Episcopal Splinter Group to Ban Gay, Female Clergy

Ex-Pittsburgh bishop to lead new church
By Ambreen Ali,  Newser User
Posted Jun 22, 2009 1:25 AM CDT
Bishop Robert W. Duncan Jr. is expected to become the archbishop of the Anglican Church in North America.   (AP Photo/Judi Bottoni)
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(Newser) – Hundreds of former Episcopal parishes are meeting to form the Anglican Church in North America this week, parting ways with their previous church to ban women and gays in the clergy. Robert Duncan, the former bishop of Pittsburgh, is leading the congregation of 300—including 50 bishops—and is expected to become the new church's archbishop, USA Today reports.

The new group claims to represent 100,000 followers and calls itself a province, just like others among the Anglican Communion. But it may take years for the world's third largest denomination to recognize them. The Episcopal Church had become divided over the elections of a woman and an openly gay bishop in recent years. The new church's preamble blasts "those who have embraced erroneous teaching."