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30 records – page 1 of 3.

Date
1974 December 1 - 6
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution
Date
1974 December 1 - 6
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution
Mover
Archbishop Jackson
Seconder
Bishop Sperry
Text
"That the Primate be requested to prepare a Pastoral Letter to the Church on self-discipline in relation to the under-privileged of our own country and of the rest of the world to be circulated pre-Lent." CARRIED
Subjects
Anglican Church of Canada - Pastoral letters and charges
Poverty - Canada - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Less detail
Date
1988 February 8-12
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 1-2-88
Date
1988 February 8-12
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 1-2-88
Mover
Bishop Brown
Seconder
Bishop Payne
Prologue
Bishop Payne asked if, in the light of recently adopted federal government legislation, this House should make a public statement.
Text
That the Primate be requested to consider this matter and call together a small group of people to prepare a contemporary statement regarding abortion. CARRIED
Subjects
Abortion - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Anglican Church of Canada. Task Force on Abortion
Anglican Church of Canada - Pastoral letters and charges
Less detail

Bishops' statement ill-timed, ill-conceived

http://archives.anglican.ca/en/permalink/article34554
Author
Eerkes, Harry
Wirrell, Frank
Ferry, Thomas
Nunn, Keith
Russell, John
Record Type
Journal Article
Journal
Anglican Journal
Date
2007 June - July
Author
Eerkes, Harry
Wirrell, Frank
Ferry, Thomas
Nunn, Keith
Russell, John
Record Type
Journal Article
Journal
Anglican Journal
Date
2007 June - July
Volume
133
Issue
6
Page
4
Notes
Three letters comment on the pastoral letter from the Canadian Anglican House of Bishops on same sex blessings that was released before the General Synod.
Subjects
Same sex unions - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Anglican Church of Canada. House of Bishops
Anglican Church of Canada - Pastoral letters and charges
Less detail

Book of Alternative Services

http://archives.anglican.ca/en/permalink/official1383
Date
1985 February
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 3-2-85
Date
1985 February
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 3-2-85
Mover
Bishop Short
Seconder
Bishop Payne
Prologue
Bishop Berry reported that a Pastoral Letter is to be prepared and submitted to the Primate for distribution in early September, 1985.
It is to be stressed in the Pastoral that the Book of Common Prayer is the official Prayer Book of the Anglican Church of Canada. Wide use of the Lectionary throughout the Canadian Church will be urged. All clergy and laity will be encouraged to look at the theological focus and practical instructions regarding how to take the Services.
Text
That a Pastoral Letter be distributed to the whole Canadian Church in September, urging the use of the Book of Alternative Services, and encouraging study at the parish, deanery and diocesan levels of theological focus and practical instructions regarding the taking of Services. CARRIED #3-2-85
Notes
It was agreed that those Dioceses which have guidelines on the use of the Book of Alternative Services should send a copy of the guidelines to the Primate for distribution to all the Bishops.
Text of Pastoral Letter issued September 1985 (as in Official binder)
The Bishops of the Church send greetings to all our people as we begin to use the new official Book of Alternative Services, authorized by the General Synod of 1983 at Fredericton, New Brunswick.
We write to all our people mindful that the Book of Common Prayer is the official prayer book of the Church but that, in line with most of the Anglican Communion and with other Christian traditions, new liturgical forms are being used. New expressions of faith and worship relevant to our understanding of God's purpose in this world, and adapted to the communication needs of our age have resulted in our Book of Alternative Services which offers new possibilities and resources for worship and nurture.
The Book of Alternative Services has been approved after fourteen years of experimentation. It combines an ecumenical dimension of worship together with the Common Lectionary, which should be of great value to the whole Church.
We are aware of the need for the care and sensitivity in introducing the Book of Alternative Services into the life of the Church, and we ask the clergy to provide guidance and instruction on its contents and to encourage congregations to participate in its regular use and evaluation.
The opportunity is before us to use a new vehicle of liturgical expression and it is offered to the whole Church with the prayer that we might grow in faith and in the worship of God.
We commend it for personal and congregational use.
Subjects
Anglican Church of Canada. Book of Alternative Services
Anglican Church of Canada - Liturgy
Anglican Church of Canada - Prayer-books and devotions
Liturgy - Anglican Church of Canada
Lectionaries - Anglican Church of Canada
Anglican Church of Canada - Pastoral letters and charges
Less detail

