That the General Secretary be instructed to place Plan of Union on the agenda for the 1975 General Synod, and take whatever preliminary steps that are required to implement this decision, including wide publicity throughout the Church. CARRIED
That the National Executive Council, concurring with the House of Bishops, requests the Committee on Union and Joint Mission to spend more time developing particular alternatives for Joint Mission in accordance with the Lund Principle, and less on promoting Plan of Union.
That the reports of the Joint Anglican/Roman Catholic Study Commissions on Ministry and The Eucharist be circulated, for information and study, to the United Church and Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), and to members of the Committee on Union and Joint Mission. CARRIED
Chancellor Ryan, a member of the Committee on Union and Joint Mission, spoke to the following Motion passed at the December, 1973 meeting of the Committee.
"That in accordance with the mandate, 'to develop a climate for a true and lasting union' given by the Churches to the Committee on Union and Joint Mission; in the spirit of Lund Principle, 'that we should do together everything which conscience does not compel us to do separately'; and recognizing the need for practical and symbolic actions at the national level to undergird and complement local and regional initiatives in the area of joint mission, this Committee requests the National Executive Council, the All Canada Committee and the Executive of the General Council, to deal jointly during 1974 with the following matters:
a) the creation of a new publication to take the place of The Canadian Churchman, the Canadian Disciple and the United Church Observer;
b) the unification of administrative units at national levels, eg. Christian Education, Communications;
c) co-operative use of space in national headquarters buildings."
Moved by Shepherd, seconded by Goodings,
That this Motion be accepted.
Moved by Graham, seconded by Cook,
That we move into a Committee of the Whole. CARRIED
The intent of the above Motion was to allow discussion of the Motion of the Committee on Union and Joint Mission in relationship to the report of the Canadian Churchman to the National Executive Council.
That we move out of the Committee of the Whole. CARRIED
It was agreed to vote on the three proposals from the Committee on Union and Joint Mission separately.
Moved by Shepherd, seconded by Goodings,
a) That the National Executive Council consider during 1974 the creation of a new publication to take the place of the Canadian Churchman, the Canadian Disciple and the United Church Observer. DEFEATED
b) That the National Executive Council consider during 1974 the unification of administrative units at national levels, eg. Christian Education, Communications. DEFEATED
c) That the National Executive Council consider during 1974 the cooperative use of space in National Headquarter buildings. DEFEATED
The following opinion of the Assessors was reported:
"A United Church minister could be a communicant of the Anglican Church of Canada, and, if he regarded himself and was accepted in the diocese as a member of our Church, even if he was also regarded as a member of The United Church, could be elected as a lay member of General Synod. However, if he has been presbyterally and not episcopally ordained, he cannot be a clerical member unless changes are made in the provisions relating to membership in our clergy.
Moved by Graham, Seconded by Downey,
That the National Executive Council authorize that an appropriate footnote be drafted for inclusion in the Handbook. DEFEATED
That this footnote not be included in the Handbook, but that the opinion of the Assessors be kept on record. CARRIED
At least six major issues will highlight the 25th Session of General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada next month in Niagara Falls, Ontario.
General Synod will convene at 9:30 am, Monday, January 25th in the Sheraton-Brock Hotel, with the opening Eucharist and the opening address by the senior Metropolitan and Acting Primate, the Most Reverend William L. Wright. The Session begins January 25th and continues to February 3rd.
According to the Executive Director of Program, National Office, the Anglican Church of Canada, Canon J.C. Bothwell, some of the major issues include: the election of a new Primate, the approval of a new joint hymn book for the Anglican and United Churches, the reception of the report of the Commissioners on Union, the full reconsideration of the Anglican Church of Canada's policy regarding overseas work, a discussion on the implications of the integration of the national structure of the Anglican Church Women with the structure of the whole church, reports and policy decisions on such matters as youth work, Coalition for Development and the implementation of the Hendry Report (dealing with native peoples).
Canon Bothwell says the reason for holding the Anglican General Synod and the General Council of the United Church at the same time and place, is to make sure the two national Churches will be on the same time schedule when an eventual Plan of Union is developed. Thus they would not be faced with the problem of one church having to consider such a plan before the other. He says, "I think there is general agreement that, although we are meeting in the same city and at the same time, for the most part, the two national bodies will function separately. On the other hand, there is much to be gained from the information sharing of the delegates of both churches."
General Synod is the national parliament of the Church and decides the policy for the work of the National Office at 600 Jarvis Street in Toronto. However, the Anglican Church is a "federation" of 28 dioceses and part of the job in the implementation of General Synod policy will be to make sure that the dioceses are adequately consulted and informed.
The last General Synod met at Laurentia[n] University in Sudbury in 1969.
With the exception of a few meetings at the Sheraton-Brock Hotel with the United Church of Canada, the Anglican sessions are being held about 75 yards away at the Sheraton Foxhead Inn.
The executives of the Anglican and United churches in Canada have recommended simultaneous meetings of their respective legislative bodies in the same city in late 1970 or early 1971.
Biennial sessions of the general synod of the Anglican Church of Canada and general council of the United Church of Canada have always met in alternate years. The new plan will synchronize the meetings of the two churches so that they may consider, within the same year, concerns that are common to both.
It is expected that a plan of union of the two churches will be prepared by 1972, after which it will come before the churches for consideration.
Proposals for uniting some divisions in the churches' national offices, as well as the national newspapers of both churches were set aside by the churches' executive bodies.
Most Rev. H.H. Clark, primate of the Anglican church, said both churches recognize that step-by-step merging is neither as easy or desirable as was first thought.
"There is frank recognition of the fact that we have reached a stage in our negotiations where certain difficulties, both theological and organizational, loom larger than they did a year ago or five years ago," he said. He said representatives of both churches recognize this and that it is not surprising.
"What is more important is a working together in ever closer involvement without organizational mergers," Archbishop Clark said.
Archbishop Clark also announced the appointment of Rt. Rev. John O. Anderson, co-adjutor bishop of Rupert's Land, as bishop ordinary to the Canadian armed forces. Bishop Anderson, who succeeds Rt. Rev. Ivor A. Norris, bishop of Brandon, who died January 28, will be responsible for all work of the Anglican Church with members of the Canadian armed forces and their families.
The primate, after consultation with the church's National Executive Council, sent a letter to Prime Minister Trudeau in which he said he sees no serious objection to the appointment of a Canadian envoy to the Vatican, if such an appointment would "advance the cause of Canada."
However, he said, there is some fear that the proposed appointment might impede the growing spirit of ecumenism in Canada.
"Despite this, Anglicans are open to hear the reasons why this proposal is being considered at this time," Archbishop Clark said. He said he hopes the proposal does not involve any changes in the status of the present representative of the Vatican in Ottawa.