Downey Lectures - October 19th & 20th

Downey Lectures are open to all and free of charge. They are being held next Wednesday Oct 19th and Thursday Oct 20th  at Ambrose Seminary in Calgary. This is of special interest to some of us this year as the lecturer is the esteemed Rev. Dr. Ephraim Radner from Wycliffe Seminary in Toronto.

The lectures are:
Wednesday, October 19, 7:30 pm – The Bible and the God of the Living: How Things Happen Scripturally
Thursday, October 20, 11:00 am – How I Learned to Read the Bible
Thursday, October 20, 7:30 pm – A Scriptural ‘Natural Theology’?  How the Bible Talks about the World

If our congregation has an opportunity to hear Dr. Radner, Rev. Alan and I would both encourage them to go. The address is 150 Ambrose Circle S.W. It is west off 69 St SW at the Westside Recreation Complex (between 17th and 26th Avenues).

Heart For Healing - Niger

Michelle Pieké
Physiotherapist serving with SIM at Danja Hospital, Niger

Email: michelle.pieke@sim.org
Blog: heart4healing-niger.blogspot.ca

Though I did not grow up in the church, I always felt I knew who God was. At age 12, I was challenged through a family tragedy to choose to see God as sovereign and to put my trust in Him. Around the same age, I decided I wanted to be a physiotherapist.

I did not want to be an overseas missionary. I loved to travel, but I wanted to be a light at home in Canada. In 2009, however, the Spirit firmly pressed upon me that it was time for me to follow Him into the mission field.

I spent the following summer at Mukinge Hospital, Zambia for my first missions exposure. While I was challenged professionally, treating conditions I had never seen before, God also challenged me spiritually, increasing my trust on Him and leading me to choose to work for Him long-term overseas. In 2012 I began work at SIM’s Danja Hospital in Niger, and completed my first term in 2015. 

Habitat for Humanity project

Rev. Alan is partnering with a Habitat for Humanity project building a house in Calgary on August 24th, 2016. The Diocese of Calgary has encouraged clergy to participate as part of it's 125th anniversary as a diocese. It is part of an interfaith project and many clergy and ministers will be working together from different faith backgrounds to build a total of 12 homes. He hopes to raise $1000. Please consider donating to this very worthy cause!!! Many thanks in advance!
Here is the fundraising link for you to donate if you are so inclined :
https://fundraise.habitatsouthernab.ca/fundraise?is_new=1&fcid=732053
 

54th Annual Flower Festival

54th Annual Flower Festival Flower Festival
Christ Church Millarville
Sat July 23rd & Sun July 24th
Tea served on Saturday only
11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Cost: $6.00
Children 6 & under: $3.00
Church Service on Sunday, 11:30 a.m.
All Are Welcome

Congratulations Audrey!

Congratulations Audrey!
St. James, Priddis congregation are delighted to report that Audrey Robinson, was recently awarded THE SILVER CROSS from the Anglican Women's Association for her wonderful Service and Volunteering. Congratulations Audrey!

Archbishop's Pastoral Letter - Diocese of Calgary

Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

Grace and peace to you in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

General Synod

The triennial meeting of the General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada will convene in Toronto, on July 7th and run until July 13th, 2016.  As you will know, General Synod is responsible for governance and leadership in significant areas of our church’s life.  Amongst other things, this Synod will address resolutions relating to Physician Assisted Dying, work on liturgical texts, ecumenical relationships, the ministry of deacons, social and ecological justice and proposed changes to the marriage canon to include same-sex marriage.  The Diocese of Calgary will be represented at General Synod by Rene Boere, Carol Hayes and Stephen Koning as lay delegates, Sara Gateman as youth delegate, Pilar Gateman, James Robinson and Jane Rowland as clergy delegates and myself.  Please pray for your delegates both as we prepare for and participate in the Synod.

