Court maintains freeze on San Joaquin Diocesan accounts

Updated to include Living Church story

The Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin has issued a press release (pdf) reproduced in full below:

August 26, 2008

Court maintains freeze on Episcopal Diocesan accounts pending litigation

In April the Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin filed a lawsuit to recover the property and the assets of the Diocese from its former bishop, John-David Schofield. As a result of this lawsuit several of the disputed investment accounts and related funds belonging to the Diocese were frozen.

In a hearing yesterday, the Court adopted a stipulation and ordered that these accounts may only be accessed with the consent of the Episcopal Diocese and/or by further order of the Court. Several of the affected accounts included those critical to the operations of the Evergreen Conference Center in Oakhurst (ECCO).

Bishop Jerry Lamb called the continuation of ECCO’s ministry “critical.” At the direction of the Episcopal Diocesan Council, the Chancellor for the Diocese and attorneys for the Episcopal Church contacted Mr. Schofield’s attorneys to negotiate terms for interim access to funds to support camp operations, including staff salaries, daily operations and certain capital improvements. According to the order and stipulation, the ECCO management will provide operational and financial information to the Episcopal Diocese and report to Diocesan Council.

Copies of the Court’s Order and Stipulation are posted on the diocesan website (www.diosanjoaquin.org).

The Court has set a tentative date of August 24, 2009 to hear the lawsuit.

Direct links to the Court’s Order (4 page pdf image file) and Stipulation (14 page pdf image file).

See this Living Church story on the court’s decision.

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