Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

The Mythic Dimension

Posted on: April 28th, 2017 by CEP Administrator No Comments
Books, Reviews

THE MYTHIC DIMENSION
Selected Essays 1959-1987
by Joseph Campbell

Collected Works
New World Library, 2017
Hardcover. 348 pages. $18.35CAD
Paperback. 348 pages. $24.26CAD
ISBN#978-1-57731-594-0

(second paperback edition just released, March, 2017)

 

Publisher’s Promo:

These 12 eclectic essays explore myth and its fascinating context
in the human imagination – in the arts, literature, and culture, as
well as in everyday life.

The most recent title in New World Library’s Collected Works of
Joseph Campbell 11-volume series, this new paperback edition
features pieces that exhibit Campbell’s trademark thoughtfulness
and intelligence. These essays explore the topic for which Campbell

was best known: the many connections between myth and history,

psychology, and the daily world. Drawing from such varied sources
as Thomas Mann, the occult, Jungian and Freudian theory, and the
Grateful Dead, these dynamic writings elucidate the many ways in
which myth touches our lives, our psyches, and our relationship to
the world.

This second volume of Campbell’s essays (followingThe Flight of the
Wild Gander) brings together his uncollected writings from 1959 to 1987.

Written at the height of Campbell’s career – and showcasing
the lively intelligence that made him the twentieth century’s premier
writer on mythology – these essays investigate the profound links
between myth, the individual, and societies ancient and contemporary.

 

Endorsements

“Campbell has become one of the rarest of intellectuals in American

life: a serious thinker who has been embraced by the popular culture.”
Newsweek
“No one in our century—not Freud, not Thomas Mann, not Lévi-Strauss—has so brought the mythical sense of the world and its eternal figures back into our everyday consciousness.”
— James Hillman

 

“In our generation the mythographer who has had the fullest command of the huge scholarly literature, the analytic ability, the lucid prose, and the needed staying power has been Joseph Campbell.”
Commentary

Joseph Campbell’s Words:

 

“Accordingly the vision and the visionary, though apparently separate, are one; and all the heavens, all the hells, all the gods and demons, all the figures of the mythic worlds, are within us as portions of ourselves – portions, that is to say, that are of our deepest, primary nature, and thus of our share in nature. They are out there as well as in here, yet, in this field of consciousness, without separation. Our personal dreams are our personal guides, therefore, to the ranges of myth and of the gods. Dreams are our personal myths; myths, the general dream.”


—  from The Mythic Dimension

 

Joseph Campbell Bio:

John Campbell (1904-1987) wrote, among other works, the classics The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Inner Reaches of Outer Space, and The Masks of God. A prolific writer, lecturer, and scholar of art, history, religion, and culture, he taught at Sarah Lawrence College.

(extensive Wikipedia bio): http://tinyurl.com/l9krkbu

 

Editor’s Words:

From 1959 until his death in 1987, Joseph Campbell wrote three
major works – “The Masks of God” “The Historical Atlas of World
Mythology” and “The Mythic Image”. These books were not just
books about mythology; they were books about all mythology,
or large-scale attempts to comprehend the religious expression
of the human species.

In them, Campbell introduced many facts, stories, images, and
ideas to serve his larger argument, only to let them go after they
had served their purpose… During these most productive years
of his career, however, Campbell did write about much of the
material that he only touched on in his major works. He lectured
prodigiously and wrote numerous essays that were either early
explorations or of mature reflections upon material that appeared
in his larger ventures. These essays were published in small-
circulation magazines and journals, or in introductions to chapters
in others’ books. The best of them are collected (in this book.)

(Campbell writes about the historical development of mythology
and the mythological themes dating from early times that inform
our lives today. This book contains many of those foundational
essays linking his major themes to inform us of how myth addresses
the universal concerns of human consciousness)…

(These essays help to tie together the themes of his major works,
as he wrote during the height of his powers and then during the
period of his life when he sought to integrate and emphasise the
key learnings of his unusual career.)

 

Review by Dr. Wayne Holst

My Thoughts:

Joseph Campbell was a prolific and profound writer who was
always venturing into new subjects, then integrating what he
discovered into his earlier understandings.

This book is a reflection on the integrational aspect of his teaching,
and continues to stand out as new generations become aware
of his significant contribution to human understandings.

A review of the thematic contents page of this book reminds us
of the breadth of his learning and the way he continued to weave
new discoveries with older understandings.

