TLC: Bishop MacBurney Issues An Apology
The Rt. Rev. Edward H. MacBurney, retired Bishop of Quincy, and Wicks Stephens, his lawyer, have reached an agreement under which Bishop MacBurney voluntarily submitted to discipline.
Last January, the Title IV [disciplinary] Review Committee issued a presentment against Bishop MacBurney for allegedly leading a service of confirmation at a congregation which had left the Diocese of San Diego in order to join the Anglican Church of the Southern Cone in South America. Bishop MacBurney was subsequently inhibited, or prohibited, from functioning in any way as a priest or bishop, pending an ecclesiastical trial which had been scheduled to be held in November.
In her “Sentence Upon Voluntary Submission to Discipline” dated Sept. 9, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori removed the inhibition against Bishop MacBurney and admonished him “not to repeat the actions which caused the presentment to be brought against him.” She also directed him to apologize “in writing to the Bishop of San Diego for not respecting his authority as the bishop of that diocese.”
Bishop James Mathes of San Diego, who originally had brought the complaint against Bishop MacBurney, said he was satisfied with the outcome. The process “held a bishop of the church accountable to his colleagues and this was a good thing,” Bishop Mathes told Episcopal News Service. He said Bishop MacBurney’s willingness to apologize for his actions “provided us a way to provide forgiveness.”
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