In the Dec. 9 article, "Episcopal parishes split with diocese," it is stated that the situation in the Diocese of San Joaquin is a "schism within a schism." This is untrue: The three parishes mentioned in the article, Holy Family Episcopal Church (Fresno, whose rector is Father Keith Axberg), St. John's Episcopal Church (Lodi) and St. Anne's Episcopal Church (Stockton), are not in schism. These parishes, and Remain Episcopal (formed to maintain the unity of the Episcopal Church in this diocese), are instead rejecting schism.
The actions taken on Nov. 2, at the Diocesan Convention are schismatic because they renounce the ties of this diocese to the Episcopal Church. Those Episcopal parishes who disagree (either publicly or privately) are simply remaining faithful to the Episcopal Church, which welcomes a wide diversity of theological perspectives.
The Episcopal Church is alive and well across the nation -- there are more than 7,500 thriving parishes in this county. There are many of us within the Diocese of San Joaquin who intend to remain within the Episcopal Church, and will work with the national Episcopal Church to maintain its presence in the Valley.
Member, Holy Family