Capital Punishment

http://archives.anglican.ca/en/permalink/official1335
Date
1987 February 16-20
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 13-2-87
Resolution 14-2-87
Pastoral Letter
Date
1987 February 16-20
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 13-2-87
Resolution 14-2-87
Pastoral Letter
Mover
Bishop Brown
Seconder
Bishop Conlin
Prologue
Moved by: Bishop Brown
Seconded by: Bishop Lawrence
That the Pastoral be considered and edited as necessary. CARRIED
It was agreed that the Reverend Don Brown should be requested to prepare a list of all Members of Parliament and distribute copies of the list to all the Bishops.
Text
That we accept this Pastoral on Capital Punishment. CARRIED
Notes
APPENDIX A
PASTORAL : TO THE PEOPLE OF THE ANGLICAN CHURCH OF CANADA AND THE CITIZENS OF CANADA
The violence that marks our society is a cause of great concern, for violence often begets violence. There is a streak in human nature which out of greed, or in order to attain revenge, or to cover inadequacies, hits out violently. Inequities in society at large also lead to actions arising from frustration and anger. Such violence strikes at the very heart of society. People cannot live together unless this tendency is controlled.
Society has developed mechanisms to keep violence under control. Law and order are necessary if citizens are to live in safety and be free to come and go. Our police forces and justice system are designed to curb destructive forces and to make Canada a safe place to live.
Violence has brought great strains to our police and judicial system. Criminal acts have led to police being more heavily armed. Society is shocked by the murder of police in the course of duty. Prisons are over crowded and prison guards have a thankless and dangerous job.
It does not surprise us that there has been a renewed call for the re-institution of the death penalty for murder. We understand the feelings that have led to this and have sympathy with those who have been deeply hurt by criminal activity. However, we cannot be content with an answer that responds to violence with even more violence. An answer which destroys human life cannot enhance the respect for, and quality of, life in our society. On the contrary, an important Christian conviction is that anything that increases a general recognition within society of the infinite worth of the person will be a powerful agent in the ultimate protection of that society.
We believe in the sacredness of human life. Life is God's gift and the Bible teaches us that men and women are made in the image of God. The distortion of that image that is reflected in a person committing a murder does not make that person any less important in God's eyes. In all of us there is some distortion of the image, but the Lord died for all of us.
We urge our people and members of Parliament that they consider seriously the implications of re-introducing the death penalty and not give in to a hasty response to recent violence. These implications include such things as:
- the impossibility of reversing execution where there has been a miscarriage of justice;
- despite the common assumption that the death penalty functions as a deterrent, Canadian experience has shown that there has been no increase in the murder rate following the abolition of capital punishment, and
- a belief that the murderer is beyond being changed by God's grace to be a creative member of society.
We are convinced that it is in the best interests of Canadian society as a whole that Capital Punishment not be re-introduced, but that as Christians we need to seek alternatives that recognize the infinite worth of the individual person before God.
Reform of our correctional systems needs to become a priority of our Government. The parole system needs continuing review so that no one who continues to be a danger is released into society. Experiments which are taking place for renewal of penal institutions and programmes should be encouraged and extended.
We must give support to police forces and prison guards by providing sufficient personnel and adequate training. If society does not give the necessary support to our police and staff of correctional institutions we put them under almost overwhelming stress and this in turn may contribute to citizens feeling the need to take the law into their own hands. This could only lead to an increase in the spiral of violence.
We encourage members of our parishes to be supportive to the victims of crime and their families. Feelings of fear and anger can become destructive and will only be healed by others reaching out lovingly. The Christian community also needs to be a support to families of guards who often have to cope with the pressures involved in this work.
Prison chaplains have a difficult role and need the support and prayers of the wider church. The chaplain has the task of sharing by word, and by friendship, the news of a God who in love both forgives us and calls us to live the new life.
For all of us that new standard includes a personal struggle against violence. Societal controls on violence are not enough. Each one of us is called to reflect the image of God, a God of love who cares infinitely for every person.
THE ARCHBISHOPS AND BISHOPS OF THE ANGLICAN CHURCH OF CANADA
FEBRUARY, 1987.
Subjects
Capital punishment - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Criminal justice, Administration of - Canada - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Victims of crimes - Canada
Chaplains, Prison - Anglican Church of Canada
Violence - Canada
Violence - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Anglican Church of Canada - Pastoral letters and charges
Less detail