In the first part of this book he writes of the expanding nature of

comparative mythology across global cultures; the historical development

of mythology, rituals that emerge from myths; and the goddess theme in myths.

In the second part of this book, he writes of mythology and the
arts – and of how myths are communicated verbally and symbolically.
His ability to understand this theme through creative literature
and art can help us to understand how myth is so much part
of the world of the arts in every era. He not only deals with myths
of the past, in other words, but with how myths continue to
be reconstituted in every era of human history, including our own.

The book contains an excellent index of themes appearing here,
and an extensive list of his writings.

The new paperback edition, just published, is an indication of
the timeliness and continuing appeal of Joseph Campbell for
new readers as well as veterans returning for another drink
from the well of one of the twentieth century’s great minds.

 

Buy the book from Amazon.ca:
http://tinyurl.com/n7crlhk


Buy the book from New World Library:
http://tinyurl.com/k8uaun6
Dr. Wayne Holst teaches religion and culture at the University of Calgary and  helps  to co-ordinate Adult Spiritual Development  at St. David’s United Church in that city. ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Colleagues List, Vol. XII. No. 30, April 30, 2017

The Souls Of China

Posted on: April 28th, 2017 by CEP Administrator No Comments
Books, Reviews

THE SOULS OF CHINA
The Return of Religion After Mao
by Ian Johnson

Random House Canada Pantheon
Publication date: April 11th, 2017
455 pages. Hardcover. $30.00 CAD.
ISBN #978-1-101-87005-2

 

 

Publisher’s Promo:

From the Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist, a revelatory portrait of religion in China today—its history, the spiritual traditions of its Eastern and Western faiths, and the ways in which it is influencing China’s future.

The Souls of China tells the story of one of the world’s great spiritual revivals.  Following a century of violent anti-religious campaigns, China is now filled with new temples, churches, and mosques – as well as cults, sects, and politicians trying to harness religion for their own ends. Driving this explosion of faith is uncertainty—over what it means to be Chinese and how to live an ethical life in a country that discarded traditional morality a century ago and is searching for new guideposts.

Ian Johnson first visited China in 1984; in the 1990s he helped run a charity to rebuild Daoist temples, and in 2001 he won a Pulitzer Prize for his coverage of the suppression of the Falun Gong spiritual movement.

While researching this book, he lived for extended periods with underground church members, rural Daoists, and Buddhist pilgrims. Along the way, he learned esoteric meditation techniques, visited a nonagenarian Confucian sage, and befriended government propagandists as they fashioned a remarkable embrace of traditional values. He has distilled these experiences into a cycle of festivals, births, deaths, detentions, and struggle—a great awakening of faith  that is shaping the soul of the world’s newest superpower.

 

Author’s Words:

In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Chinese patriots … worried that their country was so backward that it would be torn  apart by foreign powers… Those who sought reform of China’s traditional culture, especially its systems of belief, (targeted) superstitious relics that dulled people to the potential of science and progress…

Out of these struggles for a new identity, based on the best of the past but also open to the future… is coming something more than the hyper-merchantilist, fragile superpower that we (currently) know. It is a country engaging in a global conversation that affects all of us: how to restore solidarity and values that have made economics the basis of most decisions. Perhaps because Chinese traditions were so savagely attacked over the past decades, and then replaced with such a naked form of capitalism, China might actually be at the forefront of this worldwide search for values.

These are universal aspirations, and like people elsewhere in the world, Chinese people feel that these hopes are supported by something more than a particular government or law. They are supported by heaven.

– from the introduction to “The Moon Year” and the Afterword

 

Author’s Bio:

Ian Johnson is a regular contributor to The New York Review of Books and The New York Times, and his work has also appeared in  The New Yorker and National Geographic. He is an advising editor for the Journal of Asian Studies, and teaches a course on religion in Beijing. He is the author of two other books that also focus on the intersection of politics and religion: Wild Grass: Three Stories of Change in China, and A Mosque in Munich: Nazis, the CIA, and the Rise of the Muslim Brotherhood in the West. He lives in Beijing.

Christianity Today Interview of the Author (short):
http://tinyurl.com/lob6ds8

Review by Dr. Wayne Holst

My Thoughts:

Like many  foreign observers of Chinese society today, I am both intrigued and baffled by what is going on there. The miracle of religious revival or of the growth of new faiths like Christianity, is simply amazing. At the same time, solid predictions are hard to come by and it is difficult to describe the future of that great nation. One thing is certain, what happens in China will have global ramifications.

