New Westminster replaces priests who resigned

By on March 1, 2005

The diocesan council of New Westminster has approved the appointments of new wardens and priests-in-charge at two parishes whose rectors have left the Anglican Church of Canada after disagreeing with a diocesan decision in 2002 to authorize same-sex blessings.

The appointments to St. Simon’s in Deep Cove, North Vancouver, and St. Andrew’s, Pender Harbour were made by Bishop Michael Ingham as a step towards re-establishing ministry in that part of North Vancouver, said diocesan spokesperson Neale Adams.

Rev. Ed Hird, former rector of St. Simon’s, and Rev. Barclay Mayo, former rector of St. Andrew’s – who have since joined a group called the Anglican Communion in Canada (ACiC) – called the move “a harassment,” and said it was done when they were both attending an Anglican Mission in America conference in South Carolina. They maintained that they own the parish properties and that the parishes are now under the jurisdiction of Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini, of the province of Rwanda.

Mr. Adams said, however, that the parishes “are still part of the diocese of New Westminster and they are there to provide ministry for the Anglican Church of Canada.” He said that canon (church) law allowed the bishop to appoint Rev. Sarah Tweedale, rector of St. Clement’s, to take charge of St. Simon’s, and Rev. Mark Lemon, rector of St. Hilda’s in Sechelt, to be priest-in-charge of St. Andrew’s.

Ms. Tweedale’s parish opposes same-sex blessings but has remained with the diocese. In an interview, Ms. Tweedale said her new appointment does not involve her physically going to St. Simon’s because Mr. Hird is still in the parish property with members of the congregation that have followed him out of the diocese. St. Simon’s and St. Andrew’s, she said, remain “as geographical entities, and as people, some of whom no doubt want to remain with the Anglican Church of Canada.”

Bishop Ingham also announced that he was adopting the diocesan council recommendation to dissolve Emmanuel Church in Richmond, B.C., whose priest, Rev. Silas Ng, also left and joined Mr. Hird and Mr. Mayo. The parish worshipped in rented space.

Author

  • Marites N. Sison

    Marites (Tess) Sison was editor of the Anglican Journal from August 2014 to July 2018, and senior staff writer from December 2003 to July 2014. An award-winning journalist, she has more that three decades of professional journalism experience in Canada and overseas. She has contributed to The Toronto Star and CBC Radio, and worked as a stringer for The New York Times.

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