Capital Punishment

http://archives.anglican.ca/en/permalink/official1384
Date
1985 February
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 4-2-85
Date
1985 February
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 4-2-85
Mover
Bishop Short
Seconder
Bishop Stiff
Prologue
Bishop Leonard Hatfield and the Rev. Christopher Carr were welcomed.
Bishop Hatfield reviewed the Report and addendum, noting changes which had been made in the light of suggestions made at the last meeting of the House.
The Primate shared a letter dated November, 1984, from Mr. Clyne Harradence, Vice-Chancellor of General Synod in which Mr. Harradence commended the Bishops for the high quality of the document.
In the discussion of the paper, further comments and suggestions were noted. Bishop Brown reported that there was some anger on the part of police officers regarding the Pastoral Letter because no concern was expressed for police and their families.
It was recognized that the current push for the return of the death penalty is, in part, due to an increasing concern for the victims of crime and their families, and justice for the victims must be seen to be done. It was noted that a National Committee to help the victims of crime and their families had been formed recently in Toronto.
Archbishop Scott reported on his recent meeting with Commissioner Yeomans of the National Correctional Services, and suggested that it might be useful to arrange for some private meetings with representatives from various police departments.
The implications of the reinstatement of the death penalty in relation to the Human Rights Code and the Charter of Rights were discussed. It was felt that, if capital punishment were reinstated, the justice system would uphold the statute if it were very clearly defined when capital punishment was called for.
It was noted that documentation is available through the office of the Rev. Donald Brown, Church House, and could be made available upon request.
Archbishop Scott spoke of the meeting which he had with leaders of other Churches and the Prime Minister where capital punishment was discussed. He reported that he stressed at the meeting that he was not expressing the opinion of the whole Canadian Anglican constituency.
Text
That we authorize the release of this report to the Bishops of the Anglican Church of Canada, as revised in the light of discussion, for use at their discretion, as a study resource. CARRIED #4-2-85
Notes
It was agreed that the Pastoral Letter from the House of Bishops should be printed at the beginning of the paper, and that a preface, carefully prepared by the House, should be included.
Subjects
Capital punishment - Canada
Capital punishment - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Victims of crimes - Canada
Criminal justice, Administration of - Canada - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Anglican Church of Canada - Pastoral letters and charges
Harradence, Clyne (J.H. Clyne), 1923-2012
Less detail

