March 19, 2011

Planning Update: Litigate? Negotiate? Relocate?

Dear Parish Family,

This Lenten season we are living through an uncertain time for our parish church. I hope you came to one of the informational meetings we held to discuss the potential threat to our property. The Episcopal Church continues to insist that our property is their property and they are pressing their claim against us. We said, at those meetings, that our options were limited but clear. We could litigate, relocate, or negotiate. We also said that our immediate goal was clear. We would like to be faithful to God’s call and if possible we would like to remain in our present building. In order to best serve those goals, we wanted to gather the information and do the planning necessary to be well prepared to exercise any one of our options if and when it became prudent to do so.

I want to report to you that we are well on our way to accomplishing those initial goals. We have begun to explore the litigation option--enough said about that at present. A relocation team is meeting to develop a detailed and implementable plan for quickly moving our operations to another facility should we be forced into it. (we hope and pray that this is a remote possibility) The relocation team will also explore long-term options. The question they are attempting to answer is, what is the future that the Lord may be calling us into. Finally, we have met with what we hope will be the core of our negotiating team and we have discussed how we might begin to seek a settlement with the other side.

This is all very blessed news! Within a few days I hope to be able to report to you that we are ready, regardless of what the future may hold. I am sorry that all this is so sketchy at the moment. As we are able to release greater detail we will. For now, I wanted you to know that things are moving along. Our goal is to do God's will with integrity and we hope that means remaining in our present building. We also hope it means as little disruption as possible. We are not naïve however. This present dispute has real potential for harm to our current operations. We are, therefore, moving forward with contingency planning so that regardless of what may confront us we can continue to proclaim the good news in Jesus Christ and advance the Kingdom of God.

Thanks for your prayers on behalf of the parish, the parish leadership and me. It is pretty apparent that God is hearing you. I have personally felt bouyed up and carried forward in a way that can only be explained in supernatural terms. As always, call me if you have any concerns you would like to share. Our Lord is able to accomplish all things and he has promised that He will be in the midst of our current circumstances leading us into the new life He has prepared for us.

Blessings to you all, Fr. Scott

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