRFAX, VA: Diocese of Virginia and TEC Settle with Church of the Apostles

FAIRFAX, VA: Diocese of Virginia and TEC Settle with Church of the Apostles Anglican

May 4, 2012

The Episcopal Diocese of Virginia, the Episcopal Church and Church of the Apostles Anglican, Fairfax, have reached an agreement that concludes the property dispute which began in 2006.

Under the terms of the agreement, Church of the Apostles Anglican is conveying all real and tangible personal property to the Diocese, including a payment of $230,000. Apostles Anglican will retain various items of tangible personal property which will assist the congregation as it moves forward beyond this dispute.

In addition, as Apostles Anglican further discerns its needs for additional items, the Diocese will seek to accommodate those requests wherever possible. The Diocese will retain the Episcopal parish registers and certain historic Episcopal communion silver. Apostles Anglican has withdrawn its motion to stay the Court's Final Order and will forgo any appeal of the decision.

"This settlement allows both Church of the Apostles Anglican and the Diocese of Virginia to move forward in our ministries," said Henry D.W. Burt, secretary of the Diocese. "We look forward to the new chapter for both the Diocese of Virginia and Apostles, and we hope that the Church of the Apostles is blessed in its journey."

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Virginia Anglican Congregation Stands in Faith Despite Leaving Property
Church of the Apostles, Fairfax, and Episcopal Diocese End Property Dispute

FAIRFAX, Va. (May 4, 2012) - Church of the Apostles, an Anglican congregation located in Fairfax, Va., today announced that it has reached a final settlement of its lawsuit with the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia and The Episcopal Church. Under the settlement, Apostles will transfer its buildings and land, $230,000, and some personal property to the Episcopal Diocese. There is a mutual release of all claims. Despite the high cost of its 2006 decision to disaffiliate from the Episcopal Church, Apostles looks forward with great excitement and confidence to continuing its robust and spirit-filled ministry at another location. Apostles is grateful to be walking this new path with other area congregations, as part of the Anglican Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic, formed to reflect our common understanding of Anglican traditions and the historic Christian faith.

David Harper, Apostles Rector, said: "Although the settlement involves the loss of our church home, which has been our base for spreading the Gospel for almost 40 years, we realize that this is the appropriate time to leave it behind. God is in control of our past, our present, and our future, and we trust that in time He will help us obtain a new church home of our own. We are seeking His guidance as we move forward, continuing our focus on exuberant worship and local and worldwide ministries of hope and healing through the power of the Holy Spirit. We also continue to embrace our unique synthesis of the Evangelical, Pentecostal, and Catholic traditions: "Three Steams, One River." At Apostles, we have always believed that our church is its people and programs, not its buildings. This experience has only served to reinforce that reality."

"We are deeply grateful to be able to hold our regular Sunday worship services at Whole Word Fellowship in Oakton, Va. at 3:30 PM, and to use facilities that other area churches have generously made available for our various ministry needs. We also appreciate the grace extended by the Episcopal Diocese over the period in which the settlement was negotiated, and we agreed to go our separate ways," concluded Harper.

Church of the Apostles is a member congregation of the newly established Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic, a regional and growing diocese of the Anglican Church in North America, dedicated to reaching North America with the transforming love of Jesus Christ. The Diocese consists of 35 member congregations.

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