Foundation issues clarion call for artists

Published November 1, 2004

Calling all Anglican dancers, drummers, flautists, painters, sewers, composers, singers — the Anglican Foundation’s Sacred Arts Trust wants to know what you are up to.

The foundation, which is based at the church’s national office in Toronto, is planning a celebration on May 7, 2005 of the 10th anniversary of the Sacred Arts Trust and the 80th birthday of its founder, Canon Graham Cotter.

The planned location will be Church of the Redeemer in Toronto. “We intend to (have) a fundraising celebration of liturgical art in music, dance, readings, drama and fabric art,” foundation director Canon John Erb wrote in his fall newsletter.

“Please let us know what you know,” he wrote. “We want your stories to gain some knowledge of your special expressions in liturgy. This knowledge can then be shared with other churches so that you and we are not working in isolation but as a larger liturgical community. Then we will see where all of this will lead.”

The organizing committee for the event includes jazz musicians Brian Barlow and Canon Tim Elliott, dramatist Sally Armour Wotton, composer Rev. Paul Gibson and Mr. Cotter.

The Sacred Arts Trust supports liturgical expressions in the arts and in 2002 organized a conference in Toronto called the Sacred Jazz Festival. Participants from the United States and Canada met for a day to discuss the place of jazz music in worship. The event concluded with a vibrant jazz eucharist service at St. James Cathedral.

It “resulted in increased awareness of sacred jazz in liturgical settings,” wrote Mr. Erb. “It caught on like wildfire in the hearts of so many, and now we hear rumblings of such music activity throughout the country. Not only jazz, but other non-traditional forms of music are contributing to worship and Anglicans are being caught up in new liturgical expression,” he wrote.

The foundation, with $12 million in assets, makes grants and loans in support of church building and renovation projects. It also supports theological students with bursaries, education in preaching skills and dialogue between the Anglican and Orthodox churches.


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