Capital Punishment

http://archives.anglican.ca/en/permalink/official1396
Date
1984 October - November
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 7-10-84
Pastoral Letter
Date
1984 October - November
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 7-10-84
Pastoral Letter
Mover
Bishop Lackey
Seconder
Bishop Hannen
Text
That this Pastoral Letter be issued to the members of the Anglican Church of Canada and the Citizens of Canada. CARRIED. ONE OPPOSITION #7-10-84
Notes
It was agreed that copies of the Pastoral Letter on Capital Punishment should be sent to the leaders of the three Federal political parties. The Primate said that a mailing would go to all the clergy following the meeting of the National Executive Council, but that the Bishops are free to use the letter immediately and to release it to local papers.
It was agreed that clergy should be encouraged to read the letter in the Churches on a Sunday that is appropriate. The Diocesan Bishop may indicate what date he wishes to designate for the reading of the letter.
APPENDIX A
PASTORAL LETTER
TO THE PEOPLE OF THE ANGLICAN CHURCH OF CANADA AND THE CITIZENS OF CANADA
The violence that marks our society is a cause of great concern, for violence often begets violence. There is a streak in human nature which out of greed, or in order to attain revenge, or to cover inadequacies, hits out violently. Inequities in society at large also lead to actions arising from frustration and anger. Such violence strikes at the very heart of society. People cannot live together unless this tendency is controlled.
Society has developed mechanisms to keep violence under control. Law and order are necessary if citizens are to live in safety and be free to come and go. Our police forces and justice system are designed to curb destructive forces and to make Canada a safe place to live.
An increase in violence has brought great strains to our police and judicial system. Recent criminal acts have led to police being more heavily armed. Society has been shocked by the rash of murders of policemen in the course of duty. Prisons are over crowded and prison guards have a thankless and dangerous job.
It does not surprise us that there has been a renewed call for the re-institution of the death penalty for murder. We understand the feelings that have led to this and have sympathy with those who have been deeply hurt by criminal activity. However, we cannot be content with an answer that responds to violence with even more violence. An answer which destroys human life cannot enhance the respect for, and quality of, life in our society. On the contrary, an important Christian conviction is that anything that increases a general recognition within society of the infinite worth of the individual will be a powerful agent in the ultimate protection of that society.
We believe in the sacredness of human life. Life is God's gift and the Bible teaches us that men and women are made in the image of God. The distortion of that image that is reflected in a person committing a murder does not make that person any less important in God's eyes. In all of use there is some distortion of the image, but the Lord died for all of us.
We urge our people and members of Parliament that they consider seriously the implications of re-introducing the death penalty and not give in to a hasty response to recent violence. These implications include such things as:
- the impossibility of reversing the hanging where there has been a miscarriage of justice;
- the ignoring of evidence concerning the ineffectiveness of the death penalty as a deterrent, and
- a belief that the murderer is beyond being changed by God's grace to be a creative member of society.
We are convinced that it is in the best interests of Canadian society as a whole that Capital Punishment not be reintroduced, but that as Christians we need to seek alternatives that recognize the infinite worth of the individual before God.
Mere incarceration without rehabilitation will not change the murderer. Reform of our correctional systems needs to become a priority of our Government. The parole system needs continuing review so that no one who continues to be a danger is released into society. Experiments which are taking place for renewal of penal institutions and programmes should be encouraged and extended.
We must give support to police forces and prison guards by providing sufficient personnel and adequate training. If society does not give the necessary support to our law reform officers we put them under almost overwhelming pressure to take the law into their own hands.
We encourage members of our parishes to be supportive to the victims of crime and their families. Feelings of fear and anger can become destructive and will only be healed by others reaching out lovingly. The Christian community also needs to be a support to families of guards who often have to cope with the pressures involved in this work.
Prison chaplains have a difficult role and need the support and prayers of the wider Church. The chaplain has the task of sharing by word, and by friendship, the news of a God who in his love both forgives us and calls us to live the new life.
For all of us that new standard includes a personal struggle against violence. Societal controls on violence are not enough. Each one of us is called to reflect the image of God. He is a God of love who cares infinitely for every individual.
THE ARCHBISHOPS AND BISHOPS OF THE ANGLICAN CHURCH OF CANADA, NOVEMBER 1984
Subjects
Capital punishment - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Chaplains, Prison - Anglican Church of Canada
Criminal justice, Administration of - Canada - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Violence - Canada
Violence - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Victims of crimes - Canada
Anglican Church of Canada - Pastoral letters and charges
Less detail

