The New York Times reports:
“I just feel a tremendous loyalty to this church, and I am confused about this situation,” said Frances R. Maclean, 85, a member of Christ Church for 55 years who saw her children baptized and then married in its century-old chapel. “What is this business about Uganda?”
“As a state body we have to abstain from any involvement in religious disputes,” said John Witte Jr., director of the study of law and religion at Emory University in Atlanta, and “every property dispute has a doctrinal dimension that a court can’t touch.”
Judges must decide if individual parishes own the buildings where the members worship, or if those parishes are holding their property in trust for the larger church hierarchy, an arrangement many denominations have codified in their canons.
At Christ Church, the split has created two congregations, both of which are claiming the name and assets of the parish.