U.S. Supreme Court Ruling Leaves Falls Church Property in The Episcopal Church
On March 10, the U.S. Supreme Court denied the petition for writ of certiorari filed by a breakaway faction from the historic Episcopal congregation of Falls Church, Virginia. The order makes final the April 18, 2013 decision of the Supreme Court of Virginia that the continuing Falls Church Episcopal, founded in 1732, and not the breakaway faction that left in 2006, retains the church property. This case joins the long line of cases in which the nation’s highest court has consistently refused to review decisions of state courts which upheld the right of The Episcopal Church and its dioceses and congregations to retain the historic names and property of its churches for the ministry of The Episcopal Church when breakaway factions choose to leave their Church.
The Rt. Rev. Rayford B. High, Jr., bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth, stated, “We in Fort Worth share the joy of our brothers and sisters in Falls Church and the Diocese of Virginia that their long litigation season is finally ended. We commend them for their patient, faithful stewardship of the property and ministries entrusted to their care as part of The Episcopal Church.”
A copy of the Virginia Supreme Court decision is HERE:
A statement from the Diocese of Virginia is HERE:
A statement from the Episcopal News Service is HERE: