The Rt. Rev. Edward L. Salmon Jr. died Wednesday after a battle with cancer. Salmon, 83, served from 1990-2008 as the 13th bishop of the Diocese of South Carolina. Salmon had been an opponent of marriage equality and was one of nine bishops who were named in a disciplinary complaint for supporting schismatic dioceses in 2012.
Seven bishops filed an amicus brief with the Texas Supreme Court supporting the faction led by former Bishop Jack Iker in its attempt to maintain control of church property and assets. Iker’s group broke from the Episcopal Church in November 2008. The bishops who signed the brief include three retired bishops, Maurice M. Benitez, John W. Howe, and D. Bruce MacPherson; one suffragan, Paul E. Lambert of Dallas; and three diocesan bishops, William H. Love of Albany, Daniel H. Martins of Springfield and James M. Stanton of Dallas.
MacPherson and retired bishops Edward L. Salmon, Jr., and Peter H. Beckwith signed an affidavit opposing summary judgment in favor of the Episcopal Diocese of Quincy, which is attempting to recover property and assets from a breakaway faction that left the church in November 2008.
The Episcopal Church in South Carolina (the continuing diocese) acknowledged and honored Salmon as an important part of its history. The Rt. Rev. Charles G. vonRosenberg, bishop of the diocese, said in a news release that when he served as bishop of East Tennessee, he and Salmon were colleagues in the House of Bishops. Salmon, he said, “had a unique leadership style among bishops, and he could be counted on to offer his particular point of view on most matters. His perspectives and personality were assets among his fellow bishops. He will certainly be missed.”
The breakaway diocese in South Carolina, led by Mark Lawrence also remembered Salmon. In a press release, Lawrence said that Salmon “was a champion of the faith; a tireless churchman, whose principled wisdom, sagacious humor and razor wit were legendary and widely loved by the casual acquaintance as well as by his family and longtime friends.”
A Memorial Eucharist for Salmon will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday in Grace Church Cathedral, 98 Wentworth St. The Rev. Dow Sanderson will be the preacher.
The breakaway Diocese of South Carolina will also hold a memorial service at the Cathedral of St. Luke and St. Paul in Charleston. Details are still being arranged.