Since late last night many, many liberal "remain Episcopal" types have flooded the internet with cries that state that "secretly" our priests and bishop are setting us up to move to the Roman church (and personally that would be fine with me, if we could have an Anglican rite). These mean-spirited folk, Katie Sherrod for one, are going out of their way to paint our conservative bishop and clergy as having horns and a tail. Frankly, I think they are so afraid, maybe of what they profess to believe, that they would say anything to try to damage those of us who want to remain faithful Christians. We, the remain faithful group, are much more concerned about saving our immortal souls and those of others than we are of being labeled "Episcopal".
Anyway, the blogs and reports have reached the bishop, and this is his response to them. I do not intend to link to their blathering, but I will link to our Remain Faithful group.
A Statement by Bishop Iker on Roman Catholic Dialogues
"I am aware of a meeting that four priests of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth have had with Bishop Kevin Vann of the Catholic Diocese of Fort Worth on June 16, 2008. After a year of studying various agreed statements that have come out of ecumenical dialogues between Anglicans and Roman Catholics on the national and international level, these clergy expressed an interest in having a dialogue on the local level and asked my permission to make an appointment to talk with Bishop Vann. The stated goal of these official Anglican/Roman Catholic dialogues (which have been going on for over 40 years) has been full, visible unity between the two communions.
"The priests who participated in this meeting with Bishop Vann have my trust and pastoral support. However, in their written and verbal reports, they have spoken only on their own behalf and out of their own concerns and perspective. They have not claimed to act or speak, nor have they been authorized to do so, either on behalf of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth or on my own behalf as their Bishop.
"Their discussion with Bishop Vann has no bearing upon matters coming before our Diocesan Convention in November, where a second vote will be taken on constitutional changes concerning our relationship with the General Convention of the Episcopal Church. There is no proposal under consideration, either publicly or privately, for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth to become part of the Roman Catholic Church.
"Our only plan of action remains as it has been for the past year, as affirmed by our Diocesan Convention in November 2007. The Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth intends to realign with an orthodox Province as a constituent member of the worldwide Anglican Communion.
"By God’s grace, we will continue to work and pray for the unity of the one holy catholic and apostolic church."
The Rt. Rev. Jack Leo Iker
Bishop of Fort Worth
August 12, 2008