On December 8th, 2007 at its annual convention, the Diocese of San Joaquin took an historic step and voted to disassociate from The Episcopal Church.
The presenting issue, the ordination of openly homosexual clergy, is also a presenting issue in the current exodus from the Presbyterian Church in the USA by congregations and entire presbyteries which see this issue as indicative of the more foundational issue of the abandonment of the authority of the Bible.
Similarly, the American Baptist Churches Pacific Southwest Region withdrew from fellowship with the ABC(USA) in 2006, and the Southern Baptist Convention withdrew from the Baptist World Alliance a year earlier over the ABC(USA)’s refusal “to deal with the acceptance of churches with lax policies on homosexuality in the denomination,” according to the Baptist Press.
Stories like these force us to ask the question, “When is a Christian required to break fellowship with an ostensibly Christian body?”
As a case study in how one group of churches viewed their responsibility to the truth of Scripture, Host Lindsay Brooks discusses the Diocese of San Joaquin’s disassociation with the Episcopal Church with John-David Schofield, the IVth Bishop of the Diocese of San Joaquin who retired on October 22, 2011, and the Pastor of St. John Anglican Church in Petaluma, CA, Rev. David Miller.