Saturday, January 10, 2009

Episcopal church sues anti-gay Pittsburgh parishes for $20M

Posted on
Reported by Associated Press
January 9, 2009

(Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) Episcopal leaders in Pittsburgh went to court Thursday seeking to recover $20 million in assets they believe were wrongfully taken when the conservative branches split from the liberal diocese in October.

The Diocese of Pittsburgh, which oversees the 20 local parishes that stayed with the U.S. Episcopal Church, said the breakaway group has no legal right to the assets since it is no longer part of the denomination.

Spokesman Rich Creehan said the church petitioned the Court of Common Pleas for the assets after its requests for them were “ignored” by the breakaway parishes.

The breakaway conservatives, who also call themselves the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh, said they have a right to some of the assets because they helped develop them before the split.

“We would love to sit down and work out a mediated division where everyone involved has access to a portion of the assets because we think that’s fair,” said the Rev. Peter Frank, a spokesman for the conservative diocese.

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