The Episcopal Church’s Diocese of Fort Worth has signaled its intention to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. In an emergency motion [PDF] filed March 25, the diocese has asked the Texas Supreme Court to stay an earlier mandate.
In a supporting document [PDF] for the motion, the diocese’s attorneys write that the U.S. Supreme Court may take an interest in the case because it “has consistently denied petitions where the Episcopal Church prevailed (four times since 2009, including the recent Falls Church case).”
The attorneys add: “The present case will be the first to arrive at the U.S. Supreme Court where the prevailing party was the breakaway faction taking property that it repeatedly swore to protect for The Episcopal Church.”
The Rt. Rev. Jack L. Iker, Bishop of the Diocese of Fort Worth affiliated with the Anglican Church in North America, had encouraged the Episcopal Church’s diocese to drop the case when the Texas Supreme Court ruled against it on March 21.
“We are greatly relieved by the finality of the Court’s ruling,” he said. “TEC’s rehearing strategy has delayed us from moving on with this case by more than six months and at the cost of several thousands of dollars to oppose it. My advice is that TEC cut its losses and get on with their life without the Diocese of Fort Worth. Their litigation strategy has failed.”
Image of U.S. Supreme Court by kconnors, via morgueFile