Bolivian Ordains Anglican Clerics; Episcopalians Take the Rare Step to Plant Traditional Churchesin D.C. and Baltimore

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PITTSBURGH - Conservative Episcopalians brought in a South American bishop yesterday to ordain three deacons and a priest to establish four traditional Anglican churches, including one in Baltimore and one in the District.

The move - considered allowable, but highly unusual in church law - was the latest step toward establishing a church parallel to the existing 2.2-million-member Episcopal Church because of objections to the 2003 consecration of a homosexual bishop.

"It's hard to know how seriously to take this. There's some dispute as to whether this will be an Anglican church," said Jim Naughton, spokesman for Episcopal Diocese of Washington.

Bolivian Bishop Frank Lyons consecrated William Haley, 36, a former youth minister at the Falls Church Episcopal - Virginia's largest Episcopal parish - as a deacon.

Mr. Haley will head up St. Brendan's, which will not be part of the U.S. Episcopal Church but instead will be an Anglican parish meeting at First New Hope Baptist Church in the District. He will be working in the territory of the Rt. Rev. John B. Chane, the Episcopal bishop of Washington, but without his permission.

The new priest, Eliot Winks, 40, will head up the new Anglican Church of the Resurrection near Towson, Md. Although the church is geographically in the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland, it will not answer to Maryland Bishop Robert Ihloff, but instead to the Anglican bishop of Chile, the Most Rev. Hector Zavala.

The two other men will serve in North Carolina and Connecticut under the Bolivian bishop.

The ordinations, which were kept secret until late yesterday morning, included a fifth candidate from Christ the Redeemer Episcopal Church in Centreville, Va. His ordination was withdrawn at the last minute.

Mr. Haley, a graduate of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary near Boston now living in the District, said his new church will serve the poor.

"We hope to be a redemptive presence in a city known for its brokenness," he said. When a reporter asked him if he was "the new face of a realigned Anglican Communion," he said, "I hope I am the new face of integrating orthodox theology and social action. …