I have tended to approach the subject of China’s souls from a religious perspective. But much of what lies at the heart of China’s people are spiritual traditions quite different from what we have experienced in the west. Why, for example, is there so much animus to the nation and spirituality of the little country of Tibet? Why the bitter resentment to such internal Chinese movements like Falun Gong?  

What is similar in all this are the common hopes and aspirations that influence and affect all humans.
 
We in the west are only beginning to scratch the surface of what is actually taking place in China today. People like me have been approaching the subject from a very limited perspective – such as more recent historical encounters through the prism of colonialism and modern missionary Christianity.

What we need right now are venturesome scouts and interpreters like Ian Johnson, who can provide a bigger picture and deeper awareness.

Thank God we are no longer dealing with the fears and biases that early guides like the Canadian Chester Ronning had to face fifty years ago! We now stand at a stage of serious human-to-human encounter that could not have happened before the era of the cold war or the ubiquitous, global presence of Chinese tourists!

Many more of us need to be reversing current behaviour and making China one of our personal travel goals. I have a number of friends who have done just that. Perhaps there is still time for me too!

“The Souls of China – The Return of Religion After Mao” is a book that will require attentiveness and concentration – as well as conversations with those Asian friends who may be in as much need for enlightenment about the real China today as non-Chinese might be.

There is much more to this book than a rich resource on the miraculous growth of Christianity in China. But that story is also present here as marvelous testimony to the role of religion in modern societies.

This book is one with shelf-life and would be well worth the investment – either now, or during the next few years – for those who take the future of our world, its people and spirituality seriously.

Buy the book from Amazon.ca:
http://tinyurl.com/l6pqr6x

 

Dr. Wayne Holst teaches religion and culture at the University of Calgary and  helps  to co-ordinate Adult Spiritual Development  at St. David’s United Church in that city. ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Colleagues List, Vol. XII. No. 27, April 9, 2017

 

 

Bishops discuss ‘dual citizenship’ for Indigenous Anglicans

Posted on: April 28th, 2017 by CEP Administrator No Comments
General, Reviews

 

By Tali Folkins on April, 28 2017

Women bishops at the spring meeting of the House of Bishops (L to R): Anne Germond, Melissa Skelton, Linda Nicholls, Riscylla Walsh Shaw, Barbara Andrews, Mary Irwin-Gibson and (seated) Jenny Andison.  Newly-elected bishops Germond, Shaw and Andison attended the meeting for the first time. Other women bishops not in the photo are Bishops Jane Alexander and Lydia Mamakwa. Photo: Courtesy of Bishop Melissa Skelton


A focus group tasked with working out the details of what a self-determining Indigenous church will look like is considering a model in which Indigenous Anglicans will belong to both their local dioceses and the Indigenous church at the same time.

“We’re really talking about congregations having a sense of dual belonging in the Indigenous church and in their own dioceses,” National Indigenous Anglican Bishop Mark MacDonald said in an interview with the Anglican Journal. MacDonald, along with three other bishops, gave a presentation on recent work of the task force at the spring meeting of the Anglican Church of Canada’s House of Bishops in Niagara Falls, Ont., April 24-28.

While many Indigenous Anglicans have been calling for a “self-determining” Indigenous church for decades, some significant steps have been made in the past few years in particular. In 2015, the eighth National Anglican Sacred Circle, a national gathering of Indigenous Anglicans, said it favoured the idea of a fifth Anglican province, this one fully Indigenous, to add to the four ecclesiastical provinces that currently make up the Anglican Church of Canada.

Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, said the presentation gave him a sense that among Canadian Indigenous Anglicans, “there is much less focus now on the idea of a fifth province,” with instead the idea of a grouping that would be something like an “overlay” on the current four-province structure.

Hiltz mused whether this model, a work in progress though it is, might be the sign of a coming “new covenant” between the Anglican Church of Canada and its Indigenous members, one with the goal not only of creating an Indigenous church but also of involving and transforming the entire national church.

The idea of what shape an Indigenous church might have was also discussed at General Synod last summer. Since then, MacDonald said, its possible shape has become a little clearer. Many Indigenous Anglican leaders are using the word “confederacy” to describe the future Indigenous church, both because it is familiar to many Canadian Indigenous people and because it carries the idea of “voluntary involvement retaining a sense of the local identity,” MacDonald said.

