The Canadian Churchman Board of Trustees report was presented by Dr. Balcom on behalf of the Chairman, Dean Lundy.
Special note was made of the awards won by the Canadian Churchman and the new statement of Editorial Policy.
Six out of nine awards were presented to the Canadian Churchman by the Associated Church Press for: general excellence; best news; best feature articles; best photography; graphics; and for the monthly newsbrief section.
The Council discussed the proposed statement of editorial policy.
Moved by Balcom, Seconded by Childs,
That the National Executive Council approve the statement of Editorial Policy with a re-arranging of the order of paragraphs.
Moved by Landon, Seconded by Whytehead
That the statement on page 2 be reworded to begin as follows: 'The purpose of the Canadian Churchman is to reflect and further the life of the Anglican Church of Canada, an in particular ...". DEFEATED
Moved by Valentine, Seconded by Smith
That the wording of the first paragraph be changed to read: 'Canadian Churchman is the national newspaper of the Anglican Church of Canada, but it is not the official voice of the Church. As an independent Christian newspaper it is encouraged to express under God the mind of Christ, through editorials and through the presentation of news and features, without fear or favour, but with balance, good taste and a human touch.
Moved by Tomlin, Seconded by Fenwick
This this National Executive Council move into a committee of the whole. DEFEATED
That this motion be tabled and be referred back to the Editorial Committee for re-writing, taking into consideration the discussion of this Council. CARRIED
The Primate thanked the Board of Trustees, the Editorial Committee and the National Executive Council for working so seriously on this subject.
TORONTO (June 30) -- The Anglican Church of Canada has announced staffing and structural changes to bring the national staff organization in line with the priorities and focus approved by its chief governing body earlier this month.
The key element in the new structure, as described by Archbishop Michael Peers, is a nine-person management team to direct the work and priorities in those areas approved by General Synod in Ottawa.
The restructuring has resulted in the elimination of three staff positions: Congregational Development consultant, Editor and General Manager of the Anglican Journal, and Director of the Anglican Book Centre.
Congregational development work will no longer be initiated at the national level. The Anglican Journal and Anglican Book Center will both come under the management of a new Information Resources Group. This reflects the priority General Synod gave to the development of a coordinated communications strategy that would incorporate all aspects of information dissemination under one umbrella department.
Archbishop Peers said the editorial independence of the Anglican Journal was affirmed by General Synod and will continue under a new editor, to be appointed. Carolyn Purden, who held the editor and general manager position at the Journal, was given a severance package. The new editor will be responsible for the editorial direction of the paper, but not its financial management.
General Synod also called on the national organization to bring more focus and integration to the work it does. It recommended a more consultative as opposed to legislative, style as well as more networks and fewer formal structures.
The management team announced by the Primate will include himself, the General Secretary and seven directors responsible for Financial Management; Financial Development; Faith, Worship and Ministry; the Primate's World Relief and Development Fund; Partnerships; Pensions; and Information Resources.
In announcing the changes to staff, Archbishop Peers stressed that they were not intended to effect a downsizing in staff. What they are meant to do, he said, is reflect the wishes of General Synod and implement a new way of working.
"In the long term we are looking at ways we can do our work better together, not better with fewer people," he said. "What we have been talking about is reorganization, not downsizing."
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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
Following discussions at our February meeting, this House wishes to express the following message to the committee presently evaluating the Anglican Journal:
The House recognizes the importance of the Anglican Journal and appreciates its value as an instrument of the gospel both within and beyond the Church.
The House views the task of the Journal as a ministry to and of the Church. That ministry is both educational and prophetic in nature. The distinct task of the Church paper, when compared to the secular press, is to encourage and connect the members of the Church with news of the life of the Church, and to interpret world events from a Christian point-of-view.
To this end, the editor of the Anglican Journal needs to be a person who understands the work as a calling to ministry. The person appointed should be chosen as one who is informed by a convinced Christian conscience and who is an active participant in a local Christian community.