Communication Matters

http://archives.anglican.ca/en/permalink/official9499
Date
2007 October 25-30
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 06-10-07
Date
2007 October 25-30
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 06-10-07
Mover
Bishop Moxley
Seconder
Bishop Bruce
Prologue
Mr Carriere, Director of Communication and Information Resources, reminded the bishops that they had agreed to issue a letter to the Church after they'd met as a House. Following the meeting in April 2007 they had entrusted him to draft a document which Bishops Kerr-Wilson and Light then reviewed and made some changes to it. He asked the House of Bishops how they wanted to proceed in drafting and issuing their letter to the Church, noting the importance of its members being satisfied with what was written on their behalf.
Bishop Moxley asked whether there were bishops who would work on drafting a statement with Mr. Carriere. A straw vote about whether a communique should be issued to the Church following each meeting of House of Bishops was held. The consensus was affirmative. Four bishops (representing each of the four ecclesiastical provinces) were asked to work with Mr. Carriere on the communiques. They were: Bishop Bruce (Ontario), Bishop Clarke (Canada), Bishop Light (British Columbia and Yukon), Bishop Phillips (Rupert's Land).
Text
That the House of Bishops move in to an in camera session with the Primate's Principal Secretary, Primate's Executive Assistant, the Director of Communication and Information Resources, the Director of Faith, Worship and Ministry and Bishop Sitembele. CARRIED HB Res. 06-10-07
Subjects
In camera meetings
Communication - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Church and the press - Anglican Church of Canada
Anglican Church of Canada - Pastoral letters and charges
Less detail

