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Church Property

Court rules that the property of a dissident church belonged to a national church body


A Missouri court ruled that the property of a dissident church belonged to a national church body with which it was affiliated.

The local church opposed a 1984 resolution of the national church which permitted the ordination of women into the priesthood. After efforts to work out their differences failed, the national church attempted in install a new minister. When the congregation overwhelmingly voted to retain their original minister, the national church had the locks to the church property changed, barricades erected, and notices posted to keep people off the property. The congregation proceeded to have keys made to the new locks, removed the barricades, and held services on the premises.

The national church then sought and obtained a court order banning the minister "and those acting in concert with him" from entering onto church property and from in any way disrupting the worship ...

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  • May 1, 1989

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