Selection idea loses
A proposal to consider a new method for determining the number of delegates a diocese may send to General Synod was defeated. Representation is currently based on the number of licensed clergy in a diocese. Each diocese is entitled to at least one member of the clergy and one layperson but there is no maximum. The system has led to complaints that the Ecclesiastical Province of Canada, which has a high percentage of Anglicans in the population, is under-represented at General Synod with 26 delegates, especially compared with Rupert’s Land which has a small proportion of Anglicans but sends 36 delegates.
Year 2000 warning
The year 2000 computer problem could create difficulties for churches just as it may for other organizations, General Synod was warned. Rev. Michael Iveson of the finance committee urged members to tell parishes and dioceses to ensure any equipment that is computer-dependent – telephones for example – is compatible with the year 2000.
Orders are official
Religious orders now have an official place at General Synod. A revision to the constitution will allow for the appointment of two representatives of religious orders with communities in Canada. The appointments are to be made by the superiors of the orders.
Evangelical Fellowship of Canada will be approached by the Faith, Worship and Ministry Committee “with a view to establishing ecumenical dialogue and partner relationships.” The fellowship is a network of evangelical churches, most of which are not members of the Canadian Council of Churches. The motion also asks that consideration be given to inviting the fellowship to send a partner to the next General Synod.
Army wants reps
A resolution adopted by synod calls for Council of General Synod to consider whether the Church Army in Canada should have representatives in synod. Church Army is a society of lay evangelists whose officers serve in many Canadian dioceses.
Rendina Hamilton was the prolocutor at synod this year. Next to the president, the prolocutor is the most senior officer at synod.
The finance committee will study the feasibility of a national insurance program for the church. The idea is that dioceses could join the plan which would cover church property, liability, and third party liability.
Thanks for service
John and Pamela McBeth of Montreal were honoured with a resolution of thanks for many years of faithful service. Mrs. McBeth, a holder of the Anglican Award of Merit, at various times served as chair of World Mission and as a member of National Executive Council and the Council of General Synod.