Ecumenical Pastoral for Peace

http://archives.anglican.ca/en/permalink/official458
Date
1984 February
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 14-2-84
Pastoral Letter
Date
1984 February
Source
House of Bishops. Minutes
Record Type
Resolution 14-2-84
Pastoral Letter
Mover
Bishop Snowden
Seconder
Bishop Wood
Prologue
It was decided to consult the House with reference to a request for support of an ecumenical Pastoral asking that Christian people in Canada, and others, join in a day of prayer and fasting "in order that we might more clearly discern what the Lord would have us do to fashion peace in this troubled world."
Text
That copies of the revised Ecumenical Pastoral be sent to all clergy with full explanation and suggestions for its use. CARRIED #14-2-84
Notes
AN ECUMENICAL PASTORAL LETTER
March 1, 1984
Amid the fear and anxiety created in the hearts of many people by the threat of nuclear war, Christians are called to bear witness to a hope that is firmly rooted in their Faith. This hope is not founded in some naive optimism, but in God revealed in Jesus Christ.
God in Christ encountered the tragic and sinful forces present in our world. These same forces continue to be sources of violence and oppression, immorality and injustice, but we do not despair. The eyes of faith which saw the Resurrection of our Lord discern the Spirit of God at work as a life-giver and as peace-maker among us. We believe the madness of the arms race can be stopped; the hearts of men and women can be changed from hearts of stone to hearts of flesh; we can beat our swords into ploughshares; we can choose life over death. But for this to happen we must not only speak about the "peace of God"; we must also work for peace.
If we dare to speak and act for God, we must be attentive to the word and wisdom which God is addressing to us. In this regard the Scriptures say that in prayer and fasting we grow in our knowledge of what God wills for us. Today we have great need to listen with care to our God.
At this time, therefore, when people everywhere are seeking the way to peace, we invite Christian people in Canada, people of other faith communities, and all men and women of goodwill to participate in a special day of prayer and of fasting. We suggest that this day be Friday, 13 April [1984].
For Christians, the Risen Christ has made peace available in a special way in the community that is the Church. To all humanity, the Creator God gives the precious gift of life. We invite all to celebrate this gift and to share in our hope for peace. We especially invite Christians to reflect on the hope that the Gospel makes possible as we celebrate the Feast of the Resurrection of the Lord during Easter.
May men and women everywhere be touched by the Peace of Christ and offer it one to another as a sign of hope in our troubled times.
Subjects
Peace - Canada
Peace - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Nuclear disarmament - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Nuclear warfare - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
War - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Prayer - Anglican Church of Canada
Anglican Church of Canada - Pastoral letters and charges
Interdenominational cooperation
APPENDIX C
Less detail
Date
1987 November
Source
Anglican News Service
Record Type
Pastoral Letter
Date
1987 November
Source
Anglican News Service
Record Type
Pastoral Letter
Text
Dear friends:
The General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada charges the Primate with "giving leadership in initiating...the policies of the church", and it is in that vein that I write.
The federal government has prepared proposals concerning free trade which are now before all citizens. I believe these proposals need to be before the church in a special way which brings to bear the light of our tradition and provides principles to guide us in such serious choices.
A TRADITION OF CONCERN
In our Old Testament tradition we are mindful of the protection which God demanded for the weak, the stranger, the widow and the orphan. In our New Testament tradition we hear the voice of Jesus who spoke of the "least" in society, such as the hungry and homeless, as so important that when we act generously to them, we act generously to Jesus himself. We recall that the early Church provided a community which freely shared its goods among themselves and provided an example where "none of their members was ever in want."
In its attempt to be faithful to these Gospel values the Anglican Church in Canada has called throughout its history for compassionate social policies, such as the extension of Unemployment Insurance (1950), addressing inflation - particularly for those on fixed incomes (1958), support for the family facing the social hazards of modern industrial society (1961), a comprehensive health program for all Canadians (1965), affordable housing - particularly for low income persons (1986).
Examples of our involvement at the corporate social level include the support of aboriginal people in pursuit of settlement of their land claims and their desire that they should be directly involved in making the decisions which affect their destiny. In the field of agriculture one could point to the deep concern in many dioceses about the future of our farming communities.
At the international level we are committed and actively involved through ecumenical coalitions such as Ten Days for World Development to see that wealth and power gaps between rich and poor, between "north" and "south" are closed. Whether it be a concern with refugees or with the outrageous misuse of the world's resources squandered on nuclear weapons, the concern for society's victims and voiceless has long been our special preoccupation.
THE PRINCIPLES
Out of this history and tradition of concern I believe that there are at least the four following principles which ought to shape our assessment of the appropriateness and righteousness of this major economic proposal referred to as "free trade":
1) Economic plans must not affect the most vulnerable members of our Canadian society, nor of our global family, in a negative way.
2) Economic or social agreements should not be undertaken if they limit society's members from making future decisions on behalf of the common good.
3) Economic agreements should not be undertaken which reduce our ability as a society to be good stewards of our environment and rich heritage of natural resources.
4) Ordinary citizens must be allowed opportunity to understand what is at stake and to take part in a meaningful way in decisions of major importance.
These principles need to be examined in greater detail:
In recent years, both the United States of America and Great Britain have experienced a growing disparity between the richest and poorest in society. The incidence of homelessness for example, in those countries, has shown a dramatic increase in the last few years, and Canada is displaying a similar trend.
If this trend is to be countered, as our tradition says it must be, we need to be certain that nothing in the free trade discussions hinders such a development. There are specific assurances that must be given, and I offer some examples.