The focus group, MacDonald said, hopes to start its “dual belonging” model with a small number of Indigenous congregations initially, as a sort of pilot project.

The model is still only a draft, MacDonald said, and has yet to be discussed by the Anglican Council of Indigenous Peoples (ACIP) at its meeting in June and at a national consultation on Indigenous self-determination planned  for this September. It must ultimately be approved by Sacred Circle, which meets next in 2018.

Another highlight of the House of Bishops meeting, Hiltz said, was a series of presentations by David Pfrimmer, a professor of public ethics at Waterloo Lutheran Seminary. (For the first evening and full day of the meeting, the House of Bishops met jointly with the Conference of Bishops of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada.) The presentations dealt with topics such as the Brexit referendum in the U.K., the election of Donald Trump in the U.S. and the evolving role of religion in Canadian society.  Pfrimmer, Hiltz said, talked about how Canadian Christians should draw upon their past experience of “public ecumenism”—joining forces with each other on ethical and political issues—to engage now with the many Canadians of other religions.

Pfrimmer underscored that “the Canada that we celebrated at 150 years old is a very different Canada than we were celebrating at 100 years old,” said Hiltz. “We’re actually a much more multi-cultural, multi-racial, multi-faith kind of country.”

John Chapman, bishop of the diocese of Ottawa, said he agreed with Pfrimmer. “We have voluntarily silenced our voice in the public square, it seems to me, in the last 30-40 years,” he said. “All religious voices should be heard in the formation of public policy, and we need to reclaim that place that we once had.”

These presentations, Hiltz said, were “an opportunity to lift up our heads and look out to the world and to talk about the public, as David [Pfrimmer] put it, that we are called to serve.”

Hiltz said he also saw, at the House of Bishops meeting, “signs of new life” in the form of new engagement in many dioceses with a wider range of issues: refugees, the environment, poverty and Indigenous/non-Indigenous relations.

The bishops also discussed, he said, the need to do a kind of national “check-up” of how dioceses have been responding to a provisional vote by General Synod last summer in favour of allowing same-sex marriages. This check-up, he said, would likely take place at the House of Bishops meeting in spring 2018.

Several bishops praised this spring’s House of Bishops meeting as an especially rewarding opportunity for relationship-building and learning.

“I felt like the quality of the exchanges we had at this House of Bishops was quite remarkable,” said Melissa Skelton, bishop of New Westminster.

Diocese of Huron Bishop Linda Nicholls said she found Pfrimmer’s presentation “certainly challenging.”

Four new bishops attended the meeting for the first time: Diocese of Algoma Bishop Anne Germond and Toronto Suffragan Bishops  Kevin Robertson (York-Scarborough), Riscylla Walsh Shaw (Trent-Durham) and Jenny Andison (York-Credit Valley).

Many also said they were moved by a dinner and service in memory of Terence Finlay, former bishop of Toronto, metropolitan of the ecclesiastical province of Ontario and chaplain at House of Bishops meetings, who died in March at age 79.

“A number of us…throughout the liturgy were in tears, tears of sadness that we’ve lost such a good friend, but tears of joy for the wonderful friendship that we shared with him for so many years,” Hiltz said.

 – With files from André Forget

About the Author

Tali Folkins

Tali Folkins

Tali Folkins has worked as a staff reporter for the Law Times and the New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal.  His writing has appeared in The Globe and Mail and The United Church Observer.

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Anglican Journal News, April 28, 2017

Diocese of Ontario puts $115,000 toward Indigenous projects

Posted on: April 27th, 2017 by CEP Administrator No Comments
General, Reviews

By Tali Folkins on April 25, 2017

L-R: Canon Rod BrantFrancis, Bishop of Ontario Michael Oulton and the Rev. Lisa BrantFrancis after an Easter festival of lessons and carols held April 23 at Christ Church, Tyendinaga, Ont. Photo: Contributed


The diocese of Ontario is planning to put the $115,000 that was returned to it under the Indian Residential School Settlement Agreement to support First Nations-related projects in a variety of ways, including ministry in the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, near Belleville, Ont.

“We want to prioritize that ministry,” Bishop Michael Oulton said in an interview. “I think if we can support that…it becomes a very powerful witness to the wider community.”

