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  ANiC Newsletter: 23 April, 2012 ... pdf version
    

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News – ANiC and AEN

ANiC and ACNA events calendar
April 23-27 – GAFCon Leadership Conference, London, England
May 12. 4pm – Ordination of the Rev Brian de Visser at St Peter’s & St Paul’s Ottawa
May 27, 3pm – Ordinations of the Rev Anson Ann & Shihoko Warren, Good Shepherd (Vancouver)
June 4 – ACNA Archbishop’s Cabinet meeting, Ridgecrest, NC
June 5 – ACNA College of Bishops meeting, Ridgecrest, NC
June 6 – ACNA Provincial Council meeting, Ridgecrest, NC
June 7-10 – ACNA Provincial Assembly, Ridgecrest, NC
June 11-12 – Asian & Multicultural Ministries in Canada (AMMiC) conference, Vancouver
June 22-23 – Anglican Fourth Day Province-wide Grand Ultreya, Montgomery, Alabama
August 7-8 – ACNA Archbishop’s Cabinet meeting, Pittsburgh, PA
August 7-8 – ACNA Archbishop’s Cabinet meeting, Pittsburgh, PA
Aug 31 – Sept 1 – ACNA Archbishop’s Cabinet meeting, Pittsburgh, PA
September 1-2 - ACNA Executive Committee meeting, Pittsburgh, PA
October TBA – ACNA Bishops/Clergy & Spouse Retreat
November 14-16 – ANiC synod, clergy day and lay conference in Ottawa


Prayer for Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans leaders conference – on now!
Please pray for the 200+ delegates from 30 countries – especially our delegates, Bishop Don Harvey and the Rev Ray David Glenn – meeting in London, England, April 23-27. This is the first leadership conference since the historic GAFCon meeting in Jerusalem in 2008. The Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans (FCA) is the global movement which grew out of that initial GAFCon meeting.

An email bulletin to FCA members regarding the conference states:
“Central to the teaching of the conference will be the uniqueness and sufficiency of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Epistle to the Colossians has been chosen as the Biblical book to be studied because of its unmatched teaching on this theme…. We will be discussing the Gospel, the Church, the Family, and the nature of Leadership, Aid and Development, and Evangelism. These involve some of the big challenges facing Anglican Christians today and we hope that they will begin conversations and contributions not just at the conference, but from all over the Communion.”

An April 23rd release states:
“… From this meeting will emerge key networks and commission capable of strengthening the worldwide churches and delivering the Christian message to the world.” It goes on to call for the chair of the Primates Meeting, a position historically held by the Archbishop of Canterbury, to “be elected by the Primates themselves”. Finally, the release announces that GAFCON 2 will be held in May 2013 at a venue to be announced. It concludes “We believe that the joyful meeting of orthodox Anglicans from all over the world will be a dynamic force for restating the gospel of Jesus Christ in the face of revisionist attempts to change basic doctrines and turn Christianity merely into a movement for social betterment. It is the preaching of the Gospel of Christ crucified which saves men and women and transforms the world.”

More information is available on the GAFCon website. Updates will be posted during the conference so you can better pray for these leaders and the important discussions taking place.

We are asked to pray for:
Resolution of any remaining travel matters for delegates (eg visas)
Safe travel and good health of delegates
Faithful and Spirit-filled teaching from the Scriptures
Heartfelt unity and fellowship
A God-given vision for the future of Anglicanism, in light of the current challenges
Clear goals and a common mind in service of Christ


Bishop Don speaks in England
While in London for the GAFCon leaders’ conference, our moderator Bishop Don Harvey will speak at Christ Church Beckenham on the evening of April 27. An email announcement of the meeting states that he will speak on the “
encouragements and challenges facing the Anglican Church worldwide and especially of the situation faced in North America (Canada in particular) by orthodox believers in a context comparable to ours [in England].”


A testimony to God’s leading and gracious provision
A service, led by Bishop Don Harvey, was held at Good Shepherd (Vancouver) on April 14 to consecrate the now mortgage-free building. In giving their testimonies, Bishop Stephen Leung (rector) and four parishioners recounted how God had worked miraculously over a 20 year period to bring the congregation to that day of rejoicing.

They marveled that a court order granting Good Shepherd the right to use a bequest came exactly 20 year – to the day – from when Dr Daphne Chun, a parishioner, had willed the gift to the congregation. They also told how 10 attempts to develop or purchase property had failed before God lead them to rent their current facility in 2004. When the rental term expired in early 2009 – in the midst of an economic downturn and with the bequest tied up in legal proceedings – God led first the church leaders and then the parishioners to willingly and sacrificially give
“more than they were able”, some even remortgaging their own homes, so that the down payment could be made.

