The Primate expressed appreciation to the Diocese of Calgary for the wonderful ‘exposure day’, which took members to various parts of the diocese: the Cathedral, the inner city and the new parish of St. Martin’s; Drumheller; and Head Smashed in Buffalo Jump and Brocket on the Peigan Reserve.
The Primate and the Council thanked Terry Thompson, who has resigned as Archivist of the General Synod after 24 years of service, to become Deputy Director of Information Resources at the University of Calgary. Terry shared ‘some of her favourite things’ and thanked those who had been her mentors.
- a giant bouquet to Dianne Izzard for her organization of this meeting
- confession and absolution are consistently omitted from worship at national gatherings
- desire to hear more of the plans and stories of the Anglican Appeal, not just financial information
- only English is used in worship at the Council
- some documents are received late
- terrible chairs to sit on in plenary
- predominant use of 19th century hymns
- glossary of Faith Worship and Ministry acronyms
- need for recycling box and non-scented markers
- too much business being undertaken at table groups and being delegated to the Planning and Agenda Team; elected members not giving direction to principles and values that should undergird the planning process
- Anglican Journal, Ministry Matters and the website have received 22 awards from the Associated Church Press
Council heard from the General Synod Planning Committee about plans for General Synod 2004 . It was agreed that the theme will be “See! I Am Making All Things New!”.
Ann Tottenham gave an interim report from the task force to review Canon III on the Primacy . The final report and recommendations will come to the November meeting of Council.
The Council endorsed a resolution of the House of Bishops that welcomed the appointment of Bishop William Hockin as Episcopal Visitor in the Diocese of New Westminster, and concurred with a resolution of the House that, while appreciating his desire to be helpful, urged Bishop Terry Buckle to withdraw his offer of episcopal oversight for 7 parishes seeking alternative episcopal oversight in the Diocese of New Westminster.
The Council recommended that General Synod approve for distribution and use where authorized by the Bishop the form for ‘The Blessing of a Civil Marriage’ as modified from the Book of Occasional Celebrations , including an amendment that makes provision for the couple to say ‘acknowledging our union to be lifelong, until we are parted by death, we ask God to bless our marriage’.
The Council expressed its thanks to the Diocese of Calgary for their warm hospitality and hard work on local arrangements, particularly Bishop Barry Hollowell and Linda Barry-Hollowell, Dairel and Steven Batemen, Richard LeSueur, David Stauft, and Sidney Black.
The Council celebrated the eucharist, with the Primate presiding and preaching.
(After lunch, the Missionary Society met.)
The Council reconvened and heard partner’s reflections from Mark Harris of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada , who noted with regret that this is his last meeting, as his term on the ELCIC’s national council comes to an end with their national convention in June. He compared his experience of having someone live with in one’s house as opposed to only asking someone to dinner.
Mark noted fatigue in the group. This is manifested in becoming bogged down in procedural matters and unwillingness to engage in some substantial issues. He noted the loving care given to try to develop a process for addressing same sex unions that will be just and fair, and hoped that that same loving care would be given to relationships with aboriginal members of the church. There is suppressed frustration and anger, and he trusts that our church has the grace to be able to find its way through this together; there will be challenging questions for all to be addressed. He sees the Anglican Church being of this nation, engaging with the issues of Canadian society.
The Prolocutor and Council thanked Mark for his time as a partner.
The Council appointed Ernst and Young to be the auditors for the year 2003.
The Council elected Bill Prentice as the co-chair (with Cynthia Haines-Turner) of the Mission Coordination Group.
Peter Elliott reported from the Planning and Agenda Team that it did not prove possible to have a meeting of the Anglican Council of Indigenous Peoples alongside the Council in the fall; the team is exploring the possibility of this happening in March, 2004.
Archbishop David Crawley, as Senior Metropolitan, read a letter from Archbishop Michael Peers indicating notice of his resignation as Primate effective February 1, 2004 .