Since late 2015, when the national church started returning settlement agreement funds to the dioceses, many of them have announced plans to use the funds for Indigenous ministry. The diocese of Ontario, which covers a triangle of land centred on Kingston, was no exception, deciding that the funds must go entirely toward issues related to First Nations communities and reconciliation, Oulton said. Last October, the diocese donated about 5% of the returned money to an annual arts festival held on the territory. As a result of the diocese’s contribution, organizers were able to expand the festival with a musical portion, including a music-writing competition.

The diocese is also using returned residential school settlement money  to fund ministry in Tyendinaga, the only Indigenous parish in the diocese.

After its incumbent priest departed for the diocese of Toronto in 2015, the parish of Tyendinaga found it could no longer afford full-time ministry. However, with the diocese’s help, the parish was able to hire a married couple to take over. Canon Rod BrantFrancis was named last fall as the new incumbent, and his wife, the Rev. Lisa BrantFrancis, was hired as priest associate.

Between 15 and 20% of the returned funds will be paid to the parish every year for the next several years, says Alex Pierson, the diocese’s interim executive officer.

The hope is that over the next couple of years, Tyendinaga will once again be a financially self-sufficient parish, as it had been for hundreds of years previously, says Rod BrantFrancis.

“We certainly hope to be able to build bridges across the community, and even across the diocese,” he says. “We hope to be able to work in conjunction with other community organizations and really to be agents of reconciliation and healing in the community.”

The diocese is still working out uses for the remaining returned funds. One possible use for the rest of this money, Oulton says, might be to provide help—pastoral support, for example—for Indigenous people coming from northern communities to Kingston for medical services.

The return of the settlement funds is traceable to the federal government’s settlement with the Roman Catholic Church in 2007. As part of this settlement, it was agreed that $2.76 million of the Anglican Church of Canada’s $15.7-million obligation under the agreement would be set aside, pending the results of a seven-year fundraising campaign by the Roman Catholic Church.

By the time the Roman Catholic campaign ended in September 2014, it had raised much less money than originally hoped. As a result, the Anglican national church returned most of the $2.76 million to the dioceses, which had raised it, and gave the portion of the $2.76 million that had been raised by the national church—$325,000—to the Anglican Fund for Healing and Reconciliation.

Tali Folkins

Tali Folkins

Tali Folkins has worked as a staff reporter for the Law Times and the New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal.  His writing has appeared in The Globe and Mail and The United Church Observer.

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Anglican Journal News, April 27, 2017

PWRDF offers aid to Fort McMurray’s recovering residents

Posted on: April 24th, 2017 by CEP Administrator No Comments
General, Reviews

By André Forget on April, 24 2017


Many houses in Fort McMurray damaged by the May 2016 fire are still waiting to be repaired due to difficulties accessing insurance money.
Photo: PWRDF


Almost a year after a wildfire devastated Fort McMurray, Alta., the Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund (PWRDF) says Canadian Anglicans have donated more then $200,000 toward relief, as residents struggle to put their lives back together.

On May 6, 2016, as the fire ripped through the city on its third day, PWRDF announced an initial grant of $15,000 to the diocese of Athabasca, which includes Fort McMurray.

It also began accepting donations for relief efforts for the roughly 80,000 people displaced from the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo. According to news reports, the fire destroyed 2,400 buildings, or around 10% of the city, and could have caused as much as $3.58 billion in damage.

Almost a year later, many residents have returned to Fort McMurray. But while life is “slowly getting back to normal,” according to Tara Munn, outgoing PWRDF liaison and secretary of the Fort McMurray Fire Relief Steering Committee, many are still in limbo.

In an update posted on the PWRDF website, Munn, a Fort McMurray resident who did not lose her home, noted that some homes have been rebuilt, but many families are still renting space or going through the time-consuming process of claiming insurance.

The problem is complicated by extensive flooding that has affected several neighbourhoods in Fort McMurray. The flooding has led to a moratorium on new construction in some parts of the Waterways neighbourhood, which means even residents who received insurance for the loss of their homes may not be able to rebuild on their property.

For some, the challenges of rebuilding a life in Fort McMurray are simply not worth it.

Munn reports that some of the 12 families at All Saints’ Anglican Church (one of Fort McMurray’s two Anglican churches) who lost their homes have opted not to return to a city that was struggling with a slowing economy even before the wildfire.

“The population base has decreased,” Munn said. “Many social agencies [that] were stressed before due to downsizing of the local economy are now dealing with a staff decrease. Businesses are feeling it, too. It’s noticeably quieter.”

