D. Lorne Coyle, rector of Trinity Vero Beach (Diocese of Central Florida) speaks to his congregation on the decision to leave the Episcopal Church, July 1. Listen to the whole thing here (click on the sermon for April 27, 2008). He talks about the change from the decision to remain with the property, to the change to leave the property after Bishop John W. Howe changed his mind.
Originally they had a settle of $5 million. Lorne reports that while Bishop Howe proposed the initial plan, he was the one that rejected it. He changed his mind. He had to "re-examine" his own stated position which caused him to have an "about-face" and reject the very plan he had offered.
The rector and vestry of Trinity decided not to sue for the property, but to leave quietly and peacefully - if all the parties agree. So far two out of the three parties have agreed: The Vestry of Trinity and the Executive Board of the Diocese of Central Florida. The final group to agree will be those who remain in the property as Episcopalians. They still need to organize and vote, which is scheduled to take place next Sunday.
The rest of the proposed agreement remains confidential until there is full ratification.
Listen to the whole thing here. Make sure you hear what Lorne says is the primary fiduciary duty of the clergy and leadership of a church. And please pray for this lighthouse church as they take the next steps.
The Vestry of Trinity, Vero Beach.