"The following papers are a collection of [five] essays that were written at the University of Oxford during the author's sabbatical from parochial ministry during the 1996/97 academic year. ... I aspired to understand more precisely the nature of the Anglican Church's propensity to accommodate the values and norms of its wider culture. Along with many other faithful Anglicans, I have been increasingly distressed to witness the Church bow more and more to the modern equivalent of the Roman Caesar". -- Intro.
Contents: Introduction -- Inclusive Language for God : the Impact on the Doctrine of God and Implications for Worship in the Anglican Church of Canada -- Beyond the Debate over Religious Pluralism: Toward Mission in a Plural Society -- Transforming the Family: Social Influences and Theological Responses -- The Church in Conflict: the Pastor as Conflict Manager -- Reconciling Authorities: an Impasse in the ARCIC Dialogue.
TORONTO, September 21, 2000 -- The Anglican Church of Canada has asked its members to write their Members of Parliament seeking a new approach to the legacy of residential schools.
More than 6,000 Indigenous persons are suing Canada because of their experiences in the schools, which operated from the 1800s until the 1980s. "To date, the government's only response has been through adversarial legal processes managed by the Department of Justice," said Archdeacon Jim Boyles, the church's General Secretary. "Legal costs are skyrocketing and very few people are being compensated".
In a letter to all Anglican parishes, Archdeacon Boyles wrote: Today, the problems arising out of the residential schools endanger the national and international ministry of our church, not primarily because of the people who suffered abuse and are seeking fair compensation, but because of legal actions launched by Canada's Department of Justice, and because, so far, our government has chosen to respond to this national crisis only through the courts and similar legal processes."
The Anglican Church of Canada, which assisted in the operation of about 26 of more than 80 schools, is involved with about 1600 of these suits. In many cases, the church is involved only because the Department of Justice has added the church as a third party. The church has said that legal costs could bankrupt the General Synod as early as next year.
The letter continues: "We believe with all our hearts that we can play a significant role in healing the broken relationships with Indigenous people. We stand by our Primate's apology from 1993; we accept our responsibility for the part we played in the schools, and we are prepared to commit substantial human and financial resources to assist with healing and reconciliation into the future."
Archdeacon Boyles said the government should give leadership to finding a more humane, less destructive response to the residential schools lawsuits. "Certainly we believe that a response guided only be lawyers and legal processes is inadequate and ill-advised."
Archdeacon Boyles said there have been some signs recently that the government is prepared to take a broader look at its policy. "We hope letters from a wide range of Canadians will encourage the government to move rapidly toward a more just solution."
For background information on the residential schools see www.anglican.ca/ministry/rs/reports.
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For further information contact: Archdeacon Jim Boyles 416-924-9199 ext. 280
Contact: Doug Tindal, Director of Information Resources, 416-924-9199 ext. 286; 905-335-8349 (residence); www.anglican.ca
"In a written response to a statement issue by eight Canadian bishops expressing their dissent from General Synod's decision to move toward solemnizing same-sex marriages, Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, pushed back against several of the points they had raised". "'The question you ask is really a question for all members of the church. To what extent can we and will we make room for one another ? To what extent will we pastorally accommodate one another ' Hiltz said in his letter". "Hiltz said that the motion, which was declared to have failed before being reversed the next day due to an error, was 'difficult', but it had allowed many synod members to 'experience the pain of another whose view on this matter is very different' in a 'very powerful way'." "The dissenting bishops' statement was released July 15  by then Bishop Stephen Andrews (Algoma); Bishop David Parsons (Arctic); Suffragan Bishop Darren McCartney (Arctic); Bishop Larry Robertson (Yukon); Bishop Fraser Lawton (Athabasca); and Bishop Michael Hawkins (Saskatchewan). Bishop David Edwards, of the diocese of Fredericton, was not an original signatory, but he added his name to the statement later".