Money donated to PWRDF has been used to supplement rent for those waiting for repairs on their homes and apartments to be completed, to purchase teaching materials for local schools and to help cover costs of a conference, held in March, that dealt with how to recover following a traumatic event, according to the PWRDF.

 

About the Author

André Forget

André Forget

André Forget joined the Anglican Journal in 2014 as staff writer and social media lead. He also serves as managing editor of Whether Magazine, and his writing has appeared in The Dalhousie Review, The Winnipeg Review, and the Town Crier.

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Anglican Journal News, April 24, 2017

Iraqi refugee becomes Anglican priest

Posted on: April 24th, 2017 by CEP Administrator No Comments
General, Reviews

By Anglican Journal staff on April, 24 2017
 


New Westminster Bishop Melissa Skelton introduces the Rev. Fr. Ayoob Adwar as a new priest in the Anglican Church of Canada.
Photo: Wayne Chose


Fr. Ayoob Shawkat Adwar, a priest in the Chaldean Catholic Church, was received as an Anglican priest at a ceremony in Surrey, B.C. March 26.

The event was a “small but significant piece of history,” says Archdeacon Stephen Rowe, rector of the Anglican Parish of the Church of the Epiphany in Surrey, since he is thought to be the first Chaldean priest in history to have become a member of the Anglican clergy.

Originally from Mosul, Iraq—heartland of the Chaldean church—Adwar was ordained as a Chaldean priest in 2008. His family began to arrive in Canada about five years ago, and Adwar himself followed in 2014, when he was granted refugee status.

At around the same time, a group of Chaldeans began worshipping at the Church of the Epiphany. In Advent of 2014, Melissa Skelton, bishop of New Westminster, gave her permission for a Chaldean Rite Mass to take place at the church. Over time, Anglicans and Chaldeans at the church started attending each other’s services and learning more about each other’s traditions.

Meanwhile, Adwar had declared an interest in becoming an Anglican priest, and began a discernment process. He was confirmed as an Anglican in December, 2016; that ceremony, like his reception as an Anglican priest, was presided over by Skelton.

Adwar, who is fluent in both Arabic and modern Aramaic—a Middle Eastern language derived from the language of Jesus—will serve as a curate in the diocese of New Westminster, working with an experienced Anglican priest.

This story was based on an article written by Jevon Anonby for the diocese of New Westminster website.

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Anglican Journal News, April 24, 2017

Earth Day message from Anglican and Lutheran leaders

Posted on: April 22nd, 2017 by CEP Administrator No Comments
General, Reviews

Earth Day message from Anglican and Lutheran leaders

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April 19, 2017

Very truly, I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. —John 12:24

In recognition of Earth Day on April 22, 2017, we invite you to join us in praying for the humility and discipline to use Earth’s resources wisely and responsibly.

Through our Lenten Journey to Easter we have been reminded once again that Jesus offered his whole life and death for the love of the world; and the story was completed with his resurrection. As we celebrate this great mystery we recall how he helped us understand death and resurrection using the image of a seed planted and coming out of the earth as a new growth—budding, bursting, blooming, bearing beautiful fruit.

As followers of Christ, we are also challenged to offer our lives for the love of the world. What do we have to offer and to plant? What in us needs to die so that we can bear much fruit? What happens when we touch the earth with faith?

Our churches are committed to responsible stewardship of the earth. As we celebrate Earth Day, we re-commit to our care for creation and commend the efforts of our congregations across the country to live out this call. We recommend that you or your congregation get involved with the Faith Commuter Challenge, a creative way to reduce your carbon footprint and raise awareness of the impact of our actions. Visit greeningsacredspaces.net/what-we-do/commuter-challenge/ to learn more about how you can participate.

On Earth Day let us pray together:

Creator, we give you thanks for the intricate balance of relationships that sustains life. Bless us with the humility and discipline to use Earth’s resources wisely and responsibly.

Crucified and Risen Christ, we give you thanks for forgiveness, life and salvation that is the source of our hope for true community and abundant life. Help us, guide us and transform us so that we may walk in your ways of justice, equity and peace.

Holy Spirit, we give you thanks for fresh winds of renewal, that open our hearts to new possibilities and deeper insights. Grant us courage to act in diverse, creative and generous ways.

Creator, Christ and Spirit One: call us together for the love of the world, and send us to proclaim your gift of hope. Amen.

