CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) – The nation’s highest court has refused to hear a case from South Carolina churches upset with The Episcopal Church over a decision concerning ownership of property.
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday denied a request from the Diocese of South Carolina to reverse a decision by the South Carolina Supreme Court. Last year, the court ruled that the national denomination owns the church property.
Protesting churches left the national church in 2012 citing concerns about theological issues including the ordination of gay priests.
The Episcopal Church says it’s governed by its own laws and rules. It says people are free to leave the church if they disagree but cannot take church property with them.
The U.S. Supreme Court historically refuses to hear such cases.