"Some bishops have expressed concern about the possibility that some priests may go ahead and marry gay couples in the event that a resolution changing the marriage canon to allow same-gender marriages is rejected at General Synod this summer [July 2016], said Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada. 'If it's not approved, then, as we sometimes say .. there could be some "civil disobedience" on the part of clergy and parishes, and the bishops are going to have to handle that, because all of us that are ordained make a solemn promise to conform to the doctrine, discipline and worship of the Anglican Church of Canada', Hiltz said. Hiltz made the comments during an interview about the House of Bishops meeting April 4-8 " (p. 1). "Whatever the outcome of the vote at the General Synod meeting July 7-12 , Hiltz said, the bishops need to be aware that the church risks losing members who may be incensed to the point of leaving" (p. 1, 14). "The Journal also spoke with Bishop Larry Robertson of the diocese of Yukon, who said ... 'Regardless of what happens, people are going to be affected -- whether there is a "no" vote, or a "yes" vote, or a delay vote of whatever it is', he said. 'We spent some time on just how do we then deal with the hurt and the pain of a result that people weren't expecting or didn't want'" (p. 14).
"A desire to stay together as a church, despite a diverse range of understandings of what marriage is and should be. The theme arose consistently during discussions across three sessions at the November  meeting of Council of General Synod (CoGS) regarding the proposed amendment to the marriage canon". But exactly how this 'theme' or aim, may be fulfilled is more complicated. In a session titled 'Marriage Canon: Way Forward, Next Steps' on November 25 , CoGS members began to consider the potential for an acknowledgement of a variety of understandings of marriage within the Anglican Church of Canada" (p. 1.) "According to Canon (lay) David Jones, chancellor of General Synod, after being passed at General Synod 2016, the resolution (A051) to amend the marriage canon must go into its second reading with the same language. However, the constitution does provide that the resolution can be amended at its second reading" (p. 8). "Some in the church have lamented the need for a parliamentary system at all for the issue" (p. 8). Chancellor David "Jones, speaking at CoGS in response to [Anglican Indigenous Bishop] MacDonald's presentation, said that he is 'not discouraged at all by our legislative process', saying. 'There is some wisdom in the declaration principle that requires two readings at two successive General Synods', which gives the church the opportunity to 'listen and hear' the concerns of different groups" (p. 8).
Discussion continued about balancing the requirement for transparency with requests for anonymity and privacy. The Primate presented two questions for consideration: Which is your preferred option and which option could you not live with ?
Move out of Committee of the Whole
Moved by: The Ven. Harry Huskins, Prolocutor
IN COUNSEL TOGETHER
The Rev. Karen Egan explained that the goal was to begin a conversation around resolving conflict which would evolve and would continue over the next several meetings within the table groups.
The General Secretary presented four options, which were distilled from earlier discussions, for members to consider:
1. All submissions to the Commission will be posted on the web with attribution
2. Those intending to make a submission to the Commission may request, in advance of their submission, that their contribution not be attributed by name
3. Submissions to the Commission, while signed, will not be publicly associated by name
4. Two lists will be made public - one for submissions and a second list of those who made submissions.
Move into the Committee of the Whole
Moved by: The Very Rev. Peter Wall
Seconded by: Mr. Jim Sweeny
The General Secretary provided a brief report on outcome of conversations yesterday and asked members to identify their most and least preferred option.
Members fully discussed the four options (listed earlier).
New wording for option #2 was proposed as “The General Rule is that all submissions to the Commission will be posted on the web with attribution. However, a person intending to make a submission, prior to making the submission, may request permission from the Commission for their submission to be posted on the web without attribution, and the Commission may for good reason grant that request.”
At this point there was no clear consensus and the Primate requested the writing group confer and further discussion occur later in the morning
Move out of committee of the whole
Moved by: Ms. Jennifer Warren
Seconded by: Mr. Alex Starr
Members considered the following rewording of the second option for submissions “All submission will be posted to the web with attribution. However, prior to receiving a submission, the Commission may for good reason grant a request that a submission be posted without attribution”. Support was mixed and the working group asked to return with a specific recommendation for members.
After carefully considering the opinions expressed by members, the Chancellor recommended a proposal to Council.
That “All submissions to the Commission will be posted on the web with attribution."
The motion was put and by consensus was achieved in its favour. The Primate expressed his appreciation to the Very Rev. Peter Wall, the Ven. Dr. Michael Thompson, Canon David Jones and Mrs. Cynthia Haines-Turner.
Toronto, June 14, 1993 -- Is conflict always destructive ? Is it necessarily wasteful ? And is it unchristian ? Definitely not, assert the creators of "Making it Work : Managing Parish Conflict Creatively", an innovative new Anglican Church video, resource kit and training program.
"Making it Work" is designed to help parish lay leaders and clergy identify and resolve conflict before it becomes unmanageable: equally important, the project shows how conflict can be a creative, positive force in the life of a congregation.
