We’ve previously covered the appalling situation at St. James Texarkana, marked by an feckless, arrogant, and interpersonally challenged rector, David Halt; allegations of retaliation by Halt and bishop George Sumner against former parochial vicar Richard Daly over the latter’s opposition to the sexual harassment of a woman connected with the church; questionable information involving Halt’s background; lies to the parish in which Halt claims that Daly retired; and more.
Now, Anglican Watch has uncovered additional allegations of efforts by Halt to discredit Daly, including efforts to shake down the local police department for dirt on Daly, who serves as the chaplain to Texarkana police officers. And we have learned of similar efforts directed at the Chicago police department, where Daly previously served as a police officer. For the record, we have done our own research, and there’s no dirty laundry to be found.
That said, those with a penchant for investigation will find some juicy tidbits in Halt’s background. In fact, we’d start our research by looking at his Ohio days, and work our way up to the current sexual harassment allegations.
Sources close to the matter report that the parish is sliding into financial trouble, even as Halt looks at ways to access the parish endowment to cover expenses.
Meanwhile, there have been a raft of resignations at the St. James school, which appears to be lurching towards collapse due to unresolved conflict and a dislike by parents and teachers alike of Halt.
Needless to say, the only way St. James will survive is to restore integrity and accountability. That means ending the sexual harassment issues, insisting that Halt get off his backside and do his job, and treating all persons with respect.
As for efforts to raid the endowment, Anglican Watch is going to offer some advice, worth exactly what Halt paid for it: Don’t go there. The endowment should be used only for capital expenses and possibly major unforeseen items, like insurance retentions and deductibles. It should never be used to cover operating expenses.
Parishes that use their endowments to subsidize day-to-day operations almost invariably discover it’s a quick road to ruin, disincentivizing evangelism and growth, even as it discourages existing members from giving generously.
Meanwhile, we ask parishioners at St. James some simple questions:
- How do you feel about sexually harassing women?
- Is it okay to retaliate when someone objects?
- How do you square the baptismal covenant’s promise to respect the dignity of every human being with the church’s support and endorsement of the sexual harassment of women?
In short, time is fast running out for an intervention. Act soon and clean up your act, St. James, or your doors will close within the next ten years.
Simple as that.