Anglican Watch has been following events at St. James Texarkana for a while, and we are increasingly concerned about the parish and the lack of support from the diocese. We also see further signs of trouble within the parish.
Among the issues we see:
- Several complaints of questionable veracity on the part of rector David J.A. Halt.
- Multiple resignations by staff at the church school.
- Ongoing concerns about Halt’s work ethic — or possible lack thereof.
- Signs of financial decline in the parish.
- Ongoing efforts by Halt to discredit those who would speak truth to power about his conduct, including allegations that he terminated Rich Daly’s employment in retaliation for the latter’s opposition to potential sexual harassment within the parish.
- Most alarming, possible issues in Halt’s background, warranting a complete background check by the diocese or the vestry. We note that, per Title IV, Halt is required to report any such issues to the appropriate judicatory.
All of this begs the question: why is bishop George Sumner not wading in before the situation results in meltdown?
Should St. James close, it will eliminate any Episcopal presence in the area. Allowing this to happen would be a breach of Sumner’s fiduciary obligation under church canons.