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Fort Worth is 4th Episcopal diocese to break away
The Associated Press
FORT WORTH, Texas
The conservative Diocese of Fort Worth is splitting from the Episcopal Church in a long-running debate over how to interpret the Bible.
It is the fourth diocese to secede since 2003, when the denomination consecrated the first openly gay bishop. The other three breakaway dioceses are Pittsburgh; Quincy, Ill., and San Joaquin (wah-KEEN) in Fresno, Calif.
Fort Worth Episcopalians voted on the move Saturday. Their decision could set off a complex legal battle over who owns local church property.
Fort Worth Episcopalians who oppose withdrawal say that five parishes and hundreds of parishioners will stay with the national denomination.
The Diocese of Fort Worth serves about 19,000 people.