From the ACC weekly update. What would Jesus do? Probably not sue a local parish, confiscate the property then sell it to Muslims. There must be a special place in Hell awaiting these folks.
New York: TEC sells church to Islamic Center
Source: Front Page Magazine
March 30, 2010
By Faith McDonald
During its peak as a thriving little manufacturing center filled with stately homes and mansions, Binghamton, New York, was nicknamed the "Parlor City." Today many of those same mansions are funeral parlors. History appears to be repeating itself in modern day Binghamton. For some 130 years, the city was the home to the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd. But recently, the Episcopal Diocese of Central New York sold the pretty little church building on Conklin Avenue to the Islamic Awareness Center.
In selling Church of the Good Shepherd's building to the Muslim group, the Episcopal Diocese of Central New York was killing two birds with one stone. First, they placed an enormous obstacle in the path of the now-Anglican Church of the Good Shepherd. Second, they offered a big inter-faith embrace to their Muslim brothers and sisters who needed a property from which to extend the Dawah (the invitation to Islam). That's a good day's work for a diocese that has been losing church members for the past ten years or more.
Unlike the diocese, the Church of the Good Shepherd has grown every year under the care of Episcopal priest team of husband and wife, the Reverends Matthew and Anne Kennedy. But in 2007, Good Shepherd made the difficult decision to join the dozens of congregations that were leaving the Episcopal Church while remaining in the wider Anglican Communion of which the Episcopal Church is a part . These parishes are referred to as departing churches, but they argue that it is the denomination that has departed - from orthodox, biblical Christianity. The Kennedys were deposed (ceased to have authority as priests) in the Episcopal Church, and received as priests in the Anglican Church. And the Diocese of Central New York began an aggressive lawsuit against the church for all of the property....
On January 8, 2009, the lawsuit was decided in the diocese's favor. The diocese was "entitled to immediate possession" of the church building and to the rectory, home to the Kennedys' growing family since 2002. The Kennedys and all of the people of Good Shepherd hurriedly removed their property from the church building as they were warned that the diocese did indeed intend to take immediate possession. At the same time, the church was trying to find another place to worship and to host their soup kitchen for the homeless, the Shepherd's Bowl. The monsignor of the nearby St. John's and Andrew's Catholic Church opened his parish kitchen to the feeding program so that the meals for the homeless would not be interrupted. But for the first week, attendance was scant. Signs on the old building directing the homeless to the new soup kitchen had been taken down, apparently, by the Diocese when they were padlocking the church to keep out the Anglicans....
Although the Diocese of Central New York refused to sell the Church of the Good Shepherd to the Anglicans for whom it had been home, they were happy to sell it to a Muslim group for $50,000, a third of the amount that Good Shepherd had offered. According to the Rev. Tony Seel, the Diocese even added a legal caveat to the sale stating that the new owners of the property could never re-sell the building to the original congregation.
The property had been standing vacant and padlocked for many months, when on March 17, 2010, Kennedy passed by his former church building. He saw a crane removing the cross from the bell tower. The former Good Shepherd Church had red doors, symbolizing the blood of Christ as well as the blood of the martyrs. Now the doors had been painted green, and the new owners had covered over the glass that had formed the horizontal arms of a cross-shaped window on the church door. Over the back door was a new sign that said "Islamic Awareness Center."
The former Church of the Good Shepherd is now a "Dawah organization," with representatives ready to meet with schools, parent-teacher associations, and other community organizations to introduce Islam and Muslims. The Islamic Awareness Center states that it will "explain Islam's message of peace, share Qur'an and Hadith, and answer questions." It also offers "programs suitable for children using a puppet show," it adds....
The rest of the article may be found here.