By BRUCE SMITH
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - The legal fight stemming from the split in the Episcopal Church in eastern South Carolina goes before the South Carolina Supreme Court this week.
The conservative Diocese of South Carolina left the national Episcopal Church in 2012 amid differences over theological issues. It then went to court to protect its identity, the symbols it uses such as the diocesan seal and $500 million in church property.
A circuit judge held a three-week trial last year and earlier this year ruled the diocese owns it name, symbols and property.
But The Episcopal Church and The Episcopal Church in South Carolina, comprised of parishes in the area remaining with the national church, have appealed.
The justices hear arguments in Columbia on Wednesday.