Letters to the Editor

Published June 1, 2009

The Anglican Journal

APCI looks for new beginning and a fresh start

Dear editor,

Re: Suffragan bishop election deferred (May Journal).

I find the actions by the provincial house of bishops for B.C. and Yukon to be disturbing, condescending and verging on the reprehensible.

The Anglican Parishes of the Central Interior (APCI) closely followed the procedures used when Bishop Gordon Light was elected suffragan bishop.

APCI, the nominating committee and the nominating assembly all proceeded in good faith and at considerable cost of both time and money.

APCI has started the visioning process to find our way forward, eventually leading to the reformation as a diocese.

The very nature of the position of suffragan bishop with responsibilities for APCI is self-limiting.

When APCI ceases to exist and is replaced with a diocese, the position of suffragan bishop will also end. The incumbent suffragan bishop could stand for election as the bishop of the new diocese.

This was neither an error nor an oversight on the part of APCI; only common sense.

To reactivate the diocese of Cariboo would be a slap in the face to our First Nations brothers and sisters; indeed, a slap in the face to all the people of APCI.

Forming a new diocese with a new beginning and a new name will lead to a fresh start for all of us.

We have started our journey towards reforming as a diocese. Let us proceed with the election of Rev. Barbara Andrews as our suffragan bishop.

Michael L. Webber

Kamloops, B.C.

Rebuilding St. Jude’s

Dear editor,

I want to express my thanks to the Journal for the article on the need of funds to rebuild St. Jude’s Cathedral in Iqaluit (Construction of new St. Jude’s Cathedral to begin in June, Web site, April 16).

For those of us who have been able to spend time in the Nunavut area over the years we have seen the desperate need our church is experiencing in dealing with the growing pains of the developing North.

Many talk about Canadian sovereignty as others seem to want to lay claim to an area that has been looked after by our Inuit people for thousands of years.

We in the South have our problems with drugs, alcohol and suicide, and so do our northern folk, and the Cathedral of St. Jude’s was a haven for the social programs that gave assistance to those troubled people.

The work of rehabilitation must continue in Iqaluit and the northern settlements.

St. Jude’s Cathedral must be rebuilt as soon as possible.

Garth Hampson

Rethinking intinction

Dear editor,

Pandemic management raises many concerns. We in the church need to provide leadership now, prior to a major event hitting Canada. We have heard the admonition to wash hands, wash hands and wash them again.

What do we do in the eucharist? Prior to the most significant portion of the service we encourage people to greet one another passing the peace and shaking hands. Dirty hands for the most part covered in residue from coughing, sneezing and not washing hands on leaving a bathroom. Then, on top of all that, at the same time, many receiving the sacred elements partake of the non-Anglican practice of intinction, dipping the host in the consecrated wine. I am repulsed by the number of people whose dirty fingers, too, are dipped into the wine.

Every bishop in Canada should issue forthwith a pastoral letter ceasing hand shaking during the passing of the peace and ceasing the practice of intinction.

Your health, my health is precious. Two simple changes will assist to keep us healthy.

Allan Higgs

Empowering youth

Dear editor,

I am a full time youth minister for the Catholic church in Prince Edward Island. I was hired to bring youth ministry to two of the city parishes in Charlottetown.

Someone this past week dropped off the editorial by Keith Knight (Vibrant youth ministry essential for today’s church, March Journal).

It was very interesting and very similar to our own challenges we face here in the diocese of Charlottetown. What is interesting are the common factors we both face with our youth. The youth that I have the privilege of working with are very much alive in their faith journey.

We, as adults in the community, need to accept them as full members in Christ’s community and help empower them for leadership. Without their gifts, the church cannot be the full sign of Christ in the community.

Brenda Young

Too graphic

Dear editor,

I was concerned to see the article, How I lost my arms, on the front page of your (May) paper. It is certainly important to bring such atrocities to the consciousness of adult readers of the Journal. However, I do not think the subject matter is appropriate for children, especially with the graphic descriptions of violence.

In its front and centre position in the paper, it is readily accessible to elementary school-aged children. In the future, please consider your young readers in deciding the positioning of articles in the Journal.

Erica Roberts
North Vancouver

A secure pension

Dear editor,

Rod MacHale of Elliot Lake (May letters) may feel that retired Bishop Ron Ferris is to be congratulated for “standing by his convictions” in jumping to the Anglican Network in Canada, but I cannot agree with him.

Call me a cynic, but I would have more respect for Bishop Ferris had he made the move before his retirement. Like his colleagues, Don Harvey and Malcolm Harding (retired bishops of the diocese of Eastern Newfoundland and Labrador and the diocese of Brandon respectively), Bishop Ferris waited until his retirement (with a secure pension) before jumping ship.

Had any of the three former bishops truly the courage of their convictions they would have resigned their bishoprics prior to their retirement. I find nothing laudatory in such self-serving actions.Rene JamiesonWinnipeg

Survivors’ society

Dear editor,

I was disappointed to read in the Journal (April 2009) that there is a National Residential Schools Survivors Society. Using the word “survivors” is an insult to the former staff (a form of elder abuse!) and, secondly, former students have been compensated so there is no need to have such a society any more.

Having a Truth and Reconciliation Commission and hiring private investigators to hunt down all former staff (another form of elder abuse!) is overkill. There was a reason why students attended the residential schools and they were treated well and loved by the staff.

I would hope that anyone concerned about the schools would read my research, The Teaching Wigwams and Harry Miller’s book The Spirit Lives On. They tell the true story of the residential schools. the former bishop of Qu’Appelle, Eric Bays, will also soon have some information published.

Bernice Logan
Tangier, N.S.

Easter ignored

Dear editor,

Although Easter is the oldest and greatest of all the feasts celebrated by the Christian Church, it appears to be of little interest or importance to the Journal. The April edition is typical of March, April and May editions of recent years in the omission of due recognition to what is supposed to be the defining event of the Christian year.

It is doubtful, however, whether there will be any change in the yearly omission of Easter from the pages of the Journal.

The Journal’s priorities are clearly set down on the front page of the April edition in such headlines as “CoGS gets funds for May meeting.”

Amusingly, perhaps, the front page of the April edition has a sub-headline which reads “Vital Church Planting Conference: It is time to do something about empty pews.” Abandonment of central issues of faith, however, won’t do much to fill them! Why should anyone choose to associate with a national church, which gives so little thought to what is supposed to be its core doctrine? If Easter is of such little importance at the Journal, why would anyone bother to be a member of an Anglican Church of Canada which chooses to define itself through its own media by such increasingly depressing manifestations of national apostasy?

Faith deserves to be celebrated, not ignored.

K.Corey Keeble

A full bishop

Dear editor,

In the article on the Anglican Parishes in the Central Interior episcopal election (May Journal), you state that “it cannot elect a bishop outright” because the bishop would be suffragan to the metropolitan. However, the bishop would be a full bishop (there not being half-bishops), but would not be a diocesan bishop. This could usefully be re-stated.

David Jones


Dear editor,

Re Suffragan Bishop Election Deferred (May Journal).

I was a little confused by this article because I thought these people had already had elected a bishop. Reading the article again, I gathered it hadn’t been done right. The provincial house of bishops had “concerns.” Maybe they should have expressed these concerns before the first election.

Being a bishop isn’t easy these days. Maybe a DD (Doctor of Dithering, that is) should be required of future applicants aspiring to be bishop. My heart goes out to all the people in the Cariboo who are again suffering through a difficult time.

John Mansbridge
Castlegar, B.C.


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