Prayer society appoints new director

"Prayer lies at the heart of our lives as Christians," says Archdeacon Paul Feheley, newly appointed national director of the Anglican Fellowship of Prayer Canada. Photo: Leigh Anne Williams
"Prayer lies at the heart of our lives as Christians," says Archdeacon Paul Feheley, newly appointed national director of the Anglican Fellowship of Prayer Canada. Photo: Leigh Anne Williams
By on June 17, 2014

Archdeacon PaulFeheley has been named the new national director of the Anglican Fellowship of Prayer Canada (AFP-C).

Feheley, who is just finishing his term as interim editor of the Anglican Journal, will continue his work as the principal secretary to Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, and priest-in-charge at St. Chad’s Anglican Church, Toronto.

“I am deeply honoured and humbled to be asked to take on such an important and significant ministry and to work with the executive and diocesan and parish representatives across the country,” Feheley commented in an AFP-C announcement of his appointment.

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The Rev.Valerie Kenyon, chair of AFP-C’s executive, told the Journal that Feheley’s acceptance of the position was “received with deep gratitude and enthusiasm. Archdeacon Feheley brings with him both a breadth of experience and a profound commitment to prayer and to the basic mission of the Anglican Fellowship of Prayer to promote the practice of Christian prayer by all and to encourage and enable the ministry of prayer in Canada.” She added that AFP-C’s ministry is “inclusive of all forms of expressions of Christian church life, seeking also to be a teaching resource to assist both individuals and congregations to grow in the life of prayer.”

Feheley succeeds the late Bishop Gary Woolsey, who was national director from 2007 until his resignation in 2013.

“Prayer lies at the heart of our lives as Christians, and I believe that AFP can enliven and continue to develop and build on the work of previous leaders such as Gary Woolsey and Tom and Betty Gracie,” Feheley added. “It is a unique gift that we have, both to enable us to share who we are with God and to help others to find and build a relationship with Jesus.”

Feheley hasbeen involved with the work of the AFP over the years. He has participated in and led workshops in both the dioceses of Toronto and Huron, and his workshop on the Prayers of the People called “Touching the Heart: Prayer in parishes” was turned into a six-part DVD series.

He mentioned that the writing of Henri Nouwen has been important to his own spiritual development and that he finds the following quote deeply meaningful:

“To pray, I think, does not mean to think about God in contrast to thinking about other things, or to spend time with God instead of spending time with other people. Rather, it means to think and live in the presence of God.”

Feheley received his master of divinity degree from Toronto’s Trinity College in 1978 and was ordained in 1979. He has served as incumbent at St. George’s Memorial Church in Oshawa, St. Martin’s Anglican Church (Bay Ridges), The Church of the Epiphany and St. Mark (Parkdale), the Parish of Caledon East, and as the assistant curate at St. Clement’s Toronto. He was principal secretary to then primate, Archbishop Andrew Hutchison, from 2004 to 2007. He has also worked in communications for the Anglican Communion at the Lambeth Conference of Bishops, the Primates’ Meetings and the Anglican Consultative Council.

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