Sower in trouble
Funding cuts could shut down the diocese of Calgary’s newspaper, according to a story in The Sower. The diocese is facing massive legal, administrative and potential settlement costs, because of residential school lawsuits, noted editor Bill Hart. The paper’s diocesan grant for 2001 was cut to zero, he said. Although the paper gets a portion of the annual appeal money from the Anglican Journal, it still needs a further $20,000 to $22,000 to break even financially, Mr. Hart said. The Sower’s printing contract, with a cheaper three-year rate, could be in jeopardy because of funding problems.
Morale among priests in the diocese of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island is low, because clergy are dispirited over the future of the Anglican church and their role in it. Archdeacon Rod Gillis, who supervises the pastoral needs of the clergy in the ten parishes in the Chebucto region around Halifax, said demands on priests’ time are going up and resources are declining. Among the top complaints are workload and fundraising. He noted that while the church’s place in society is changing, parishioners and clergy are stuck in traditional expectations, which are debilitating for priests. A key cause of stress is tendency of congregations to place their priests on pedestals, he added. Fewer priests were wearing their collars on the streets these days because they feared being identified with a group of people associated with sex scandals, Archdeacon Gillis added. Until recently, the diocese was the largest user of long-term disability insurance in the national church.
The Diocesan Times
For the sixth year in a row on the last Sunday in February, black Anglicans celebrated their heritage with their own style of worship in a three-hour service at St. Paul’s Bloor Street Church. The service included African and Caribbean music, dancing, clapping and swaying to the beat of gospel songs. Rev. Stephen Fields, rector of St. Stephen the Martyr, Downsview, Ont. preached a sermon on racism experienced within the Anglican church by Anglican immigrants from the Caribbean during the 1950s and 1960s. Mr. Fields also said many people raised issues of racism and exclusion in the church, and that change is taking place. He said that black Anglicans should be more assertive and tell their experiences to church leaders and to those content only with their own personal success.
Solutions to the world’s ecological crisis lie in resolving the spiritual crisis, according to the keynote speaker at the annual Anglican Church Women’s open general meeting at St. Mark’s Church, Ottawa. Elizabeth May, executive director of the Sierra Club of Canada, said the damage we do to our planet is inherently immoral, and we have ditched our obligation to others. Ms. May said possible cataclysmic climate change is the greatest crisis people have ever faced, and there is no future when people set their eyes on greed. Even if climate change is reversed, she noted, wealthy countries continue to create problems borne disproportionately by the poorest countries. This will burden generations to come, she said.
Bells donate bell
With the addition of a new E flat bell, the historic church of St. George’s, St. Catharines, Ont. has a carillon. It was donated in memory of Dr. Kenneth and Patricia Bell. Ken Marks, a church volunteer, said the addition of the new bell, made in the Netherlands, brings the total to 23, the magic number for a carillon. The bell is about 60 centimeters in diameter and weighs almost 160 kilograms. The new bell uses a solenoid, a type of electrical switch, instead of a motor.