Churches unite to help Christians in the Middle East
THE Vatican has announced that the Roman Catholic and Russian Orthodox Churches have come together for the first time to provide humanitarian aid to Christians in the Middle East, and to take “urgent measures” to rebuild churches damaged during the war in Syria. The RC Church linked the news to the meeting between Pope Francis and the Orthodox Patriarch Kirill of Moscow in Havana earlier this year (Comment, 19 February; News, 12 February).
US diocese of San Joaquin loses property appeal
THE diocese of San Joaquin in the Anglican Church of North America has lost its appeal against a judgment, issued by the Fresno Superior Court, ordering the diocese to return 27 church properties to a reaffiliated group of Episcopalians (News, 14 March 2014). The diocese, which was one of the most conservative in the Episcopal Church, separated in 2007 because of long-running disagreements over the ordination of women and the blessing of same-sex relationships (News, 4 July 2008; 14 December 2007). The Californian Court of Appeal upheld the judgment this month, although the defendants may seek a re-hearing within 30 days.
Correction: This story originally stated that the diocese was in the Episcopal Church, not the Anglican Church of North America. It was corrected on 18 April.
Bishop offers diocesan land for homeless
THE Anglican diocese of British Columbia is looking for more land to expand the tent city that has sprung up opposite Christ Church Cathedral in Victoria, Canada, the Bishop, the Rt Revd Logan McMenamie, has said. The tent city — called “Super InTent City” by its residents — was set up in October 2015, after a group of homeless people pitched camp on the courthouse lawn. Bishop McMenamie told the Anglican Journal that the diocese had been looking at its property and land to see where more micro-housing could be built.