WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Partial Settlement in Long-Running Church Dispute

Feb 6, 2020

Eleven years after some members of the Episcopal Church in the Quad Cities and western Illinois voted to leave and join the Anglican Church, a dispute over property has been partially settled.

Jeffrey Lee, the Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago, announced the diocese has recovered some of the property, assets, and records that belonged to the former Episcopal Diocese of Quincy.

When that diocese split in 2008, and some congregations joined the Anglican Church, the two sides went to court over who owned what.

In this week’s announcement, Bishop Lee said most of the settlement is confidential, but there will be what he called "direct" benefits for Episcopal congregations in Rock Island, Macomb, Lewistown, and Griggsville.

Still to be settled is ownership of Grace Episcopal Church in Galesburg and Christ Church in Moline - whose members moved to All Saints in Rock Island.

At the time of the split in 2008, the former Diocese of Quincy had 24 churches in 19 counties, including the Illinois Quad Cities, Galesburg, Quincy, and Peoria.

The division stemmed from interpretation of the Bible and scripture, but also the ordination of a gay bishop in New Hampshire and the ordination of women.