Although the initial court case – involving the four ANiC parishes and the Diocese of New Westminster – awarded Good Shepherd the bequest, the congregation and leaders willingly, and with nothing to gain, put the money at risk in order to show solidarity with the other parishes in the court appeal.
“After all,” said Eric Law, “we have a long road to walk together to rebuild the orthodox Anglican church here in Canada. I am sure we would have regretted it if we looked back several years from now that our fellowship was tarnished because of a sum of money we already counted as lot in the first place.”

Now, the bequest has enabled Good Shepherd to pay off the mortgage.

Bishop Leung told the congregations,
“Reminiscing about the past 20 years, we can only see God’s unfailing goodness and mercy towards his faithful servants.” Edwin Tsui added, “We were frustrated with our church development, but God told us to wait patiently. If we had invested [the bequest] into a church building earlier, it would have gone to the Diocese of New Westminster [due to the eventual court ruling]. God has His own plan and timing. Today, we can successfully use Dr Chun’s bequest, and her wish is fulfilled. Now we have our own church building where we can further God’s ministry. All Glory be to God!” Joyce (Lee) Yung concluded, “I hope that everyone in the Good Shepherd family who witnessed what our Lord took us through will remember and pass this story on to generations to come after us so that this story of provision and deliverance by the Lord can be an encouragement and assurance for all on the journey of faith.”

Audio of these testimonies and photos of the service are posted on the Good Shepherd website.


Asian and Multicultural Ministry in Canada event draws 70 Vancouver area pastors
AMMiC together with Vancouver Chinese Evangelical Ministerial Fellowship organized a one day retreat for 70 Mandarin and Cantonese speaking Chinese pastors in Greater Vancouver entitled
“Rekindle the evangelism passion of the evangelical pastors.” The day began with a talk given by the Rev Dr Ka Lun Leung, the principal of a Bible seminary in Hong Kong. This was followed by a session with three local pastors and small group discussions. The day ended with a theological dialogue between the Rev Dr Leung and our Bishop Stephen Leung. The retreat seemed to be deeply appreciated and those in attendance offered suggestions for future gatherings.


Bishops request prayer
Our bishops ask us to pray for the upcoming electoral synod in Ottawa in November and for God’s clear leading in the election of a coadjutor bishop. The coadjutor will succeed ANiC’s moderator Bishop Don Harvey when he retires in June 2014.


Theological training opportunities
Ottawa – The Ottawa Theological College, which is associated with Church of the Messiah (Ottawa), will open its doors in September, offering a variety of courses online and in the classroom. Its website states: Our goal is to bring students and scholars together to teach and equip Christian [ordained and lay] leaders in and around the capital region. We seek to lift up the Good News of Jesus Christ by providing Bible-centred courses and programs for full and part-time students… In the broadest Christian sense, Ottawa Theological College is cross-denominational… Ottawa Theological College is also Anglican… We at Ottawa Theological College are also evangelical Christians. We are dedicated to training students for Christian service by providing them a solid curriculum involving scripture, doctrine, and practical theology, particularly emphasizing expository preaching for those called to proclamation of the word.”

Fall courses will include:
Bible, Church & Mission (Graber, & Staff)
Doctrine I: God & Creation (Griffin)
Spiritual Foundations (Donison)
Church History I: Early Church (Graber)
Old Testament I: Pentateuch (dos Santos)

Abbotsford – Saint Matthew’s Abbotsford is launching a School of Life & Ministry for adults. Courses, which began in January, will be taught in three five-week terms each year. The brochure states: “Saint Matthew’s School of Ministry will systematically train the laity in the fullness of Christian doctrine and practice with a view to making mature disciples who in turn can make disciples.” The brochure also explains the need for such teaching, “The cultural context that the Church finds itself in today is one of pluralism, historic amnesia, theological thinness, and individualism which frequently leads to divisiveness. This context has resulted in the recognized need at Saint Matthew’s for grounding its parishioners in the Holy Scriptures and the Great Tradition (the beliefs and practices) of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.” A website for the program is under development.

Artizo – Young adults considering or pursuing parish ministry, should consider the Artizo Institute. Artizo provides practical training, internships and mentorship by established, godly Christian leaders. Its website states: “The Artizo Institute is a Canadian initiative with a mandate to identify and equip Christian leaders committed to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Artizo seeks out young men and women with gifts for ministry, and prepares them for a future in ordained ministry. The Artizo Institute helps these individuals grow in godly character, theological understanding, and ministry skills, particularly the effective communication of the gospel.”

