The Metropolitan Synod of the Apostolic Episcopal Church (AEC), with headquarters in the State of New York, is the governing body of the Apostolic Episcopal Church worldwide. The Primate and Ecclesiastical Administrator of the Apostolic Episcopal Church is the Most Revd. Francis C. Spataro, OCR, DD, DChr, GCCT, GCLBC.
The Apostolic Episcopal Church is recognized by an Act of the Legislature of the State of New York, in amendment to the Religious Corporations Law, viz. Article IIIA, Chapter 597 of 1932 (becoming law on 1 April 1932). This specifically recognizes the Apostolic Episcopal Church as an unincorporated religious body, and sets out the powers of its Metropolitan Synod in respect of particular duties and responsibilities. By a further amendment which became law on 3 April 1933, the Apostolic Episcopal Church was authorized by the State of New York to grant ecclesiastical degrees of orders in Theology. These laws remain in force today and along with the Constitution and Canons constitute the operational basis of the Apostolic Episcopal Church, particularly in so far as the formation of parishes and their conduct subject to Metropolitan Synod are concerned. See http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/nycode/RCO/3-A for the current statutes.
Metropolitan Synod has recently expressed its concern at the actions of one Dr Gary Barkman and those clergy associated with him. Dr Barkman has established a website at http://drgbarkman.tripod.com on which he holds himself out to be “Patriarch” of the Apostolic Episcopal Church and other clergy of his body to be likewise clergy of the Apostolic Episcopal Church. This is a baseless, fraudulent and impertinent imposture. For some time, text and images belonging to an official AEC website at http://www.bertilpersson.com were reproduced on Dr Barkman’s website verbatim and without acknowledgement. After receiving representations from Metropolitan Synod to cease and desist from these actions, these materials have now been removed. However, there continue to be unauthorized references to the AEC on the website and the revised name of Dr Barkman’s group, viz. “Episcopal Apostolic Church” is close enough to that of the AEC to cause needless confusion.
For the purposes of clarity, it is therefore made explicit that:
- Dr Gary Barkman, Dr Titus MacMillan and other clergy associated with them are not, and never have been, members of clergy of the Apostolic Episcopal Church.
- The Apostolic Episcopal Church has no office of “Patriarch”.
- Any claim by these men to represent the Apostolic Episcopal Church is unauthorized and without warrant of Metropolitan Synod of the AEC.
- Any assertion by these men that the AEC is or has become a Pentecostal body is false and baseless. The AEC continues to abide by its Statement of Faith as recorded, inter alia, on p 561 of Religious Bodies, 1936: pt. 1. Denominations, A to J : statistics, history …by Timothy Francis Murphy, United States Bureau of the Census, 1936.
A list of the members of Metropolitan Synod is provided on the Clergy page of this website. No other bishop, whether their church is in intercommunion with the Apostolic Episcopal Church or not, is recognized as a member of Metropolitan Synod.