Bishop Morgan drew attention to the document "The New Covenant" stating that appeals have been received from native people that the Sunday before the First Minister's Conference be designated a Day of Prayer.
That this House of Bishops respond to the request of Native leaders for the Churches to name a Day of Prayer to precede the final First Ministers' Conference to be held on March 26-27, by designating Sunday, March 22, as a Day of Prayer for Aboriginal Peoples:
And that we commend the document entitled "A New Covenant" prepared as a Pastoral Statement by leaders of the Christian Churches to be used as a focus for this Day of Prayer. CARRIED
Arising from a discussion on the meaning of Sponsorship of Theological Students.
That the Primate be requested to appoint a committee of three bishops to draft a full statement regarding the meaning of sponsorship of theological students by the bishop. The statement to be of such a nature that it could be presented to the General Synod in the form of a Canon or considered as a directive from the House of Bishops to the Heads of Theological Colleges. And that the Committee considers all matters referred to in the letter from the Heads of Colleges to the Bishops. CARRIED
LETTER FROM HEADS OF COLLEGES
February 15th, 1961.
The Right Reverend Tom Greenwood, L.Th., D.D.
Secretary of the House of Bishops
My Lord Bishop:
At this brief conference held at Scarborough, immediately after we were privileged to meet with the House of Bishops, the Heads of Colleges discussed the subjects handed to us from that meeting.
1. Screening of Candidates for Holy Orders: Modified forms of C.A.C.T.M. [Central Advisory Council for the Ministry (Church of England)] were discussed, but we supposed that it was not within our competence to make resolutions, and our discussion did not get beyond a general opinion that such a move would be advantageous. Most of our discussion centred around, the pre-theological student, and the general feeling here was that men in this category should be handled in the same way as other undergraduate students, i.e. purely on the basis of accepted academic entrance qualification, and not as ordinands.
2. Sponsorship of Theological Students: We were left in some confusion as to the bishops' understanding of sponsorship, and I, as secretary, was asked to seek further clarification.
We understand that it is the desire of the bishops to distinguish 'sponsorship' from financial support; and we were encouraged by the impression we gained that the bishops are prepared to distinguish financial support from obligation to service.
It was our opinion that whatever 'sponsorship' might mean in regard to the theological student, any such condition for the pre-theological student would be premature. He is better regarded as an undergraduate student in Arts. None of this was intended to minimise the importance of pastoral care of and interest in such students form the start. We were concerned about the possible 'conditional' nature of such sponsorship as is proposed inhibiting such students from normal healthy competitive development in their undergraduate days.
As for theological students, nearly all of whom at present are in some direct way associated with a diocesan, we failed to appreciate the value of any rule making this necessary.
If we have misinterpreted the intention in this matter we shall eagerly anticipate correction.
3. Pastoralia and Devotional training in Course: As this is a matter largely of concern to the faculties of colleges we have referred the matter to the faculties for discussion, and if they so desire, to report back to us.
4. Training of a Native Ministry: All 'old Canadians' having the necessary entrance qualifications are welcomed at all the Colleges. But it is manifestly unprofitable to include in our present courses men whose English or general education does not enable them to compete. From the experience of some of the colleges frustration and failure among such candidates have been high and there is also apparently a real risk of "detribalisation'. In other words Indian students (we have had no experience of Eskimos) tend to loneliness and frustration, or to become Europeanised, and so to lose touch with their own people. It would therefore, appear to us that better results might be expected where such candidates are not removed from their own environment and culture, and that they are better trained by men familiar with their language and culture. We would like to have heard reports on the Summer courses held at Dauphin. The Conference asked that the three prairie colleges with some experience of training such men should continue conversations with the Bishop of Brandon on this matter.
5. Training of 'Special Course' men outside the Colleges: Recognising that the Colleges as presently constituted, are not directly concerned; that in the brief to the bishops from the Heads of Colleges we stated our readiness to accept men in this category, where possible, under a Bishop's sponsorship; and recognising this as a specified area of concern for the Provisional Committee on Theological Education, the Conference of Heads did however, venture to commend the work already done in the four centres (Halifax, Montreal, Toronto and Huron). We were particularly relieved that residence and post-ordination internships are requirements for such men. In regard to residence for such men all the colleges will gladly assist within the limitations set by any other agreements.
I am asked to say again, my Lord Bishop, how greatly appreciated by us was the Primate's and hospitality, and the courtesy of the House of Bishops.
Yours sincerely, F.H.W. CRABB Secretary Heads of Colleges Conference.
