The diocese of New Westminster has become the first in Canada to adopt a formal policy and insurance plan for dealing with addicted clergy and staff. The policy points out that alcoholism and some forms of habitual drug abuse are treatable illnesses and advocates a pastoral, rather than punitive, approach.
See also "Beating alcholism saved priest's life" on pp. 1, 8.
Marty Levesque, who once "styled his hair in thick spikes pointing skyward ... wearing a leather jacket and jeans ... looked like a punk rocker", "found his spiritual home in the Anglican Church". After a troubled youth, drug addiction and some time spent on the streets, Levesque was able to complete an apprenticeship and graduate from college as a licensed mechanic. With the support of the community of St. Mary the Virgin Anglican church in Ottawa, and its rector the Rev. Ray Fletcher, Levesque discerned a vocation to ministry. He attended seminary at Huron University College in London, Ont. "During his time at seminary, he volunteered at London's Daily Bread food bank. He related to people. 'They're like my people', he says. 'Send me down with the drug addicts and the homeless and I'll tell them all about God'. Levesque graduated with distinction and was ordained to the diaconate last spring . On Nov. 30 , he was priested and became the rector at St. Andrew's Memorial in London. When asked about his vision for ministry, he says he wants to work with a vibrant worshipping community that lives missionally. He already has a plan to turn an empty plot of land owned by St. Andrew's into a community garden, where people can use the plots in return for a tenth of the produce they grow. 'We'll bless it on our altar, we'll send it up to the Daily Bread and the fellowship centre will feed people', says Levesque. 'My ministry is about teaching people to be disciples who are going to engage as Christians 24/7'."
"More than 1,400 people died from drug overdose in B.C. in 2017 -- 3.8 per day, with most of those deemed as accidental, fentanyl-based deaths. Sadly, my 20-year-old grandson was among them". The author, a "grandmother and [retired] Anglican priest writes about the tragic death of her grandson from opioid overdose in Vancouver". Before he died Gordon lived among the homeless communities in both Victoria and Vancouver before being "found on the street in cardiac arrest on September 8, 2017". Life support was withdrawn after brain death was confirmed on 11 September 2017. Article includes a poem the author wrote on All Saints Day 2017 at the Victoria cathedral which begins: "There you were / dancing in the sanctuary / A sort of harlequin note / to your light prancing steps/". Author "is an honorary assistant at Christ Church Cathedral in Victoria".
"I want to thank the Rev. Adela Torchia for writing about the loss of her grandson, Gordon, to a drug overdose ('Good night, sweet prince', Sept. 2018, p. 5). ... By sharing her experience and putting a human, identifiable face to this tragedy, she has allowed some of us on the periphery to understand more about those getting swept away in this tsunami of hopelessness. May by talking about this more openly, our society (and the church) will see a way forward to helping save these beautiful young lives".
There are no validated studies to show that creative stimulation results from the use of LSD, Sidney Katz tells teenagers in the May issue of the Canadian Churchman.
Writing in "Trend," a special youth supplement to the national monthly church paper, Mr. Katz states that the drug LSD does nothing for the unprepared mind.
"At the very most the claim can be that, in some instances, a highly talented and creative artist, who has mastered the techniques of his art, may derive certain added insights from the chemical," he writes.
Mr. Katz, well known writer on social affairs, says an LSD user often suffers the delusion that he has become creative under the influence of LSD. "What really happens is that he has lost his critical, discriminating capacity and this enables him to discern genius in his handiwork."
Mr. Katz, who says he has received confidential information from "anguished relatives and friends about the havoc being wrought by mind-expanding chemicals," predicts more tragedies will occur until teenagers, parents, doctors, clergy and public officials approach the problems realistically.
Wisely and cautiously used, LSD may prove to be a boon to mankind. It may, in certain carefully selected cases, enhance creativity and religious feeling, he states.
"But, for the most part," he says, "psychedelic substances are being used destructively. The full story of suicides, accidents, disrupted lives and mental breakdown precipitated by the use of LSD has yet to be told."
"Churches across Canada have a role to play in the current opioid overdose crisis, says the Rev. Monique Stone, rector of the three-point Parish of Huntley in the diocese of Ottawa" (p. 1). Stone "who has a 16-year-old daughter, organized a Naloxone workshop at St. Thomas the Apostle Anglican Church on February 23  for 20 clergy, including Diocesan Bishop John Chapman, Naloxone is used to temporarily block the effects of opioid overdoses" (p. 1). "Since the clergy gathering, at least five other Anglican churches in the diocese have either held or were planning similar workshops" (p. 12). "Stone has also offered to accompany youth who are apprehensive about getting a Naloxone kit from the pharmacy. 'They can come to see me and I will walk with them to the pharmacy, and I will get a new Naloxone kit for them', she said. 'We are a non-judgmental sanctuary for anyone who needs to get a Naloxone kit'" (p. 12).
"The Council for Social Service has had the privilege from time to time of publishing the Reports of studies made concerning issues which are related to the Council's work. The Report of a Special General Synod Committee on Narcotic Addiction is one such. The Bishop of Ottawa [the Rt. Rev. Ernest S. Reed], as Chairman of the Committee gathered together a group of specialists who, over a period of years, gave careful consideration to this problem. Once again the Church has performed a service for the whole community. The Report of the Committee was received most favourably at the Annual Meeting of the Executive Council of General Synod meeting at Hamilton, in September 1960. The resolutions arising out of this Report form a part of this Bulletin. Executive Council requested The Council for Social Service to publish the Report in full `for information and future study'. This Bulletin is the result." -- Intro.
Contents: Narcotic Addiction : A Report Prepared by The General Synod Committee on Narcotics -- Resolutions Adopted by Executive Council of General Synod September 1960 -- Some Recent Additions to the Library.
Be it resolved that the resolution as submitted by the Social Service Committee of the Diocese of New Westminster (mover: Rev. E.S. Higgs; seconder: Brig. A.E. Bell-Irving) having reference to Drug Traffic and Narcotics Habituation, and which is extracted from the resolution adopted by the General Synod of 1952, be referred by the Executive Council to a Special Committee which may co-opt specialists in this field, looking to a report to the next annual meeting of the Executive Council. CARRIED in both Houses.
"The purpose of the Bulletin is to present to its readers various, and sometimes differing, view-points on social subjects. Its object is, therefore, information and not propaganda. The Editorial Board does not necessarily endorse all, or any, of the opinions expressed in its publications". -- p. 3.
Contents: [List of] Publications of the Council for Social Service of the Church of England in Canada Available for Distribution -- The Problem of Habit-Forming Drugs / C.W. Vernon.
"A difficult, and in some parts of Canada at least, a very pressing social problem is to be found in the widespread use of habit-forming narcotic drugs for other than strictly medical or scientific purposes. This Bulletin will deal very briefly with: 1. The Habit-Forming Narcotic Drugs. 2. The Result of Drug Addiction. 3. The Prevalence of Drug Addiction. 4. The Causes of Drug Addiction. 5. The Treatment of the Drug Addict. 6. The Source of Supply. 7. The Remedy" (p. 3).