Over the years, Artizo has prepared a number of capable young leaders for ministry in ANiC and elsewhere. Within the last year or so, five trainees have completed the program, three of whom are ministering within ANiC: the Rev Anson Ann (Good Shepherd, Vancouver), the Rev Ben Roberts, (St John’s Richmond, BC) and the Rev Mike Dobson (St Andrew’s, Delta, BC)


ARDFC report
Georges Bisoga – our contact in the Diocese of Kindu in the Congo – reports that the last installment of funding from ARDFC has been received by the Diocese for our refugee resettlement project there. To give you a sense of the lack of infrastructure in the area the diocese has its bank account in a neighbouring country – Rwanda. A trip to the bank requires many hours of driving. Other infrastructure we in North America take for granted is equally lacking. Please do continue to pray for God’s blessing on this project and the people of the diocese who are working to help returning war refuges. Pray also for God’s peace to reign in the Congo so the country can begin to rebuild. An estimate three million people have been killed in the Congo.

ARDFC’s currently projects, for which we are raising funds, are in Peru and Myanmar. Both are microfinance projects which help women trapped in poverty develop micro-businesses to provide for themselves and their children.


Job opportunities in BC
Church of the Ascension (Langley, BC) is seeking a part-time parish worker. See ANiC’s job opportunities page for more information.

St Andrew’s (Delta, BC) needs a summer music leader and instrumentalist to help with Sunday morning worship. If you can step in to help, please see the details posted on ANiC’s website.


Ordination on May 12 in Ottawa
Bishop Charlie Masters will ordain the Rev Brian de Visser to the priesthood on Saturday, May 12 at 4pm at St Peter and St Paul's (Ottawa). All are invited to attend and clergy are invited to robe. Please keep Brian and Sarah and their three children, Anna, Noah and Levi, in your prayers.


Baptisms and confirmations
Church of the Messiah (Norwich, ON) – The Rev Ronda Nychka had the joy of baptizing two teenage girls on Easter Sunday by full emersion. Ronda+ reports, “We lit the Christ Candle before the Service on Easter Day by the fire in a milk bucket: the palms were burned in the bucket on Ash Wednesday; sins written down on paper and nailed to the Cross on Good Friday, then burned in the bucket on Easter Sunday - lots of suffering poured into a bucket of JOY! Then the young ladies led the procession with the Cross and became Acolytes after they were baptized [by] FULL immersion – Hallelujah! One of the ladies gave her testimony! The ladies were presented with "pink" Bibles and ANiC pins.”


Parish and regional news
Saint Matthew’s (Abbotsford, BC) has launched a School of Life and Ministry designed to systematically train adult laity in “Christian doctrine and practice with a view to making mature disciples who in turn can make disciples”. Three five-week terms will be offered each year with a range of courses.

Good Shepherd (St Catharines, ON) is moving to new premises. Their last worship service at their old building, 359 Grantham Ave, will be on April 29 beginning at 10am; that service will conclude at their new location, Grace Mennonite Church, 677 Niagara Street, St Catharines, with a time of worship and the celebration of the Eucharist.

This move was highlighted by a recent St Catharines Standard article which discusses the reasons for the move and the warm welcome Good Shepherd has experienced by the Grace Mennonite congregation which will be sharing its facilities. Good Shepherd’s warden Pat Decker is quoted in the article saying the difficulties of the past four years, including the lost of their long-time building, have brought the congregation
“much closer together”. She adds, ““We have really been thankful to God for the time that we’ve been able to spend in that building. We have loved the building and cared for the building. At the same time, we recognize that our God does not live in buildings. He lives in the human heart.”

St George’s (Burlington, ON) is building a new facility and the congregation stepped up with pledges on Easter Sunday. The church reports that the Lord worked miraculously and the people gave sacrificially, raising over $1 million. Pray for the remaining rezoning issues to be cleared.

Please email parish news to Marilyn or call 1-866-351-2642 ext 4020.


News – Anglican Church in North America (ACNA)

Provincial Assembly to offer range of breakout sessions and special interest groups
The ACNA website reports that the June 7-9 provincial assembly in North Carolina will feature
“…the opportunity to gather in “special interest groups” where participants will meet for fellowship, and to teach and learn from others in their area of ministry. These special interest groups will gather on Saturday afternoon toward the end of Assembly. Lay and ordained leaders from around the Province have organized thought-provoking group discussions on a range of topics.”

