The Episcopal Diocese of Chicago and The Episcopal Church have reached a settlement with the Diocese of Quincy in the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) and 15 parishes and missions in that diocese over real property, other assets and church records that were part of the former Episcopal Diocese of Quincy and The Episcopal Church in 2008.
The settlement, the terms of which are confidential, includes property at issue in a suit filed in 2013 in a circuit court in Peoria.
“I give thanks for your perseverance and courage through the past eleven years, and I am grateful that this settlement will benefit God’s mission in the Peoria Deanery for many years to come,” Bishop Jeffrey D. Lee of Chicago wrote in a letter to the people of the deanery. “Participating in your ministry has been one of the great joys of my time as bishop of Chicago, and I continue to rejoice at your commitment to our beloved Episcopal Church and the communities and people you serve,” added Lee, who will retire in August.
The congregations of St. James, Griggsville; St. James, Lewistown; the Episcopal Church of St. George, Macomb; and All Saints, Rock Island will benefit from the settlement funds, Lee said. Other funds recovered in the settlement will be held in the endowments of the Diocese of Chicago for the benefit of the Peoria Deanery.
With this settlement, the Diocese of Chicago has two remaining legal matters with congregations in the ACNA Diocese of Quincy. Those concern the property and assets of Grace Episcopal Church in Galesburg and Christ Church in Moline, whose Episcopal congregation is now part of All Saints, Rock Island.
“We hope that these ongoing proceedings will also conclude by bringing us to a place of reconciliation and mutual respect in Christ,” Lee said.
A majority of the clergy and members of the former Episcopal Diocese of Quincy voted to leave The Episcopal Church in November 2008 over issues including the church’s decision to include gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender members more fully in its life and ministry. The remaining members of the continuing Episcopal Diocese of Quincy reunited with the Diocese of Chicago in September 2013 and form its Peoria Deanery.
The Episcopal Diocese of Chicago includes more than 34,000 Episcopalians in congregations and chaplaincies across northern and west central Illinois. The Episcopal Bishop of Chicago is the Rt. Rev. Jeffrey D. Lee. To learn more, visit www.episcopalchicago.org.