Religion: Episcopalian Assent

"I'm quite speechless!" exclaimed the Most Rev. Arthur C. Lichtenberger, Presiding Bishop of the Protestant Episcopal Church. Like everybody else at the Episcopalians' 60th triennial General Convention in Detroit last week, he was astonished at the speed with which the House of Bishops committed themselves to negotiate toward Presbyterian Eugene Carson Blake's proposal for a four-church merger (TIME cover, May 26).

A whole day had been set aside for debate on the issue, and an overflow crowd of spectators jammed the side aisles of the room in Cobo Hall to be present when the Episcopal fireworks went off. Virginia's Bishop Robert F....

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