That this General Synod approve the amendments to Canon IX as approved by the Council of General Synod. Attached is the Canon and the amended section is shown in bold. CARRIED WITHOUT DEBATE Act 40
Note: Canon IX is attached as Appendix B.
[In the electronic database bold type is indicated by pointed brackets i.e. ].)
LAY RETIREMENT PLAN
1. The Lay Retirement Plan is established to provide Pensions for lay employees of the Church who are not members of the General Synod Pension Plan.
2. There shall be a fund established in conjunction with the Plan under a written trust agreement in Canada, which fund shall be designated as "The Lay Retirement Fund", for the purpose of providing benefits in accordance with this Canon and the Regulations. The Lay Retirement Fund shall be composed of the monies received from the Participating Employers and Members, transfers and other amounts for provision of Plan benefits together with interest, dividends, earnings, accumulations and accretions, less the amounts expended in the payment of Plan benefits and the expenses of administration of the Plan and the Lay Retirement Fund.
The Anglican Church of Canada has just completed a through-going self-criticism in the presence of third world critics. A four day "Partners in Mission" consultation wound up on Tuesday, May 29 at the University of Toronto.
The concept of Partners in Mission is an accepted one in the Anglican Communion throughout the world. It involves one of the twenty-seven independent, self-governing churches which constitute the Anglican Communion, in a process of critical examination of its programmes, life, structures and priorities in the presence of "Partners" from other countries, churches and cultures. Canadian Anglicans have acted as Partners in such consultations in several African churches and in Ireland, the USA, the Caribbean, South America and Asia.
During the past week more than a hundred Canadian Anglicans, representing the Church's thirty dioceses from Newfoundland to Vancouver Island, and north beyond the Arctic Circle, gathered in the nation's Capital. They were joined by Partners from Burundi, West Africa, the Sudan and South Africa, from the West Indies, New Zealand, Ireland and England, the USA and Asia. There were also representatives from the Lutheran and Roman Catholic Churches in Canada.
In their final report to the consultation, these Partners said, "We have come from continents which have experienced poverty, despair, effects of nuclear holocaust, inhuman racist regimes, military dictatorships, trampling of human rights and division of nations on ideological grounds. We have come too, from countries which are rich and affluent, and from sectors in the Third World which share in those riches and those who do not. In these situations we have experienced sufferings of all kinds - the rat-race of consuming more and more, of being bored, lonely and fearful. Yet we know that through these sufferings we also experience hope for we worship the crucified and risen Lord. In this spirit we share four examples of challenges we see based upon what we have seen and heard at this Consultation."
Their four areas of challenge were the Natives of Canada, the French Fact, the Ministry of the Laity and the Ecumenical Dimension.
The Partners observed, "The Natives of Canada have suffered through hundreds of years of genocide. Entire tribes and people have vanished from the face of the earth. Many of them today live in poverty, illness, early death rates and little or no education. To correct these wrongs requires a change in attitude, a death to the old ways and a rebirth under God." They agreed that they "must commend the Anglican Church of Canada for its long history of ministry to the Native People," but questioned whether native people have been trained for or allowed to assume positions of leadership in the church's structures.
They declared that "lumping the Native problem with the white rural or white isolated area problem will not work." The Partners had all travelled fairly extensively in Canada prior to the Consultation. From that experience and from their discussions in Ottawa, they concluded that there is a "strong undercurrent of prejudice against the Native People in Canada." They acknowledged that there are no simplistic answers, but urged the creation of a more adequately staffed Native "desk or portfolio" on a national basis.
The Partners described the French Fact as, "A people under the threat of losing its identity, its right to live according to its culture, can hardly act as a partner and may become, as a consequence, a burden to the country instead of taking its place as an enriching part of the cultural mosaic of Canada." They continued, "In a word, a whole mentality must be surrendered in order to communicate within the new milieu," and urged that "The Church must study this matter in the spirit of Christ, that is, in a spirit of love, detachment and sharing."
They added, "while fighting for the rights of this or that group, we must not forget that rights are first and foremost human rights; they are not French, they are not English; they are human, but they apply to French or English or Indians or West Indians."
An "inherited clericalism...which is still accepted as the norm" came under sharp criticism in the section of the Partners' report on the Ministry of the Laity. "The real participation of the laity in the mission of the church may pose a threat to the clergy" but that participation must not be "considered a privilege, a temporal innovation or a concession to the spirit of modern times." "A multitude of habits, ready-made judgements and reactions need to be stripped away from us before we can expect to progress very far in dealing with the key issue of the ministry of the laity."
