Letters to the editor, March 2019

Published March 1, 2019

Letters are subject to editing.

‘Shine the light of Christ into the darkness’

I agree with the primate (Hiltz: Church needs to know its purpose, Jan. 2018, p. 8) that in the church’s deliberation over changing its marriage canon, St. Paul might remind us of his counsel to the Ephesians to be “humble and gentle and patient with one another, bearing with one another in love, making every effort to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Eph. 4:2-3).

I would hope these qualities would be on display during our discussions of this and all other serious matters.

I don’t believe Paul’s counsel would stop there, however. Several verses later in the very same chapter, Paul writes, “Now this I affirm and insist on in the Lord: you must no longer live as the nations live” (Eph. 4:17). These words of Paul should give us pause in our headlong rush to change the marriage canon, for they remind us both about who we are and what we are to be about. In Christ, we are members of God’s new people who are to show to the nations of the world a new way of being human. We are to shine the light of Christ into the darkness, not reflect the signs and symptoms of a disordered creation back upon itself.

The Rev. Ross Gill
Kitchener, Ont.

Let’s show some respect

I read with interest the article Hiltz: Church needs to know its purpose (Jan. 2018, p. 8).
In it, our primate refers to correspondence he receives that is “nasty, rude and quite hateful.” What is wrong with us? As people trying to live as Jesus lived, why are we criticizing anyone, let alone our leader? This breaks my heart.

Our amazing primate goes on to say that all forms of feedback can be seen as useful. Talk about turning the other cheek and living your life as a Christian. Please, can we agree to disagree, and share our many opinions in a respectful manner? It’s not that hard to do.

Joy Adams Bauer
Nanaimo, B.C.

‘Relieved’ by decisions

The past two or three issues of the Anglican Journal have contained articles about our diocese (Caledonia accepts ruling, Sept. 2017, p. 1; Retired bishop leaves church and Caledonia fires priest ‘without cause,’ Jan. 2018, p. 1).

Lest your readers be left with the impression that everyone in the diocese is shocked and dismayed by the decision of the provincial House of Bishops not to confirm the (then) Bishop-elect Jacob Worley, and subsequently to terminate his position as a parish priest, we are two members of St. Mark’s in the Parish of the South Peace who were relieved by those decisions. We were not surprised either when our former bishop, William Anderson, severed his ties with the Anglican Church of Canada and took up membership in the Anglican Network in Canada (ANiC).

Jacquie Kotak and Anne Clayton
Dawson Creek, B.C.

Can you call yourself a mature Anglican Christian?

I peruse the Anglican Journal with interest. I am coming to the conclusion from reading its articles, and from what I observe from being a member of the Anglican church, that I am not mature enough to be an Anglican.

Its three-legged-stool ethos of Bible, Tradition and Reason, and keeping them in balance, demands intellectual acumen and maturity. Joseph, Nicodemus, Barnabas, Fred Hiltz and some of the characters in the parables of Jesus show maturity. Simon Peter, the rich young man and the Pharisees as portrayed in the gospels, in whose number I include myself, do not show maturity. In my estimation, Paul had a roller-coaster personality ranging from intellectual acumen and maturity to psychological immaturity.

I ask myself the question: How much maturity is required to be an Anglican Christian?
“Amazing Grace”—It is with gratitude that I know we are accepted by God through Jesus Christ just as I am/we are.

John Serjeantson
Cowansville, Que.

Augustine, not Henry

Your (former) writer André Forget describes King Henry VIII as “famous for being the first head of the Anglican church” (Luther and the English church: 500 years of influence, Oct. 2017, p. 7), but the Anglican church began over 900 years earlier. The best candidate for being considered its first head is the first Archbishop of Canterbury, St. Augustine.

Alan Hayes

Quebec Bill 62

For the life of me, I do not understand why Quebec Bill 62, banning the wearing of the niqab, was a topic of debate by Anglican bishops (Bishops decry Bill 62, Dec. 2017, p. 1.)

Eighty-seven per cent of the Quebec population agree with this bill, according to an Angus Reid survey conducted October 4. From your own figures, 100 women are involved in this practice out of a population of eight million.

Having lived in Morocco, which is a Muslim majority country, this is to be expected. But sitting in a park in Canada, with a woman whose face is fully covered, makes me feel uncomfortable.

Please, there must be other more important issues for the bishops to ponder.

Graham Wright
Victoria Beach, N.S.


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