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Notes on the Quincy property trial

Notes on the Quincy property trial

Mike Romkey, associate managing editor of The Dispatch and The Rock Island Argus, and member of Trinity Anglican Church, Rock Island, IL, spent a day in the recent two-week trial between the Anglican Diocese of Quincy (ACNA) and The Episcopal Church. His notes have appeared in Quad Cities Online. A taste:

This trial will determine who owns the Anglican Diocese of Quincy’s churches and endowments — the local Anglicans or TEC.

[TEC lead attorney] Beers spent time questioning his expert witness, Bruce Mullin, Ph.D. Mullin teaches church history at General Theological Seminary in New York City, a seminary accredited by the Episcopal Church. …

Mullin’s testimony centered on a central question: Is the Episcopal Church a hierarchal church? If it is, TEC’s argument runs, individuals are free to leave, but the constituent organizational parts — parishes or, in the case of this trial, a diocese — may not.

During later questioning by Quincy representative Alan Runyan, a lawyer from the Diocese of South Carolina, Mullin confirmed he had been paid $900,000 for testimony going back to 2007, adding that he has an arrangement to be paid $15,000 per month to even out the payments.

…Judge Ortbal said at one point with certain resignation while ruling on an objection, “This trial has been nothing but opinions.”

You can read it all here.


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Paul Woodrum

My premonition is that neither 815 nor Chelsea Square appreciate this much transparency. If this is what TEC pays an expert witness, how much are the lawyers costing? and what is the cost/benefit ratio?

William R. MacKaye

Bruce Mullin is already receiving a full-time church salary as a professor at General Theological Seminary, a job that carries with it (or at least used to) free housing in New York City. If he’s pocketing another $180,000 a year testifying as an expert witness for the church, I find that pretty troubling. Most of us lay people, and Mullin is a layman, contribute our expertise outside of work hours to the church for free. Fees like that a far more than honoraria.

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