In searching for people to work for the Church paper we believe it is the task of the Church to identify and encourage active members who have journalistic skills and experience to engage in this work as a calling and ministry. CARRIED
Background on the history of the 'Anglican Journal' newspaper (formerly the 'Canadian Churchman' and originally the 'Dominion Churchman') with special attention to the issue of editorial independence. "Telling only 'good news' stories about the church, however, is not how the church has defined the Journal's job. Its mandate is to be 'a national newspaper of interest to the members of the Anglican Church of Canada, with an independent editorial policy and not being an official voice of or for the church'. This means the Journal's editor and staff are tasked with serving the interests of readers, and the editor is free to decide what goes into the paper without direction from anyone outside it, even leaders of the church". "The editorial policy, endorsed by the Executive Council in 1977, spelled out that 'Canadian Churchman is the national newspaper of the Anglican Church of Canada, but it is not the official voice of that church' and referred to it as 'an independent newspaper'." "An earlier draft of this policy, written in 1976 by Norman Smith, a member of the paper's board of trustees" said "a live church must .. embrace rather than stifle argument and righteous indignation, else its rules and ways will be imposed from the top". In a similar vein, Archbishop Colin Johnson of Toronto, speaking to the Council of General Synod (CoGS) about the Anglican Journal in 2011, said: "Editorial independence is important even if annoying; it provides vibrancy on the part of the church".
That General Synod approve the following Terms of Reference for the Anglican Journal/Journal Anglican:
1. Anglican Journal/Journal Anglican is the national newspaper of the Anglican Church of Canada, but it is not the official voice of the Church.
2. The newspaper has a primary responsibility to inform Anglicans in Canada about the domestic and international work of their church, but also to provide relevant news of the worldwide communion and from other faith communities. It has a role in the presentation of our faith and in stimulating debate on issues of concern to the church.
3. As a church-sponsored and financed paper, the Anglican Journal/Journal Anglican is an important instrument of communication for the Anglican Church of Canada. Acting in accordance with priorities and policies established by the Information Resources Committee in consultation with the Anglican Journal/Journal Anglican Advisory Board and approved by the Council of the General Synod, the editor makes all decisions on editorial content.
4. The paper is encouraged to express the full range of opinion within the Anglican Church community. It is permitted to take an independent stance in its editorials. When such expression of opinion conflicts with official church policy, as stated by decisions of the General Synod or the Council of the General Synod, the paper will, at the same time, carry an explanation by an informed spokesperson of the official position of the church.
5. The Anglican Journal/Journal Anglican operates in accordance with the Statement of Ethics and Standards of Professional Practice of the Associated Church Press.
6. The Information Resources Committee is the publisher of Anglican Journal/Journal Anglican.
7. The Information Resources Committee reports to the General Synod and the Council of the General Synod.
8. The Anglican Journal/Journal Anglican Advisory Board shall consist of:
- three members appointed by the Council of the General Synod
- one member of the Information Resources Committee, from among the members of the committee
- one member appointed by the Primate.
9. The Advisory Board shall elect a Chairperson.
10. The Chairperson shall be responsible for summoning meetings of the Advisory Board, setting the agenda and presiding at the meetings.
11. The Advisory Board shall meet a minimum of twice a year. It reports to each meeting of the Information Resources Committee and presents its budget to the Council of the General Synod through the Information Resources Committee.
12. Other responsibilities:
a) to develop and propose to the Information Resources Committee long term policy for the editorial, advertising and circulation departments, and to monitor its implementation. Long term policy statements are approved by the Council of the General Synod and shall be reviewed by the Advisory Board at least every three years;
b) to work with the Information Resources Committee in recommending to the Council of the General Synod a candidate for appointment as Editor of the paper;
c) to review at each meeting, editorial content of previous issues in the light of editorial policy guidelines;
d) to provide suggestions for future coverage;
e) to be available to provide advice to the Editor on editorial or policy matters;
f) to interpret the work of the paper to the General Synod, the Council of the General Synod and church members across the country;
g) to solicit and evaluate feedback and advice from readers;
h) to develop advertising strategy;
i) to consider and propose to the Information Resources Committee a process for approving business contracts for production and distribution of the paper.