The 15-minute video, accompanying workshop study guide and additional background, exercises and reference material will be available for ordering this September. In addition, every Canadian parish will be mailed a free "Making it Work" poster. A related two-day training event intended for diocesan leaders will take place February 18th and 19th, 1994 at the Toronto School of Theology. Participants will become more skilled in the use of the "Making it Work" kit, as well as honing their own conflict management and consultancy skills.
"The idea behind "Making it Work" originally came from a November 1991 national consultation on congregational development," comments the Rev. Paul MacLean, Consultant for Congregational Development and Multiculturalism in the National Church and member of the conflict management project team. "We became aware of the dramatic changes that are affecting congregations now, such as shifts in the understanding of liturgy or of the roles of clergy and laity. Any kind of change such as this -- even change for the better -- will produce conflict. To be a leader in a congregation today means to be engaged in conflict. If you avoid it, you eventually end up with submerged conflict, and that will kill congregational life."
To further define and research the issues, a conflict management project team was formed, made up of six volunteers with wide ranging backgrounds in congregational development and conflict management.
"We felt that we needed to offer some basic skills on low level conflict -- that is, conflict which could be managed without the intervention of an outside consultant. We believe very strongly that the expertise exists within the congregation to manage its own life, and that conflict management skills will help them do just that," continues Paul MacLean.
The team designed a questionnaire that was sent to all Anglican congregations in Canada, as well as bishops and diocesan program directors. Respondents were asked if they felt a resource on conflict was needed; what kinds of conflict they had experienced within their parish, and were asked to rate the intensity level of those conflicts. The response to the survey was overwhelmingly positive: almost all respondents believed that a conflict management resource kit would be extremely useful. Participants described several types of conflict their congregations had experienced, including issues concerning the liturgy, budgets and authority. Several of the stories (with changes to protect privacy) form the basis of case studies contained within the "Making it Work" kit.
The team hopes that parishes ordering the kit will invite leaders within their congregations, including members of advisory boards, parish councils and vestries, to watch the video and use the workshop guide and background material as catalysts for a discussion of their own issues. Theology schools are another target audience for the kit.
"Making it Work: Managing Parish Conflict Creatively" will be available through The Resource Centre, The Anglican Church of Canada, 600 Jarvis Street, Toronto, Ontario M4Y 2J6 in September, 1993. The cost is $25 per kit.
For more information, please contact: The Rev. Paul MacLean, Consultant, Congregational Development Phone (416) 924-9192
"In a progress report to the Council of General Synod (CoGS) on the work of the Commission on the Marriage Canon, chair [Lay] Canon Robert Falby noted that there had been 'some controversy' over the membership of the committee after it was announced in early 2014". "In fact, Bishop Larry Robertson of the diocese of Yukon voiced those concerns to CoGS at its meeting in Mississauga, Ont., on May 3 . He said he spoke not only his own views but also those of people in his diocese and beyond who brought their concerns to him because he is a member of CoGS ... the bishop said he and several people who had come to him questioned the idea that the commission was balanced. Falby replied that he was disappointed that Robertson didn't think the commission membership was balanced. 'I think it is', he said. His understanding was that members were chosen because they were 'people who occupied the middle road, with perhaps opinions previously expressed on one side or the other, but not anyone who had taken on an advocacy role for one side or the other'." "Falby said the goal is to have an open and transparent process, and comments are being posted with the intent of creating a public hearing. CoGS agreed that all submissions would have to be posted with attribution". "Canon Falby ... also assured CoGS that submissions will be vetted so that the authors of those containing offensive language will be invited to amend them".
"The church is, however, facing some tough struggles in the next three years leading up to 2019, when the motion to change the marriage canon to allow for same-sex marriages will be brought again to General Synod for final consideration. In the aftermath of the same-sex marriage vote, some things stood out: - Relationships will need to be rebuilt -- among bishops, among dioceses and among members .... - The House of Bishops will have to find a way out of this morass .... - Education about church polity is in order .... - There must be a rigorous process to ensure that votes are accurately counter and recorded". "The next three years will see periods of struggle for the church, yes. But struggling is a good thing. It is hard and it can get really messy, but it also means that the church is alive, trying to be better. It has been said time and time again that struggle, faced bravely and honestly, can lead to strength".