Category Archives: News

Financial Transparency: An Epic Failing of the Episcopal Church

One of the great truths of non-profit governance is the importance of transparency. As one CPA firm puts it, “Transparency is a trust building tool; the more transparent your organization becomes, the more trustworthy you will be viewed by the public, donors, and regulators. It is important for non-profit organizations to clearly state their mission and communicate the outcomes of their actions to the outside… Read More »

Episcopal Church Struggles With Eucharistic Theology Amidst Pandemic

During the late twentieth century, The Episcopal Church experienced a sea change as the liturgical renewal movement transformed the Holy Eucharist to the focus of divine worship in the church. The COVID-19 pandemic has, however, upended those changes, and the church is struggling to discern a path forward. Prior to the liturgical renewal movement, many parishes celebrated Holy… Read More »

St. Paul’s Alexandria VA Preschool Initiative Appears Headed for Crisis Amidst Fallout from Pandemic

As Episcopal churches throughout the US struggle to deal with the pandemic, many are seeing reduced income, faltering attendance, and other signs that suggest trouble down the road. But one church, located near this author, may be about to experience big trouble, due to its decision to launch a preschool even as the pandemic was bursting onto the… Read More »

Race and The Episcopal Church: Too Little, Too Late?

With much of the United States in turmoil over the death of African-American subjects in police custody, faith communities need to ask the questions, “What is our responsibility in this? Are we culpable?” In the case of The Episcopal Church, the answers to these questions are not good. Consider: It now has been more than 50 years since… Read More »

Failure of Episcopal Dioceses and Churches to Adopt Current Policies to Prevent Abuse Disrespects Abuse Survivors

During the 2015 General Convention (GC) of The Episcopal Church, two measures were passed that addressed abuse in the church. Measure 2015-A073 authorized the updating of Model Policies for the Protection of Children, while Measure 2015-A074 called for the update of the Safe Church Training Materials.  The work was done by a GC-appointed task farce spearheaded by the eminently capable… Read More »

Coronavirus: Helping Bring About the Future of the Church?

Today’s post isn’t about abuse. Instead, it’s about the future of the church. Specifically, might coronavirus point the way towards the future of the church? What does one have to do with the other? Possibly nothing. Possibly a lot. Several factors made me think about these issues. One was an excellent article by Cam Miller, an Episcopal priest.… Read More »

Pro Publica Database of Credibly Accused Priests Added

Thanks to the generous efforts of non-profit investigative media organization Pro Publica, data on more that 6,000 Catholic priests has now been added to our online database. A few reflections: A data import of this sort is, especially now in the early phases, of necessity clunky. The category field of the existing database therefore has been used to… Read More »

Reflections on Spiritually Abusive Church Tenth Presbyterian

Ed: I recently asked Phil Snyder, who is being sued by his former church, Tenth Presbyterian in Philadelphia, about an upcoming hearing in the matter. Below are his thoughts. My conclusion is that the church’s efforts to silence Phil via this lawsuit, as well as its apparent smear campaign, in which it claims that Phil is mentally ill… Read More »

Breaking News: Unconfirmed Reports About Disgraced Pastor Andy Savage’s New Church

This just in. Unconfirmed sources report that disgraced pastor Andy Savage, who sexually assaulted a teen entrusted to his care, is holding church services Sunday evenings at the offices of Speak Communications, located at 1648 West Massey in Memphis. Speak, which allegedly is owned by Andy’s brother, does marketing communications for churches. Sources say Andy’s new church, known… Read More »

New Feature: Online Database

Over the past several years, I have watched with dismay as The Episcopal Church and other denominations and faith traditions discuss the sharing of information about abusers. It seems to me that this should be a simple thing: If you are clergy and engage in any sort of abuse, people need to know. Churches need to know. Parishioners… Read More »

Vt. Episcopal Bishop Shannon MacVean-Brown On Inclusion

Shannon MacVean-Brown, the newly elected bishop for the Episcopal Diocese of Vermont, recently spoke to National Public Radio (NPR) about the challenges facing The Episcopal Church (TEC) particularly in a region where relatively few attend any church, and where TEC has a small footprint. Her comments on inclusion are noteworthy, particularly as they pertain to abuse. “If the… Read More »

Tenth Presbyterian in Philadelphia Tries to Bully Whistleblower Phil Snyder Into Silence

Ed: Please consider donating to Phil’s GoFundMe effort. Tenth Presbyterian in Philadelphia, affiliated with the Presbyterian Church of America, a conservative neo-Calvinist denomination, is again trying to silence a whistleblower. Specifically, church officials have filed suit against former member and deacon Phil Snyder, who has repeatedly spoken out about allegations of sexual misconduct involving the church. Before we… Read More »