TORONTO (May 25) -- The Anglican diocese of the Arctic is poised to make Canadian church history next week when it meets in Iqaluit to elect a new suffragan bishop.
To date, three men have been nominated, all of them Inuk. They are Rev. Ben Arreak of Pangnirtung, Canon Abeli Napartuk of Puvirtuq and Rev. Paul Idlout of Cape Dorset. If the diocesan synod, which meets May 27, elects one of them, he will become the first Inuk bishop in the Anglican Church of Canada.
(The Anglican church has two aboriginal bishops: Bishop Charles Arthurson, an assistant bishop in the diocese of Saskatchewan and Bishop Gordon Beardy, an assistant bishop in the diocese of Keewatin. Assistant bishops usually have responsibility for a specific geographic part of their diocese.)
The Arctic election on May 27 is to select a successor to Bishop Terrence Buckle, the previous assistant or suffragan bishop of the Arctic, who was recently elected Bishop of the Yukon.
Bishop Christopher Williams of the Arctic explained that under diocesan law, it is possible for nominations to be made up to 72 hours before the electoral synod begins its meeting.
The new bishop will be consecrated at St. Jude's Cathedral in Iqaluit on Sunday June 2.
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Contact Doug Tindal, Director of Communication 416-924-9199 ext. 286; 905-335-8349 (residence) or Sam Carriere, Media Relations, General Synod, 416-924-9199, ext. 256
November 19, 1993 -- The Primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, Archbishop Michael Peers, has issued the following statement in response to the episcopal election in the Diocese of Toronto.
The Diocese of Toronto, and the whole of the Anglican Church of Canada, today rejoice in the election of two fine new priests as bishops. Both Michael Bedford-Jones and Victoria Matthews offer gifts of leadership that will complement and add to those already present in others who hold episcopal office.
But in particular, I welcome with profound joy and sheer delight, the election of a woman as bishop in the Church in Canada. The ordination of women to the priesthood in our church has been part of our experience in Canada for 17 years now. During that time we have been blessed by the particular graces that they have brought to ordained ministry. I am sure that it is no accident that our Church is growing more compassionate and nurturing in its pastoral work, more thorough and inclusive in its communication, and more prophetic in its commitment to justice. Though ground-breaking in its effect, today's decision is a natural outcome of years of caring and effective leadership offered by women.
In recent weeks, I have had occasions to participate in different events with the four women who are already bishops in the Anglican Communion. I have been reminded again of the wholeness we seek in Christ's Church, -- indeed in all of society. It is a wholeness which Saint Paul envisaged when he wrote: "There is no longer Jew or Greek, no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus". (Galations 3:28) Today the Spirit of God, through the Synod of Toronto, has helped us further that vision in our time. May it continue to be encouraged among us.
I look forward to working with Victoria and to welcoming her to he place in the national House of Bishops. I have no doubt that she will receive a glad welcome and the whole-hearted support of all her colleagues in episcopal ministry.
For further information, contact: Doug Tindal, Director of Communications (416) 924-9199 ext. 286 [or] (416) 335-8349 (residence)
Concern was expressed that in the past bishops have retired without appropriate recognition and "goodbye" from the House.
That the Primate be requested to write, on behalf of the House, expressing appreciation and best wishes to those who have retired since the November, 1991, meeting of the House. CARRIED
The Secretary reported the receipt of a letter from Bishop Snowden and Bishop Berry expressing the hope that it might be possible to devise a system of informing retired bishops of changes in the membership of the House of Bishops.
The Primate explained that messages are sent to all diocesan offices by fax as soon as information becomes available to his office. It was agreed that a statement should be included in all faxed messages requesting diocesan offices to convey the information to all bishops in the dioceses. It was agreed that an up-to-date list of diocesan fax numbers should be compiled and distributed to members of the House.
Bishop Ken Genge of the Diocese of Edmonton is retiring at the end of November. He leaves behind a how-to guide which will prepare an elected bishop for the episcopacy. Bishop Genge will work with his brother Gary in his company, Enablers Consulting Inc.