In an earlier post, I asked if Church Pension Fund Legacy money was being deployed for the Presiding Bishop's campaign of lawsuits against churches. I received this email today:
It was brought to my attention yesterday that a September 4th posting on the blog of the Northern Plains Anglicans asked the question “Is the Church Pension Fund deploying Legacy and Gift Funds to TEC’s lawsuit campaign against Christians?” The answer to this question is an unequivocal “no.” Would you be willing to advise me how I could communicate to your readers that no CPG funds of any kind have been used in such litigation? Actually, the funds in question were used to support CPG’s Fund for Special Assistance and certain programs related to CREDO. Thanks.
Church Pension Group
In other words, the Legacy Funds are being used appropriately for initiatives that directly benefit clergy and their families, part of the CPG's history of faithful and fruitful service to the church.
There remain open questions, however. In 2006 the Episcopal News Service itself reported that Pension Fund seed money was being deployed for the lawsuit campaign. That article is here. The quote:
Lexington Bishop Stacy Sauls gave the council a written report about the work of the House of Bishops Task Force on Property Disputes, whose work began at the September 2005 House of Bishops meeting and was sanctioned by the council earlier this year.
At that time, the council appropriated $100,000 for the task force's work. The group also has $25,000 available to it from the Church Pension Fund. The task force has not yet spent any of the money, according to the group's written report.
Keep in mind, that's a 2006 report - since then that money and a whole bunch more has gone into lawsuits against congregations and individuals all over the country.
So the questions remain: How much is being spent on lawsuits? From what church funds is the money being taken? And why is a small clique called "The Executive Council" given authority to redirect significant church money without any oversight or mandate from General Convention?