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Former Church COO Stacy Sauls suing the Episcopal Church over his dismissal

Former Church COO Stacy Sauls suing the Episcopal Church over his dismissal

The Presiding Bishop and President of the House of Deputies have issued a joint letter informing the Church Center staff about Bishop Saul’s intent to sue over his dismissal last year.

 

From ENS

[Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs press release] Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop Michael B. Curry and President of the House of Deputies the Rev. Gay Clark Jennings shared the following letter with the staff of the Episcopal Church on Feb. 8.


Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ:

Earlier this week, we informed Executive Council that Bishop Stacy Sauls has filed a lawsuit against the corporation of the Episcopal Church, called the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society (DFMS), and an unspecified number of unnamed defendants associated with the church. The suit concerns Bishop Sauls’ tenure as chief operating officer of the DFMS and his departure from that job.

As you may remember, Bishop Sauls served as chief operating officer from 2011 until December 2015, when he was placed on administrative leave. Bishop Sauls’ employment with the church ended in April 2016.

The Presiding Bishop, in consultation with legal counsel, tried his best to negotiate a severance with Bishop Sauls. We believe he made a good faith and compassionate offer, but that offer was not accepted. The Presiding Bishop, as a steward of church resources, felt that he could not go beyond that offer and explain it in good conscience to the church.

As officers of the church, we are not going to comment directly on pending litigation that involves the church. We have complete confidence in one another and in the staff, officers, and leaders of the Episcopal Church. We are united in our desire to resolve this suit as quickly and compassionately as possible, and we are committed to working together to create a church culture that follows the loving, liberating and life-giving way of Jesus.

Faithfully,

The Most Rev. Michael B. Curry

Presiding Bishop and Primate

The Rev. Gay Clark Jennings

President, House of Deputies

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Tim Kruse

I had forgotten that the bishop was an attorney prior to his clerical career. The Living Church article has a link to the suit he filed - it's rather remarkable in its accusations. Then again, there's the saying "It's not paranoia if they're really out to get you."

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Ann Fontaine

There is a link to the suit in the Café story too

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Ann Fontaine

In that category of no good deed goes unpunished. PB Curry's baptism of fire.

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John B. Chilton

From April 2016

"The investigation concluded that Bishop Stacy Sauls did not violate workplace policy, was unaware of the policy violations of the two staff members reporting to him, and operated within the scope of his office. No further investigation is warranted. Nevertheless, given the needs for staff leadership in light of my priorities for the direction of the Church, Bishop Sauls will not continue as Chief Operating Officer of the DFMS. Conversations are underway to implement this decision." ~ Bishop Curry

https://www.episcopalcafe.com/statement-from-pb-curry-on-the-independent-investigation-conclusion/

Rather than accept a generous severance, Sauls is using this as leverage to extort the Church. Sad.

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Philip B. Spivey

Sad, and has a ring of familiarity these days.

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Philip B. Spivey

I don't usually comment on intra-Church politics and polity because the former doesn't interest me and I don't understand most of the latter.

However, if he was fairly released for cause, this suit strikes me as a full-on attempt to extort the Church fueled by a grandiose sense of entitlement.

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Jay Croft

Severance pay for clergy is not uncommon. I know of one who was terminated from a parish but given about seven months' pay. It's not easy for a cleric to find new work quickly.

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