Yours in the spirit of Full Communion,

The Most Rev. Fred Hiltz
Primate, Anglican Church of Canada

The Rev. Susan C. Johnson
National Bishop, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada

The Rt. Rev. Mark MacDonald
National Anglican Indigenous Bishop, Anglican Church of Canada

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Anglican Church of Canada, News from General Synod, April 19, 2017

Anglican Communion task group developing deeper links and wider understanding

Posted on: April 22nd, 2017 by CEP Administrator No Comments
General, Reviews

By ACNS (Anglican Communion News Service) on April 21, 2017


Task group members (L-R) Canon Rosemary Mbogo, Archbishop Ng Moon Hing, Archbishop Richard Clarke, Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, Bishop Linda Nicholls, Bishop Ian Earnest, Archbishop Josiah Idowu-Fearon and Archbishop Philip Freier.
Photo: ACNS


The Task Group set up by last year’s gathering of primates has been meeting in London this week with the emphasis on understanding diversity within the Anglican Communion – and recognizing the many areas of unity.

The Archbishop of Armagh, Richard Clarke – who chaired the meeting – said it has been a positive and fruitful discussion.

“We have been developing a greater understanding between us of the diversity within the Communion,” he said. “But, significantly, we have been seeing the many, many areas of commonality.

“It has not been a theological discussion. Instead, we have been examining what differences mean at a practical level. In particular, we looked at marriage practices and relationships in different parts of the Communion. But we also looked at the spiritual dimensions of the idea of walking together.”

The secretary general of the Anglican Communion, Archbishop Josiah Idowu-Fearon – who serves the group as secretary – added that it had been considering how the authority of primates and bishops was practiced in different parts of the Communion.

The group was established in January 2016 by the Archbishop of Canterbury at the request of the primates. It was given the task of restoring relationships, rebuilding mutual trust and responsibility, healing the legacy of hurt and exploring deeper relationships. The group met for the first time last September.  Seven of the nine-member group met this week. Canon Elizabeth Paver – the former vice chair of the ACC — and Bishop Paul Sarker from Bangladesh were unable to attend on this occasion.

Archbishop Philip Freier – the primate of Australia – said it was significant that the meeting had been taking place immediately after Easter. He said that was a moment when the church reflected on the paradox of Jesus’ powerlessness on the cross and his glorious victory.

The Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, Michael Curry, continued the reference:

“After that Easter, the disciples walked together on the road to Emmaus. They didn’t recognize Jesus walking with them – yet they kept walking together. And, of course, in time, they realized exactly who he was.

“We have committed to walking together with each other – talking, listening and seeking to understand each other. I believe we will see the risen Christ walking with us as we deepen our relations with each other.”

Canon Rosemary Mbogo from the Anglican Church of Kenya said: “I feel that this week has built on what we did when we met last autumn. On that occasion, we began to establish working relationships. Now we are developing those relationships and exploring each other’s perspectives.”

The group will provide an interim report for the Primates’ Meeting at Canterbury in October. It hopes to meet again in the spring of 2018.

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Anglican Journal News, April 21, 2017

 

New name, more workers mulled for suicide prevention program

Posted on: April 21st, 2017 by CEP Administrator No Comments
General, Reviews

By Tali Folkins on April 19, 2017

Indigenous Ministries co-ordinator Canon Ginny Doctor performs on a traditional drum to introduce a suicide prevention talk by Anglican priest and psychologist Canon Martin Brokenleg in Toronto March 27. Photo: Tali Folkins


The Anglican Church of Canada’s Indigenous ministries department will likely rename its suicide prevention program to reflect a focus on the affirmation of life.

The idea is being discussed in the wake of a March 27 talk on suicide prevention by Canon Martin Brokenleg, an Indigenous Anglican priest and psychologist. Brokenleg’s all-day talk was part of “Making Good Minds,” a three-day suicide prevention consultation session in Toronto hosted by the Indigenous ministries department and spurred by the suicides of two 12-year-old girls of the Wapekeka First Nation in northern Ontario last January.

Indigenous ministries co-ordinator Canon Ginny Doctor says she and other attendees came away from Brokenleg’s talk feeling greatly uplifted. They were encouraged by Brokenleg’s central message, which was that suicide prevention workers, instead of focusing on the problems facing at-risk people, should instead put their energy into the positive—into assuring them of their infinite worth, and helping them be all they can be, for example.

