Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth The Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth
April 5 , 2011
Judge grants motion to sever and stay
proceedings, paving the way for appeal

Judge John Chupp has granted the motion of the Diocese and Corporation to sever and stay all further proceedings in the main lawsuit against us “pending a final determination of the severed claims through the appellate process.”

Read the Order here.

Read the Motion here.



April 27, 2011

At 2 p.m. tomorrow, April 28, Judge John Chupp will determine to what extent he will permit the local minority group aligned with TEC to conduct discovery with regard to the Motion to Set Supersedeas Bond* that has been filed by our attorneys. We are asking Judge Chupp to permit the Diocese and our 48 congregations to continue to have possession of the property while the case is being appealed, without the necessity of posting a large bond. The local minority group wants to take depositions and conduct other discovery, including inspections of the property, ostensibly for the purpose of developing evidence to support their argument that a substantial bond should be required as a condition for the continued possession of the property by the Diocese and its congregations during the appeal.

According to David Weaver, who is representing our congregations, "Since the plaintiffs likely will not prevail on the bond issue, they are attempting a flanking maneuver by seeking permission from the Court to allow them to engage in expensive discovery procedures."

Please keep the hearing in your prayers, and, if possible, plan to attend. The 141st District Court is located on the fourth floor of the Family Law Center on Weatherford Street in Fort Worth.

*A supersedeas bond is a deposit made during an appeal process when the case involves property and the party making the appeal wishes to delay full payment until the process concludes



Court moves closer to settling bond question

In a hearing Thursday afternoon, April 28, in the 141st District Court, the Hon. John Chupp postponed his previous order for the Diocese and Corporation to surrender all property, which would have taken effect on May 5, to an indefinite date in the future. He denied the plaintiffs' request for extensive additional discovery, limiting his mandate to the taking of a single deposition.

The judge approved only the request to take the deposition of Jane Parrott, the Diocese's Director of Finance. Her deposition is to be taken before Thursday, May 19, which Judge Chupp set as the next hearing date.

"They've got a right to do discovery," said the judge. "I think I have to let them do this."

But, in response to the plaintiffs' six-page statement of requests, he added, "we'll just have Mrs. Parrott [give her deposition]."

As discussion progressed, the judge set a limit of six hours for the deposition, authorizing only questions relating to the amount, if any, of a supersedeas bond which the Diocese may be ordered to post during the period of our appeal.

The parties will return to court on May 19, at which time the judge is expected to make his decision concerning the bond.



May 18, 2011

A hearing is scheduled for 2 p.m. tomorrow, May 19, in the 141st District Court, to determine the amount of the supersedeas bond that the Diocese will be required to post to avoid having to turn over our properties pending the appeal.

Following our Motion, filed in April, to set the bond at $0 and permit our congregations to continue using and caring for their property, the plaintiffs now have filed what appears to be a request for a bond of “at least $13.5 million.”

As always, please keep the hearing in your prayers, and, if possible, plan to attend. The court is located on the fourth floor of the Family Law Center on Weatherford Street in Fort Worth.