Topics/interest groups will include: Faith in the Workplace, Clergy Spouses, Bi-Vocational Ministry, Women Clergy, Higher Education and Seminary Discussion, Anglicans for Life, Internationals in our Churches, Anglican Relief and Development Fund, American Anglican Council, Church Planting, Discerning the Call, and more. The intention is to allow individuals to connect and network with others who have a similar passion or interest and to “dive deeper” into the main focus areas of the wider Assembly: Captivating Disciples, Multiplying Congregations and Transforming Communities.

There is still time to register for Assembly 2012


Tearing the Fabric of Communion report on the Episcopal Church (TEC)
The American Anglican Council has released Tearing the Fabric - 2012 which contains “up-to-date quotes from TEC leaders denying the essentials of the faith, figures on TEC's membership decline, the number of active cases in litigation, and the total amount TEC has expended to date in its scorched-earth litigation tactics.”


Short journey from Rwanda to Congo
A letter from Bishop Chuck Murphy, leader of the Anglican Mission in the Americas (AMiA), announces that the bishops, clergy and churches which left the oversight of the Province of Rwanda have found a new home – at least temporarily – in the Province of Congo. A letter from the Primate of Congo later confirmed this. Anglican journalists Kevin Kallsen and George Conger discuss, in the April 16 edition of the Anglican Unscripted newsmagazine video, the puzzling inconsistencies in the AMiA’s actions and statements from the start of this saga when Bishop Murphy declared that is was time for them “to leave Africa”. See also this Anglican Ink article.

Earlier a letter from the House of Bishops of Rwanda stated that that Province would release clergy, but only to another Province. It also stated that:

A missionary district of the Church of Rwanda will be formed for churches and clergy wishing to remain canonically within Rwanda. This missionary district is expected to eventually become one of more sub-jurisdictions within ACNA.
Parishes wishing to leave the Church of Rwanda and move directly into ACNA diocese may do so with Rwanda’s blessing.


Legal issues: Suing individuals and Supreme Court challenge
Suing individuals – In the April 16 Anglican Unscripted newsmagazine video, Canon lawyer A S Haley is discusses the practice commonly used by the US Episcopal Church – and the Anglican Church of Canada – of suing, not just departing churches, but the lay and clergy leaders of those congregations. He says this tactic is designed to intimidate, punish and deplete financial resources.

Virginia – VirtueOnline reports that Truro Anglican Church has reached a settlement with the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia that will allow the ACNA congregation to lease the church buildings until June 2013. “An important feature of this settlement is that both sides have agreed to enter into a covenant of mutual charity and respect.” It is reported that St Paul’s Anglican (Haymarket, Virginia) has also reached a settlement with the TEC diocese. Another article provides insight into the mixed emotions of those turning over The Falls Church property to TEC.

Supreme Court – The Church of England Newsletter provides an update on the status of key legal actions in the US involving ACNA dioceses and parishes. The article particularly focuses on the application to the US Supreme Court brought by several churches for a hearing of their property cases, explaining the basis for the application and the arguments being made.


Bishops to discuss and demonstrate unity in England
ACNA’s Bishop John Guernsey will join Bishop Mark Lawrence (Diocese of South Carolina, TEC) at an April 25 gathering in Surrey, England at which they will discuss developments in North America; explain why some orthodox Anglicans have chosen to stay in TEC and why others have chosen to move to ACNA; and explain how those with similar theological positions – such as the two bishops – are able to work and fellowship together across the organizational divides.


Other news in brief

Canada
While numbers remain small, about 100 former Anglicans recently joined the Roman Catholic Church in rites of reception in several communities. Zenit reports that there were two former Anglican bishops included in that number: Peter Wilkinson and Carl Reid
. Most were members of the Traditional Anglican Church. The Ottawa Citizen reports that “They will become part of the Canadian Deanery of St. John the Baptist of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter under Msgr. Jeffrey Steenson, a former Anglican bishop who is a married Catholic priest based in Houston.”


Anglican Church of Canada
Companions of Jerusalem – The Anglican Journal reports that the ACoC is strengthening ties with the Diocese of Jerusalem and Bishop Suheil Dawani by soliciting clergy and parishioners to join the “Canadian Companions of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem”. Members of this new organization are to promote and fund initiatives of the diocese. The Journal notes that, “The new organization follows a resolution from General Synod 2010 in Halifax that called for ties with the diocese to be built and strengthened. Since that time, the Rev. Maj. John Organ, a Canadian, has been appointed as the next chaplain to Bishop Suheil. The dioceses of Ottawa and Jerusalem are also establishing a companion relationship.”