Archbishop Seaborn informed the House that ten Chaplains have left the Service in the past year, either by retirement or voluntary release, and that fourteen new Chaplains have joined the complement. He said that a larger number of Chaplains will be needed in the years ahead as the Armed Forces is growing in size, and added that he is preparing a statistical report which will go shortly to the Administration and Finance Committee.
Archbishop Seaborn said that the six years which he had been privileged to serve as Bishop Ordinary to the Forces have been a stimulating and interesting experience and expressed appreciation for the opportunity of serving in that Office.
That this House express its deep appreciation to Archbishop Seaborn for his distinguished service as Bishop Ordinary to the Forces and sends our assurance of best wishes to Archbishop and Mrs. Seaborn. CARRIED #2-6-86
Archbishop Scott said that Bishop Jamie Clarke would take up his duties as Bishop Ordinary on 1st July, 1986, and expressed his appreciation to Bishop Clarke for his willingness to take on this work.
**N.B. In Resolution #1-11-86 from the November 1986 House of Bishops Minutes Bishop Clarke "noted that he took up his duties as Bishop Ordinary to the Forces on September 1st, 1986". The resolution corrected the Minutes of June 1986.
A member expressed his feeling that it would be appropriate to send to the Canadian government support for the proposed amendment before the legislature regarding the Canadian Human Rights Act. He inquired whether the House would be prepared to do so. The change to the Act would make discrimination based on sexual orientation illegal.
That the House of Bishops support the legislation before the House of Commons to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation.
Moved by: Bishop Williams
Seconded by: Bishop Buckle
That the motion be amended to include:
That the House of Bishops never-the-less still holds to those sections of the 1979 (House of Bishops) Statement regarding the orientation of homosexual men and lesbians." LOST
During the discussion that followed some members expressed their feelings that the amendment was inappropriate to send to the Canadian government, because legislation does not affect the internal workings of the Church. Also, it was agreed that if a motion of support was passed, the House needed to
1) send the motion of support to the Canadian government, and;
2) send a press statement to the Church.
Moved by: Bishop Burton
Seconded by: Bishop Lawrence
That the motion begin with:
"In accordance with the national House of Bishops 1979 Statement of Principle and reaffirming the 1995 resolution of General Synod ..." LOST
(The 1979 Statement would be appended)
Concern was expressed about not receiving the information before hand. The speaker complained about a pattern in meetings of putting motions before the House is prepared to vote on them (the motions).
The motion was put before the House. CARRIED
Archbishop Peers asked Bishop Ingham and Bishop Burton to write a statement to the Church from the House about the motion of support for the proposed amendment to the Human Rights Act before the legislature. The Primate requested that their statement be brought back for discussion over lunch.
A plea was made to the Agenda Committee, to schedule issues which require time for some thought earlier on the agenda, rather than at the end when the House is drained of energy and pressed for time.
The House of Bishops adjourned for chapel.
Over lunch the press statement written by Bishop Burton and Bishop Ingham was approved by those present.
ANGLICAN BISHOPS SUPPORT HUMAN RIGHTS AMENDMENTS
The House of Bishops of the Anglican Church of Canada has today sent a message to the House of Commons in support of the Human Rights Act. This is based on the church's belief that all persons are created in the image of God, and that Christ died for all. This statement is consistent with the existing policy of the Canadian House of Bishops since 1979, reaffirmed by the General Synod in 1995, that condemns bigotry, violence and hatred directed towards anyone due to their sexual orientation.
We wish to make it clear to the church that this action does not change the current status of the 1979 statement with respect to the ordination of homosexual persons. This continues to be a matter of discussion and theological reflection within the House, as within the church at large. No change of doctrine and discipline is being implied. Rather the Gospel imperative of live, compassion and justice is being upheld which continues to be the call of every Christian.
[N.B. Revised and corrected text of this resolution taken from Appendix x attached to the Minutes of the House of Bishops Meeting 28 October - 1 November 1996, see Resolution entitled "Minutes of the Last Meeting", p. 11.]
In response to the letter from the General Secretary, this House approves the proposal that would make provision for the transfer of clergy employed at the National Office to the ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the Primate. CARRIED 10-2-82
It was agreed that the Committee on Organization be asked to study the many factors involved, recognizing that there must be a clear line of accountability. It was agreed, also, that the Organization Committee be asked to study the matter of transference of Diocesan titles.
Concern was raised regarding the House of Bishops' List. The Primate reported that the Rev. R. Johns is working on this and that he is to report to the Organization Committee and the House of Bishops.
The General Secretary noted that retired Bishops are, by Canon, now accountable to the Bishop in whose Diocese they reside.
