THAT General Synod refer the statement from the Diocese of Algoma on the matter of `Recognition of Ministries and Intercommunion' to the Inter-Church Relations Committee. CARRIED IN BOTH ORDERS
The statement of the Diocese of Algoma is as follows:
"Since the Diocesan Synod will not meet until after General Synod 1973, the Archbishop and the Executive Committee of the Diocese of Algoma respectfully present the following statement on the matter of "Recognition of Ministries and Intercommunion."
1. The Ministry and the Receiving of Sacraments involve theological studies primarily. It is evident that, in Canada, religious opinion has not kept time with scholarship in other parts of the world.
2. Some evidence exists that the failure of Draft Plan One to find general acceptance at the grass-roots, as well as among many of the leaders, is the source of the suggestion that the Anglican Church of Canada should adopt the Federalist form of cooperation which does not involve organic union. Federalism has been tried in many parts of England and the U.S.A. Methodists, Congregationalists and Presbyterians are not (generally) happy about this theory, which they originally introduced to encourage union.
3. No part of the Anglican Communion has officially accepted `Recognition of ministries.' Organic Union must come first.
a) Catholic Anglicans would have real difficulties on conscience.
b) Middle-of-the-road Anglicans might require some conditions, e.g. ecumenical conversations, before accepting `Recognition of Ministries.'
c) Evangelical Anglicans have always accepted the validity of any Sacrament ministered by a non-episcopally ordained Presbyter.
4. In view of the break-through about the Eucharist, given to us by the Roman Catholic-Anglican Commission, and the fact that their next meeting is on the Ministry, a full report of the Roman Catholic-Anglican report on the Ministry should be available to General Synod.
5. Intercommunion should not be confused with Full Communion. It is a step, and certainly involves reciprocal communion. Various Provinces of the Anglican Communion are now willing to admit baptised persons (non-Anglicans) in good standing in their churches to Holy Communion for various reasons and on special occasions. Confirmation should not be connected with Holy Communion but with Baptism.
6. Receiving Holy Communion, at a liturgy celebrated by a non-episcopally ordained Presbyter is much more difficult for some Anglicans, and their scruples have to be accepted because the Solemn Declaration and the Preface to the ordinal are certainly capable of this interpretation to say the least.
7. If General Synod 1973 wishes to avoid further confusion and misunderstanding, it must decide whether it wants to continue receiving draft plans until one is acceptable, as the Principles of Union document seems to indicate OR it must adopt the `Recognition of Ministries and Intercommunion' principles. We do not think the two procedures can be in operation together, as each represents a contrary principle to the other.
a) Study the Roman Catholic-Anglican Report on the Ministry when produced.
b) Either suspend the present conversations until the theology of the `Recognition of Ministries' is better understood, and until there is a genuine and loving desire for union;
c) or, make a public statement that other methods than `draft plans' will be tried, and that the present commissions will be disbanded.
d) While the matters of conscience are important in draft plans, they are far more important in the more unstructured procedure of `Recognition of Ministries and Intercommunion.' Every public statement must define clearly the procedure concerning priests or lay communicants who have scruples about these matters."