13. The editor:
a) is a member of the National Staff and the primary executive officer of the Anglican Journal/Journal Anglican;
b) is accountable to the Primate for performance and responsible to the Publisher for implementation of policy;
c) discharges the functions, duties and responsibilities as outlined in the position description approved by the Publisher;
d) operates the Anglican Journal/Journal Anglican within the terms of reference, editorial and other policies adopted by the Publisher, and approved by the Council of the General Synod. CARRIED Act 40
That the terms of reference as published in the 13th edition of the Handbook of General Synod - Appendix C be rescinded and replaced by the following:
ANGLICAN JOURNAL - TERMS OF REFERENCE
1. Anglican Journal is a federally incorporated organization with controlling interest held by the General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada. It was federally incorporated as of January 23, 2002 under the Canada Corporations Act as Anglican Journal/Journal Anglican and qualified for charitable status on April 12, 2002 (BN 86598 8116 RR0001).
2. The objects of the Corporation are:
(a) to advance and present the Christian faith and stimulate debate on issues of concern to the Church;
(b) to inform Anglicans in Canada about the domestic and international work of the Church and to provide relevant news of the worldwide communion and of other faith communities;
(c) in furtherance of the foregoing, to do the following:
a. produce, publish and distribute a national newspaper with an independent editorial policy representing Anglicans in Canada, but not being the official voice of the Church;
b. provide a means to distribute other Anglican materials and publications as inserts to the national newspaper;
c. provide a means to distribute other information of value and interest to Anglicans;
d. maintain pertinent information on Anglican membership for the national and diocesan offices of the Anglican Church of Canada in a database format.
3. Anglican Journal is an important instrument of communication for the Anglican Church of Canada. The newspaper is encouraged to express the full range of opinion within the Anglican Church community and is editorially independent. The editor makes all decisions on editorial content. When expression of opinion conflicts with official church policy, as stated by decisions of the General Synod or the Council of the General Synod, the newspaper will, at the same time, carry an explanation by an informed spokesperson of the official position of the church.
4. Anglican Journal operates in accordance with the Statement of Ethics and Standards of the Professional Practice of the Associated Church Press.
The Board of Directors
5. The Board of Directors is the publisher of Anglican Journal and supervises the management of the corporation. The Board of Directors reports to the controlling member (General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada) through the Council of General Synod and liaises with the Communications and Information Resources Committee.
6. The Board of Directors is responsible for the appointment of all officers and establishes the terms of engagement of the Editor. Powers and duties of other officers are such as the terms of their engagement call for or as the Board specifies. CARRIED Act 58
Dissenters should be given representation on the Anglican-United Church general commission on union, The Canadian Churchman states in an editorial in its May issue.
The Churchman, the Anglican Church of Canada's national monthly newspaper, charges that "loyal members...with a dedication and record of service second to none" and who now oppose union with the United Churches, have been excluded from the commission.
Each denomination has a group of 20 persons on the commission. The Anglican group was appointed by the church's National Executive Council in consultation with another committee, Christian Unity and the Church Universal. The commission meets for the second time June 13-14.
The Churchman says the Anglican Church needs to review the membership of the commission, and must exercise extreme sensitivity in its appointments to the future sub-commissions which will study legal, doctrinal, liturgical and other matters.
"It will be a tragedy if the dissenters are left as a wailing voice in the wilderness. They have been loyal members of the Anglican Church of Canada," the editorial states.
The editorial says church union must be union which draws together people of faith and conviction in a common commitment to Christ, not just an amalgamation for institutional convenience.