The Primate welcomed Bishop Hatfield and the Rev. Christopher Carr who presented the Report of the Task Force on Capital Punishment.
Bishop Hatfield said that the Report was completed prior to the recent rash of killings of police officers, which has created a high stress level. Because of the killings, the Task Force felt that this is a most opportune time to conduct an educational session on Capital Punishment.
Bishop Hatfield said that some Churches have not indicated agreement with the abolition of capital punishment, but that those who have done so have not changed their stands. Examples were given in which it was illustrated that the threat of the death penalty would not have been a deterrent to murder.
The Primate shared reflections from two lawyers who have studied the report, and invited open discussion.
That a short statement be issued by the House of Bishops on the subject of Capital Punishment. CARRIED #6-10-84
It was agreed that a small group prepare a suggested statement for the perusal of the House and that the Task Force be requested to revise the paper in the light of comments by the House. The statement, when approved, is to be addressed to the Anglican constituency and the citizens of Canada. The revised Report is to be presented at the February, 1985 meeting of the House.
The Primate thanked Bishop Hatfield and Mr. Carr for being present and addressing the House, and expressed appreciation to the members of the Task Force for their work.
Bishop Jones raised some of the problems in having to maintain links with Chaplains who are working in another Diocese for all or a large part of their ministry.
Bishop Stiff reminded the House that, some years ago, considerable work was done on the licensing of clergy. It was said, at that time, that wherever a priest is working, he should have some relationship with the Bishop of the Diocese in which he is working.
The Primate said that this is a very complex issue and raised the possibility of having Government Chaplains linked in the same way as the military chaplains by a Bishop Ordinary.
It was recognized that there is a growing number of chaplaincy jobs and agreed that a priest should be in a relationship with his diocesan bishop.
That this House of Bishops reaffirms the principle that every priest should be in a relationship with a local Bishop, and requests the Personnel Resources Officer to study the matter and develop Guidelines to be referred back to the House of Bishops for study. CARRIED #3-6-86
The Report of the Clergy Marriages Task Force was received and discussed. The policy of the Diocese of Calgary with respect to dysfunction and marital breakdown was found to be helpful in setting out a model of diocesan procedures and guidelines for the caring of clergy families. Some elements of it might be in conflict with human rights codes.
The bishops were informed that a Personnel Review Task Force has been established to study what services the national office is providing the dioceses since the retirement of the Reverend Richard Johns. A questionnaire is to go to all bishops as well as other networks of the church, and a recommendation will be made to NEC at some time in the future.
That this House asks the Primate to set up a Task Force to consider ways of enabling the implementation of the recommendations of the Clergy Marriage Report in the various dioceses across the country and report to a future meeting of the House. CARRIED
Bishop Valentine, as chairman of the Continuing Education Committee, explained the background for inviting Dr. Donald Cupitt, Professor of Theology at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and Bishop Wesley Frensdorff, Bishop of Nevada, to share with the House their thoughts on Folk Religion and the Renewal/Charismatic Movements as they affect the responsibilities and decisions of bishops.
Dr. Cupitt posed two questions:
1. How can the Church, with its monarchical background, adapt to the pluralism of today?
2. What kind of faith is possible for modern secular and autonomous man?
He went on to outline three manifestations of present-day spiritual life: (a) Folk Religion; (b) Ecstatic Religion; (c) Movement to Radical Freedom.
The House divided into groups for discussion following which Dr. Culpitt answered various questions.
Bishop Frensdorff was asked to respond to the paper given in the morning session by Dr. Culpitt, and following this, he and Dr. Culpitt engaged in a dialogue interspersed by questions directed to them by members of the House. The House again divided into groups for discussion.
Forms of Renewal
Bishop Valentine gave a brief description of a number of forms of renewal present in the life of the Church today. These included: Cursillo, Teens Encounter Christ, Marriage Encounter, Prayer and Praise Groups, Healing Groups, Bible Study Groups and Worship Groups. Others suggested by members of the House were: Focolare, Core or Search, The Full Gospel Businessmen's Association, Women Aglow, Core Communities, and Christian Communal Living.
Bishop Frensdorff spoke on the general topic of "how to be a pastor to these movements." He noted that as well as in these movements there are also renewal activities in liturgy, ministry and evangelism. In the course of his remarks he identified many issues inherent in the renewal movements and expressed his views of some of the pros and cons relating to them.
The House participated in a dialogue led by Professor Culpitt and Bishop Frensdorff.
The Primate expressed the deep thanks of the House for the presence, contribution and participation of Dr. Culpitt and Bishop Frensdorff.
That a Continuing Education event be built into the House of Bishops' programme each year. CARRIED