- Some transnational corporations are more wealthy and more powerful than many national governments. If the predicted increased foreign investment by transnational companies follows in the wake of free trade, what assurances are in place that the Canadian government could withstand policies dictated by such companies? Many Canadians see in the current drug patent legislation an example of external pressure on a government to alter Canadian priorities so that the benefits would accrue to the research departments of transnational drug companies, here and abroad, while higher costs would be paid by average purchasers of the product. I believe we need to be assured that this is not a metaphor of a future dominated by increased transnational investment.
- The free trade agreement implies that a "level playing field" between Canada and the USA is desirable. If that leads to harmonizing tax structures, would it mean that the amount and use of tax revenue would also be in question? If any steps along those lines were taken that threatened, for example, present universal access to public health care or future access to day care, the principle I stated above would be imperilled.
- It is not yet clear that the determination of acceptable subsidies would give Canada a fair chance to try the kind of innovative economic programs that we have pioneered in North America. For example, the Anglican Church has asked that special attention be given to the role which a guaranteed annual income might play in bringing about a more equitable society in Canada; our concern is that such a policy could be challenged under the free trade agreement by the USA as an unfair subsidy.
On the other hand, the fact that military industries will be one of the few that will still be eligible for government subsidies, raises the concern that conventional industrial development and development to meet human need, particularly in less prosperous regions, will take lower priority.
Given that the agreement would grant open access to foreign investment and lead Canada to embark upon a continentalization policy with respect to energy, would Canada not be left particularly vulnerable during the next years of negotiations?
- At the international level, the agreement commits us to a joint approach with the USA in GATT trade negotiations. Canada has had a policy of "third world" aid which has been significantly more generous, on a per capita basis, than that of the USA. Increasingly Canada recognizes that fundamental assistance to the third world requires both debt relief and equitable trade arrangements. Would the commitment to joint approaches in trade negotiations at the international level endanger our ability to contribute to "third world" development? If so, then the basic principle stated above would be violated.
In a modern industrial and post industrial society, one of the essential methods to keep covenant with the poor is through the use of democratically controlled public policy and instruments of public policy.
From our earliest beginnings Canada has evolved as a society that has used public policy to address the needs of the entire community and to offer some protection to the victims of our socio-economic system. Whether it has been support for railways which joined this land together, the development of unemployment insurance, access to universal health care, or regional economic development grants, we have kept at our disposal a wide variety of social policy tools to shape our vision of the common good.
Recently for example, our National Executive Council has strongly criticized the Meech Lake accord because it has denied the right of citizens in the territories to participate in Canadian political and public life, it has diminished the rights of women, and negated the rights of native people to be consulted about their future. If participation were to be further weakened by the fact that decisions about our common future are being made by private interests at an even further remove, present injustices would be further compounded rather than remedied.
Will the free trade agreement take from future generations, important instruments for shaping public policy which until now have been at our disposal?
In 1983 the General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada supported the call for new alternative social and economic visions and strategies which "if they are useful, will call for fundamental re-ordering of our basic values and priorities." Part of such a re-ordering is greater sensitivity to the environmental implications of economic decisions.
It is observable that the further removed the decision-maker is from the environmental impact, the less sensitive the decisions become. We foul others nests, not our own. Continentalization of decisions about energy or resources could increase the tendency to depletion and environmental damages which already threatens us.
Our concern that aboriginal peoples be fully involved in decision-making which affects them has already been mentioned. It needs to be further emphasized here that through our global church we support the call for the development of societies which are not only just and sustainable - but also participatory.
On a matter of such general importance to the future of this country and to future generations of our citizens, the fullest public discussion, including a consideration of other alternatives, needs to be undertaken prior to any binding decision on free trade being taken.
CONCLUSION
I believe the government of Canada, as the proponent of change, has a serious obligation to demonstrate that these principles are not being, and will not be, violated in any undertaking we make to the United States of America. It must be clear that the proposals for free trade are not simply to provide economic efficiency for a few, but will provide demonstrable benefits for the people of all regions and at all economic levels, and will strengthen such instruments of compassion for society's victims as we now have and may need in the future.
It may be that debate in our country will enable everyone to perceive more clearly our responsibility to act as stewards of God's creation. I pray that we will discern more clearly God's call to build a society of justice and peace both among ourselves and throughout the world. I pray that we can bring these perceptions and discernments to bear at this critical moment of decision.
For those who wish further ecumenical resources related to this question, please write: Anglican Church of Canada, Social Action Ministries, 600 Jarvis Street, Toronto, Ontario, M4Y 2J6
Yours faithfully, Michael G. Peers, Archbishop and Primate
Subjects
Free trade - Canada
Free trade - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Free trade - Environmental aspects - Canada
Ecology - Canada
Ecology - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Economic justice - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Economics - Canada
Sustainable development - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Poverty - Religious aspects - Anglican Church of Canada
Guaranteed annual income - Canada
Anglican Church of Canada - Pastoral letters and charges
Less detail

30 records – page 1 of 3.