Beliefnet News

By Ron Cammel
Portage, Mich. – After 40 years, a “simple, quiet, sedate
liturgy” brought the landmark Episcopal Cathedral of Christ the King to
a close.
The building, which resembles a fortress-like castle, has been the
bishop’s seat for the Episcopal Diocese of Western Michigan since its
construction in 1968. The diocese sold it to the 2,300-member Kalamazoo
Valley Family Church after leaders decided they had neither the
resources nor support to maintain the building or 30-acre grounds.
A traditional “secularization liturgy” on Wednesday (Aug. 15) marked
the end of the diocese’s religious use of the cathedral. Bishop Robert
Gepert read a statement saying the site is no longer under his
jurisdiction and can be used for any purpose.
The building initially had a lot of use as a mission church of the
diocese, but it has not had much diocesan use the past 20 years, said
the Rev. Canon William Spaid.
Many Episcopalians from the sprawling diocese never get to the
cathedral, he said. The cathedral has been used for ordinations, large
gatherings and liturgies that serve as models for churches.
The diocese has no plans for a new cathedral or spiritual hub. Spaid
said the bishop’s seat will be wherever the bishop is serving at a given
The $1.275 million sale means the parish congregation at the
cathedral is meeting for worship temporarily at a local athletic club,
said the Rev. Cynthia Black, the congregation’s rector.
Copyright 2007 Religion News Service

Join the Discussion
comments powered by Disqus