Legal News

Legal News

Keep up to date with legal news.

In addition to news articles below, the Texas judicial system maintains a list of each action on the case related to our diocese on their page, along with links to documents.

Click here to view the court’s records related to this case.

Standing in solidarity

Bishop Scott Mayer has shared a letter from the Rev. Celia Ellery, rector of Good Shepherd Episcopal Church in San Angelo. The letter is especially meaningful in that Ellery and her congregation understand very clearly what the situation is here. In 2006, a questionable majority of the members of Good Shepherd voted to leave The Episcopal Church to affiliate with the Diocese of Uganda, Africa; however, they refused the order of Bishop C. Wallis Ohl, then the bishop of Northwest…

The presiding bishop and president of the House of Deputies stand with us

Both Presiding Bishop Michael Curry and the Rev. Gay Jennings, president of the House of Deputies, have sent assurances of their affection, support and prayers. Michael Curry’s letter Curry wrote: Dear Bishop Mayer, Clergy and People of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth, I recall with great fondness the time not so long ago when I was blessed to make a pastoral visitation with you. We worshipped God together, visited several of your ministries, had opportunity for conversation and fellowship.…

Episcopalians regret Texas Supreme Court decision

This is the statement issued by Bishop Mayer and other leaders of the diocese in the wake of of the May 22, 2020, decision of the Supreme Court of Texas. ——————————— The Rt. Rev. Scott Mayer, provisional bishop of Fort Worth; the Standing Committee, and the Board of Trustees of the Corporation of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth are saddened by the May 22, 2020, decision of the Texas Supreme Court that failed to uphold the opinion of the…

Bishop Mayer letter to the diocese in wake of Supreme Court decision

This is the letter Bishop Scott Mayer wrote in the wake of the Supreme Court of Texas decision issued on May 22, 2020. ————————– Dear beloveds, On May 22, 2020, the Texas Supreme Court’s decision went against us. This decision is a disappointment to us all, but as followers of Jesus Christ, we live in hope. Read the decision Presiding Bishop Michael B. Curry  joins me in acknowledging our disappointment and urging all of us to be gentle with one…

Texas Supreme Court hears oral arguments

The Supreme Court of Texas heard oral arguments on Thursday, December 5, 2019. Both sides had 20 minutes to present their arguments and answer questions from the justices. We anticipate an opinion to be issued sometime between March 2020 and the end of June 2020. “I am grateful for the presence of those who traveled to Austin to be present for today’s hearing,” said Bishop Scott Mayer. “Now we await the deliberations of the justices. As we do so, let…

How to watch the oral arguments via video

Oral arguments before the Supreme Court of Texas are live streamed. Oral arguments in our case will be heard at 9 am Thursday, December 5, 2019. To watch the live stream of the arguments Thursday morning, go to this link.  In the left hand menu, click on “Oral Arguments,” underlined in the photo below. That will take you to this page.   Once there, in the center of the page under Video Recordings, click on the link (underlined in the…

Texas Supreme Court will hold oral argument December 5

The Supreme Court of Texas will hold oral arguments in our case on December 5, 2019, in Austin. Bishop Scott Mayer has invited Episcopalians to pray for the best outcome in our case in the weeks leading up and during the oral arguments. Unless otherwise noted, the information below is from the website of the Supreme Court of Texas. “The Supreme Court normally holds oral arguments once a month on three consecutive days. On each day that oral arguments are…

Texas Supreme Court to review Court of Appeals opinion

On Friday, August 30, 2019, the Texas Supreme Court agreed to hear oral argument on both (1) the breakaway parties’ petition for review the Fort Worth Court of Appeals April 2018 opinion in favor of the loyal Episcopalians of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth as well as (2) our conditional cross-petition for review. The conditional cross-petition asserted additional reasons why we should prevail in this litigation. The oral argument will be held at 9 am December 5, 2019. The time allotted to…

Texas Supreme Court to consider briefing; petitions for review still under consideration

On Friday, February 8, 2019, the Texas Supreme Court said it would like to consider briefing on the merits before deciding whether to take up the breakaways parties’ petition for review of the Fort Worth Court of Appeals April 2018 opinion in favor of the loyal Episcopalians of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth and our conditional cross-petition for review. The conditional cross-petition asserted additional grounds to prevail in the litigation. The petitions for review are still under consideration by the Supreme Court.…

Second Court of Appeals opinion favors Episcopal parties

On Thursday, April 5, 2018, the Fort Worth Court of Appeals issued a 178-page opinion in favor of the loyal Episcopalians of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth.  In a decision authored by the Chief Justice, the Court of Appeals reversed the trial court’s 2015 judgment for the breakaway parties and held that the loyal Episcopalians are entitled to control both the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth and its Corporation. Noting that the parties agreed that the Corporation held legal…

Bishop asks legal team to respond to misinformation

As you may know, last week the Supreme Court of South Carolina ruled against the former bishop and others attempting to take a diocese out of The Episcopal Church while claiming Episcopal Church property. And while we rejoice with the Episcopalians there, we also hold all involved in our prayers. We, better than most, understand that all litigation takes a toll on all involved. Our legal team notes that South Carolina was one of the few states cited by the breakaways…

South Carolina Supreme Court rules property belongs to Episcopal Church

The South Carolina Supreme Court has said that nearly all the property involved in litigation between a breakaway group and The Episcopal Church belongs to The Episcopal Church. The Court heard the case nearly two years ago. Read several stories here. Read the South Carolina Supreme Court opinion here. Bishop Skip Adams of South Carolina said, “We are grateful for this decision and for the hard work of the court in rendering it. We also give thanks to God for the…

Court of Appeals hears arguments

On Tuesday, April 19, 2016, the Fort Worth Court of Appeals heard oral argument in Episcopal Church v. Salazar. An audio recording of the argument may be found here. A decision is expected in the coming months. Provisional Bishop J. Scott Mayer and assisting bishops Rayford High and Sam Hulsey were present in the packed courtroom, along with many other people from the diocese. Bishop Mayer said, “I was very impressed with the depth and clarity of the case as…

Episcopal Parties file appellate briefs in the Fort Worth Court of Appeals

On Thursday, December 3, 2015, the Episcopal Parties filed their appellate briefs in the Fort Worth Court of Appeals. These briefs explain why the 141st District Court’s July 24, 2015 Final Judgment is error and unconstitutional, and why the court of appeals should render judgment in favor of the Episcopal Parties. The 141st District Court’s Final Judgment violates the First Amendment and instructions from the Texas Supreme Court by effectively placing a bishop defrocked by The Episcopal Church in control…

Update regarding Supersedeas Order

On August 18, 2015, the Hon. John P. Chupp signed an agreed supersedeas order in the diocesan case pending in the 141st District Court. The terms of the order are HERE. The required cash deposit was timely made by the Episcopal parties on Thursday, August 27. The case proceeds on appeal to the Fort Worth Court of Appeals.

Judge grants breakaway parties’ motion

On Wednesday, June 10, 2015, the Hon. John P. Chupp granted the Third Motion for Partial Summary Judgment (All Saints’) of the defendant breakaway ACNA parties and denied the Supplemental Motion for Partial Summary Judgment (All Saints’) of the plaintiff Episcopal Parties. In the next few days the parties will confer on a final judgment to be signed by the judge, to include the rulings on March 2 and June 10. The entry of that judgment will set the stage for appeals by the plaintiff…