Diocese of New Westminster – The AEC blog notes that the ACoC Diocese of New Westminster plans to spend up to $4.5 million to “plant churches” in the three buildings which formerly housed ANiC congregations. However, “If, after a period of time, the Diocese decides one or other of these new church plants is not going to become vital and sustainable the project funding will be returned from the disposition of assets no longer required.”

Taoist temple – A former diocese of New Westminster church building is featured in the Burnaby News Leader in its new incarnation – as a Taoist temple.

Eastern Canada – The AEC blog notes that an upcoming synod will consider reducing the number of dioceses in Eastern Canada from the current seven, centralizing some administrative functions common to the remaining dioceses as well as halving the size of synod. These motions are driven by “the changing demographic of the Anglican Church within the Ecclesiastical Province of Canada in terms of both decreasing numbers and the increased cost of providing ecclesiastical services within our seven existing dioceses.”


United States
Evangelical leader Chuck Colson passed to Glory on April 21 after suffering a brain hemorrhage days earlier. We thank God for his ministry and legacy.


United States
The Living Church reports that, “Three member bishops of Communion Partners have submitted a General Convention resolution that affirms the proposed Anglican Communion Covenant.”


Australia
The Australian House of Bishops has reaffirmed the church’s position forbidding the ordination and deployment of non-celibate gay clergy. This is in keeping with the position held by the majority of Provinces in the Anglican Communion.


Myanmar/Burma
The Church of England Newspaper reports that while recent elections in Burma indicate a small improvement in the political climate, Christians are still being persecuted and churches ransacked by the military in its war against minority tribes.

Saudi Arabia
Some church leaders have condemned a call by the Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia to destroy all Christian churches in the Arabian Peninsula. The Church of England Newspaper reports that
“Over 3.5 million Christians live in the Arabian Peninsula including one million Filipino Roman Catholics and several hundred thousand members of the Church of South India along with members of other orthodox churches and protestant denominations.” Saudi Arabia systematically persecutes and jails Christians – with virtually no condemnation from the international community.


England
Anglican Mainstream, a Britain-based orthodox Anglican group, together with its partners, is considering legal proceedings against the mayor of London after he intervened to block bus advertising that supported those who have come out of the homosexual lifestyle and see themselves as “post-gay”.


England
A leading candidate for the next Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr John Sentamu is said to be the victim of a smear campaign based on racism. However, others say that the Ugandan-born Archbishop of York is maligned because of his more conservative theology.


South Sudan
A recent conference brought together 65 tribal leaders to discuss and work toward peace by addressing underlying causes of the inter-tribal conflict.


Soul food

Well worth your time
Please take five minutes to read Canon Phil Ashey’s commentary and mediation in the April 13 edition of the American Anglican Council’s newsletter. He discusses the issues in the Communion – the battle for the soul of Anglicanism, not only in North America, but all over the Communion – which, on a human level, lead us to despair; but he then goes on to show us how we can live in hope in the Lord.


Gospel resources
Teaching – Sessions from the Together for the Gospel pastors’ conference, held earlier this month, have been posted online. Speakers included Matt Chandler, John Piper, Kevin DeYoung, David Platt, Thabiti Anyabwile, Mark Dever, Albert Mohler, C J Mahaney and Ligon Duncan. The 2012 conference theme was “The Underestimated Gospel”.

Technology – A USA Today article looks at church’s use of technology to advance the Gospel – websites, streaming services, online materials, Facebook pages, QR codes, live chats, apps and optimized search engine algorithms. However, the key is to use the tools technology has given us without being subsumed by them; Technology should enhance, not replace, face-to-face gatherings, worship, discussion, debate and service.

WitnessCanadian Christianity offers an article on how grandparents can be instrumental in bringing their grandchildren to Christ.

Youth – A youth ministry conference is planned for 14-17 August in Caronport, Saskatchewan at Briercrest College and Seminary.


Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali interviewed
In a wide-ranging video interview, Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali discussed western society and the state of Christianity in the world.


Just for fun



Copyright Gospel Communications International, Inc - www.reverendfun.com


Thought
Life is not just about how fast you run or how high you climb, but how well you bounce.
And now a word from our sponsor
For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died; and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised.

From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.


2 Corinthians 5:14-21 ESV



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