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In the fall of 1990, Barry Stopfel was ordained a deacon in the Diocese of Newark. Stopfel is gay and, at the time of his ordination, was living "in a sexual partnership" with another man. The assistant bishop of Newark, the Rt. Rev. Walter Righter (photo here), was facing a church court over his decision to ordain the gay man. On May 15, 1996, an Episcopal Church court dismissed charges against Righter. The Court held that neither the doctrine nor the discipline of the Church currently prohibit the ordination of a non-celibate homosexual person living in a committed relationship.

A few times a week, I get a friendly message from someone expressing their concern that they perceive this page to have an editorial bias. I've written this brief note to help address those concerns.

I can understand the frustration. But please understand that this website is not an official church document and I am not performing the role of a journalist. I have not sought to "cover" the trial, as much as offer pointers to others who are covering it. Think of this page, and indeed the full Anglicans Online! website, as an index to a book, not the book's content itself.

Perhaps the coverage which is out there is unbalanced -- it's a frustration I've felt as well -- but I only have time to point people to what's out there. If more resources become available

from the "other side" (blech, I hate calling these "sides") then those links will be featured along side of other views.

It's my hope that offering some of the more solid resources -- like the text of the presentment, official church news releases, and so forth -- that those resources would add value to the information on the site.

A side note: Of the messages I receive which offer concerns that the site appears to be unbalanced in opinion, the running total of people who think the site is left-wing and those who think it's right-wing runs about 50/50. Caveat reader.

Tod Maffin
Anglicans Online!