As a result, the suicide prevention program will probably be renamed “Affirming the Life of Our People,” or something similar, Doctor says.

Doctor says she’s also excited by the idea that the church has something unique to contribute to life-affirmation, in Indigenous communities and Canadian society as a whole, because it can speak to people about their ultimate purpose in life, which governments and other secular organizations by their nature can’t.

“I think perhaps there’s a possibility to do something really, really great here in terms of affirming life through faith and through spirituality,” Doctor says.

“Many of our young people, even some of our adults, lack that spirituality that could’ve been taken away by residential schools, or other trauma or whatever. They haven’t had that spiritual formation. And I see that as one of the things that the church really needs to address because other agencies really can’t.”

One of the department’s biggest priorities in suicide prevention, she says, is to hire more people. Since 2013, the Rev. Nancy Bruyere has served as suicide prevention co-ordinator for the West and the Arctic; the Rev. Norm Casey, a member and former co-chair of the Anglican Council of Indigenous Peoples, handles the South and East. The two are assisted by a network of priests and lay volunteers. A plan to hire two more paid suicide prevention workers will likely be proposed next fall, Doctor says.

Because the caseload is so heavy, it often seems the church’s suicide prevention workers are more involved in crisis intervention than actual suicide prevention, she says. For the same reason, the church also needs to offer  more support to these workers, many of whom are also trying to cope with unusually high rates of death from other causes, she adds. “It’s urgent. They don’t have time…I know some communities that go from funeral to funeral…It takes its toll on you.”

Meanwhile, the department has been able to hire two new youth workers. Their formal title will be “youth ministers,” and a big part of their role, Doctor says, will in effect be suicide prevention—“uplifting our youth, and affirming their lives in the church, and as Anglicans and as good people.”

Last July, at General Synod, Indigenous ministries released “Suicide in Our Land: A Pastoral Care Resource,” a booklet and accompanying DVD intended to support the efforts of suicide prevention workers. Training material will also be developed to accompany that resource, Doctor says.

Tali Folkins

Tali Folkins

Tali Folkins has worked as a staff reporter for the Law Times and the New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal.  His writing has appeared in The Globe and Mail and The United Church Observer.

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Anglican Journal News, April 19, 2017

Queen Elizabeth distributes Royal Maundy money at Leicester Cathedral

Posted on: April 13th, 2017 by CEP Administrator No Comments
General, Reviews

Posted on: April 13, 2017

Queen Elizabeth II arrives at Leicester Cathedral for the traditional Royal Maundy service.
Photo Credit: Will Johnston / @whljohnston / www.willjohnstonphotography.com

Queen Elizabeth II has distributed ceremonial pouches of coins to 182 men and women in a Maundy Thursday ceremony that dates back to the 13th Century. The queen, wearing a turquoise green coat and matching hat, handed out the money during a service at Leicester Cathedral in the English Midlands. In doing so she has now taken part in the traditional annual Maundy Thursday service in every one of England’s Anglican cathedrals.

The recipients were selected for their service to the church and community. Each of them – 91 each of male and female as the Queen is 91 years of age – received two pouches. A red one contained a commemorative £5 coin, commemorating the Centenary of the House of Windsor and a 50p coin commemorating Sir Isaac Newton; while a white pouch contained 91 pence – again, equal to her age – in specially minted Maundy coins.

The handing out of coins by the Monarch on Maundy Thursday is an English tradition that began in the Middle Ages following the commandment to love one another that Jesus gave after washing the disciples’ feet at the Last Supper. It follows an early tradition dating back to around AD 600.

Hundreds of well-wishers lined the streets ahead of the Queen’s arrival. She was accompanied by her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh. Leicester Cathedral, which only became a cathedral in 1926 when the Diocese of Leicester was formed, hit the headlines in 2015 after the remains of Richard III, the last Plantagenet King of England, were re-interred in the cathedral having been discovered lying under a nearby car park.

An exhibition of photographs taken at today’s service will open in Leicester Cathedral on Monday. The exhibition, Servant, will showcase the one occasion in the year when the Queen goes to the recipients of awards, rather than them to her. A souvenir book accompanying the exhibition is also available. The exhibition will remain at the cathedral until 3 May.

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Photos by Will Johnston / @whljohnston /  www.willjohnstonphotography.com

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Anglican Communion News Service, Daily update from the ACNS on Maundy Thursday 13 April, 2017