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Dear saints of the church in Algoma and Moosonee,
Greetings to you from Mount Carmel in Niagara Falls where the National House of Bishops is wrapping up its fall meeting.
This has been a full week with intense and rich conversations and discussions about The Lambeth Conference, and the ongoing work of the self-determining indigenous church.
We were privileged to be part of some excellent presentations on becoming a safer church by Mandy Marshall who serves as the Anglican Communion’s Director for Gender Justice.
Today Mandy is heading to the national gathering of PWRDF and next week will be offering leadership in three seminars on Becoming a Safer Church. Information about those online seminars is posted on the diocesan website. Space is limited and registration is necessary.
I hope there will be some people from Algoma and Moosonee in attendance at these seminars. This is important as we continue to make our dioceses safer.
During Mandy’s presentations we learned about trauma which are described as those invisible injuries which have a devastating impact on the lives of God’s beloved when they are hurt. We also learned about the principles of trauma informed care which is respectful, consistent, trustworthy and transparent and some of the possible pathways to healing and wholeness. It is a difficult subject, but one which is important to engage with and learn more about in this time of deep hurt, conflict, and ongoing revelations of abuse.
Alan Perry, the General Secretary of the Anglican Church in Canada spoke to us about General Synod 2023 which will take place at Calgary University from June 27th to July 2nd next year. This is a joint Assembly with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada so it will be a wonderfully large group meeting. One of the items for our joint consideration is whether we will enter into a full communion partnership with the Moravian Church in Canada.
One of the reasons for this letter is to call us to prayer as the indigenous church in Canada enters a new phase in the process of the appointment of a new Anglican Indigenous Archbishop for our church.
This weekend the selection committee appointed by the Anglican Council of Indigenous People will be interviewing 8 candidates who are letting their names stand to be the new National Anglican Indigenous Archbishop for our church. There are five bishops and three clergy being interviewed.
Following the selection of the candidate by the committee, that individual will be presented to ACIP and then to the Primate who makes the appointment.
As you are aware, following the resignation from the position of National Anglican Indigenous Archbishop in the spring of Mark MacDonald, Bishop Sydney Black has served as the interim Indigenous Bishop. We give thanks for his faithful leading and servant’s heart.
Please pray for all who are involved in this weekend’s interviews by using this prayer if it is a helpful resource.
Creator God, source of all hope and Shepherd of our souls;
In every age you have raised up servant leadership to pastor and guide your people.
In your loving mercy and kindness give to our church in its National Indigenous Archbishop a shepherd after your own heart; a person of vision and a teacher of truth who will walk in your ways, and in your loving care watch over your people.
Bless with the Spirit’s grace and presence those who will choose our National Indigenous Archbishop. Give them the necessary gifts of wisdom, knowledge and discernment in the work ahead and keep them steadfast in faith and united in hope.
Look with kindness and gentleness upon those who are discerning a new call to ministry in Christ’s name. Give them a sure trust in your wisdom and love, humility of heart and will as they surrender to your call.
This we pray in the Spirit’s power and in the strong name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, Creator Sets Free. Amen
With every blessing, I remain yours in Christ,