Thinking Anglicans

New Westminster moves to reclaim parishes

The Diocese of New Westminster has issued this announcement: Diocese takes steps under Canon 15

The Diocese has taken steps under Canon 15 towards removing clergy who have left the Anglican Church of Canada rather than accepting the decisions of the Diocesan Synod and General Synod.

The Diocese has invoked the provision that returns control of the parishes to the Diocese, an action that was approved by Diocesan Council.

The parishes are St. Matthew’s Abbotsford and St. Matthias and St. Luke, Vancouver. Former diocesan clergy who have continued working in the parishes are Trevor Walters, Michael Stewart, and Don Gardner at St. Matthew’s, and Simon Chin at St. Matthias and St. Luke.

No steps have been taken at present at Good Shepherd, and at St. John’s Shaughnessy, Vancouver, two other parishes where former diocesan clergy remain who have left the Anglican Church of Canada.

In a memorandum to diocesan clergy, Commissary (Acting Bishop) Peter Elliott wrote that implementing this canon is a time consuming process, hence at this time the diocese was only proceeding with two parishes.

George Cadman, chancellor (chief legal officer) of the Diocese, said he hopes that the former clergy will now decide to leave voluntarily and that resort to the courts will be unnecessary, even though the possibility of litigation was raised in letters from the former officials at St. Matthew’s. No communications have been received from St. Matthias and St. Luke since its priest left the Anglican Church of Canada.

There is a formal press release (PDF) here, Diocese of New Westminster takes steps to remove clergy who have left the Anglican Church of Canada and there is the full text of a Memorandum to Diocesan Clergy (PDF).

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Cal McMillan+
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Cal McMillan+

The real world must find this all very strange. For most people, when you have had all you can take of an unsatisfactory work relationship and, with reluctance, decide to move on, you don’t stick around for a minute longer than absolutely necessary. Even if everyone in your branch plant is convinced you’re in the right, you still quit the premises. You end all connections with your former work and strike out on your own. So, to realize that there is a workplace where you can quit and still stay on the job and continue to foment rebellion amongst your… Read more »

JCF
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JCF

As in the Diocese of San Joaquin http://www.episcopalcafe.com/lead/dioceses/getting_off_the_fence_in_san_j.html , these steps are sadly necessary.

God grant us reconciliation, in Your time…