In discussing the Ecumenical Dimensions, the Partners declared, "The general impression given is that the Anglican Church of Canada is self-sufficient and does not naturally look outside itself, whether to other churches in Canada or to other Anglican churches around the world, for working partners in the process of developing the issues which face them in their common service of the Mission of Christ to the world."
Although in principle the Anglican Church of Canada is committed to the "Lund Declaration" (that churches should not do separately what it is possible from them to do ecumenically), the Partners suggested that should mean "looking first to see what things can be done together and not regarding ecumenical cooperation as an optional extra."
The over-all report from the total membership of the Consultation is wide-ranging and lengthy. The discussions gradually crystallized into eight areas in the life of the church today:
- Mission: Theology and Practice
- Christian Lifestyle
- Commitment and Stewardship
- Ministry: Lay/Clergy
- Social Justice and Action
- Ethnic, Cultural and Linguistic Groups
- Communications and Structures
In each section there was a thorough evaluation of the present situation in the Anglican Church of Canada and an attempt to discover strengths and weaknesses in its life. Strategies for the future were also developed.
These reports will now receive wide distribution in the Dioceses and Ecclesiastical Provinces of the Church and in various national committees of General Synod, for study and discussion. They will have a major influence on the Church's National Programme Committee and National Executive Council when they meet this fall, and on the General Synod of the Church which will be held at the University of Trent in Peterborough in June 1980.
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For copies of the reports or further information, please contact:
The Rt. Rev. H.R. Hunt stated that Mr. E.G. Freeman had resigned as Supervisor of Laymen's Work. In view of the restructuring of the Departments, the Executive Committee feels it would be undesirable at this particular time to appoint a replacement and will carry this item forward. In the meantime, appropriate arrangements are being made for this aspect of the Church's work to continue.
That this National Executive Council expresses its deep appreciation of the valuable services rendered to the Church by Mr. Eric G. Freeman during the years that he occupied the position of Supervisor of the Division of Laymen's Work, and wishes him God's blessing in his new work. CARRIED
"As the new director of the University of Toronto's Munk School of Global Affairs, Stephen Toope stands at an interesting spot where academia intersects with the public square. The son of an Anglican priest arrived here by a fascinating road that took him from his hometown of Montreal, across Canada and around the world". An international law scholar "Toope has also devoted time to the Anglican Church of Canada as a member of a task force working with then primate Michael Peers, considering the church's future and relevance in an increasingly secular world, advising the diocese of New Westminster on canon law as it considered blessing same-sex unions, and as the chair of the Primate's World Relief and Development Fund (PWRDF) Committee". Asked "Are there some big-picture things that you think are important for the church and organizations, like PWRDF, to think about now ?" Toope replied: "One of them is this question of cross-cultural connections. We are creating terrible divisions that seem quite impenetrable at a political level, so finding ways within civil society to create open space for people to connect [is vital]. I remember one of the first trips I did with PWRDF -- there was a session in Thailand for Singhalese Buddhists and Tamils to get together in a safe place, partly supported by the Primate's Fund -- to be part of that creation of open space for some dialogue. Another area that strikes me as increasingly important is income inequality. How do we get societies to be thinking about the unfairness of ever-increasing Gini coefficients, where you've got the bottom part of the population having access to almost no resources and the top one percent -- 10 per cent, 20 per cent -- having access to almost all resources ?"
That this National Executive Council request that dioceses ensure that lay employees be included in the next stage of the consultation process of the Compensation Study (i.e. the Diocesan presentation to share results and recommendations and discuss the implementation process.) CARRIED #59-11-88
Eric G. Freeman, supervisor of laymen's work for the Anglican Church of Canada, is leaving the post to become manager of the Stationery and Office Equipment Guild of Canada, Inc. His resignation is effective February 15.
Mr. Freeman has been engaged in leadership work among Anglican laymen for the last seven years during which he has become well-known to churchmen throughout Canada. He has also worked closely with the general division of laymen's work of the Episcopal Church in the United States and has represented Anglican laymen at conferences overseas.
Born and educated in Montreal, he served with the RCAF for four years during the Second World War and subsequently had a broad experience in sales, service and public relations. Prior to joining the department of information and stewardship at Anglican national headquarters here he was assistant Ontario manager of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce.
"The current issue of the 'Journal' features two articles that are more closely linked than one might at first suspect. In Robert Black's examination of the French-Canadian mission of Quebec, lay leadership was crucial in convincing Bishop Mountain of the need to supply Anglican services in French. .... In the second article, Alan Hayes argues that the lay members of synod in the Diocese of Toronto were very conscious of their role. They believed that if they were to fund the church, they were also to have a role in the decisions of the church. ... Both papers deal with key issues in which laity showed an uncustomary determination" (p. 3).