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1. Eight churches, including two of the country's most prominent, vote to leave
The big religion news today is the votes of eight northern Virginia Episcopal churches to leave the diocese of Virginia. The votes at two of the country's most prominent Episcopal parishes—colonial-era Truro Church and The Falls Church—weren't even close, with at least 90 percent voting to align with the Church of Nigeria. It's a significant development in the long story of the upheaval in the Anglican Communion. Those who want to follow it closely would do well to bookmark titusonenine, Stand Firm, Classical Anglican Net News, or any of the many Anglican blogs out there. We're watching, but we're not going to link to every press release, statement, photo, and doodle coming out of this debate. Bottom line: The Episcopal Church is breaking up, and it's about to have a major fight over property ownership.

2. More Haggard fallout An effort at New Life Church in Colorado Springs to "ensure the leadership … is clean" has resulted in the resignation of an executive staff member, The Denver Post reported today. "Christopher Beard, who headed [twentyfourseven,] a ministry that trained young adults in leadership skills, stepped down Friday after admitting to 'a series of decisions displaying poor judgment, including one incident of sexual misconduct several years ago,'" the Post reported, quoting associate pastor Rob Brendle. Beard is also a former psychotherapist. In other Haggard news, the Post reported that the former National Association of Evangelicals president was due to narrate a video called "What Would Jesus Do?" for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. The Post also had news over the weekend about Paul Barnes, another ...

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Exodus from the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia
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December 2006

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