Generous Listening

This past January and February we began a “Generous Listening” process in the Diocese of Calgary on the topic of same-sex blessings.  The purpose of this process is to engage members of the diocese in conversation in a way that allows people from differing perspectives to hear and understand the perspectives of those with whom they disagree.  The process was designed and facilitated for us by Janet Marshall and took place in two parts: first, a gathering of clergy in January; and second, an event for laity repeated in four gatherings in different regions of the diocese.  There were 47 who attended the clergy event and 71 who participated in the lay gatherings.  Janet Marshall then reported back to diocesan leadership on what was heard and experienced at the meetings.  To quote from her report, “People appreciated how they were able to listen and talk with each other.  Regardless of where they stand on the topic of the blessing of same-sex unions, the process allowed people to listen, speak, and feel heard in ways that were surprisingly honest and respectful.  Participants heard and acknowledged each other’s struggles.  They had a better sense of what’s at stake for people” And, “The listening events were genuine and respectful.  There was an open sharing of personal experience and commitments.  Participants expressed and heard each other’s pain, sorrow, anger, concern, struggle, care, enthusiasms, and hopes.  While there is no common mind within the diocese on the blessings of same-sex unions, people are willing to work to understand each other better and discern a response that is pastoral, Spirit-led and expressive of the best of our common Christian life….  There was general affirmation that people want more of this type of listening within the diocese.” 

 Following the gatherings, clergy and lay leadership of the diocese met to discuss next steps. Included in those were the writing of a pastoral letter by me, continuing generous listening processes within the diocese, holding learning events within the diocese focusing on the theological and hermeneutical questions that arose during the listening process, and working to better the knowledge within the diocese of the pertinent documents, decisions, and actions of the Anglican Church of Canada.

 In keeping with the report’s recommendations we will begin later this year to provide learning opportunities in which the best of Biblical, theological and other scholarship is engaged to focus on the questions that arose during the listening process and to then engage further listening process gatherings to continue the discussion.  I have been in conversation with Janet Marshall about this – more information and dates will be provided in the next while.

 As the process of listening and engagement continues to unfold I ask, above all, that you uphold all of this in prayer – asking the leading and discernment of the Holy Spirit for all involved and indeed for the whole of the Diocese of Calgary.

The Mission of the Church

As I write this I am participating in a consultation on Vital and Healthy Parishes convened by the National church.  I am reminded afresh by the discussions that have taken place that we must always keep before us our primary calling to live out our identity as the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church in its Anglican expression.  We are to have or actions and common life guided by the Great Commandment to love God with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength and our neighbour as ourselves; and by the Great Commission, to “make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I (Jesus) have commanded you.”  I am reminded that we need to shape the lives our congregations in ways which call people into a life of transformation in Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit – enabling people to become ever more Christ-like.  I am reminded that our churches need to be marked by engaging worship, authentic community, formation for discipleship, outreach to the community in witness to God’s love and active invitation drawing others into relationship with God in Jesus.  I pray that God will, by the power of the Spirit, give us both the will and the way to live into this reality more and more, day by day.

May the peace of God which passes all understanding keep our hearts and minds in the knowledge and love of God and of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

In Christ,
The Most Rev’d Greg Kerr-Wilson
Archbishop of Calgary

The Ordination of a Deacon

In case you missed it, Gordon Pontifex was ordained as a Deacon on January 17th at Christ Church, Millarville. It was a very special service at which Archbishop Greg Kerr Wilson and several other Anglican clergy from the Calgary Diocese were present. It was fittingly held on the Eve of the Confession of St. Peter.

Since all three churches in our parish will be seeing a lot more of Gordon as a transitional Deacon (meaning he intends to proceed to the priesthood), we thought you might like to know a bit about Gordon and how God brought him to the Meota Parish!

Gordon worked as a high school physics teacher in Calgary for over 20 years. Upon retirement, he moved to Drumheller where he received his initial call to ministry. He ignored it at first but God’s persistence led Gordon to Ambrose Seminary in 2008. Gordon was placed with St. Luke’s Anglican Parish in 2012. After graduation the following year, Gordon spent the summer in charge of St. Saviour’s Anglican Church in Barkerville. Gordon also provided ministry services to St. Magloire’s Anglican Church in Drumheller. At the request of Archbishop Greg Kerr Wilson, Gordon attended Wycliffe College in Toronto. To complete his Certificate in Anglican Studies from Wycliffe, Gordon has been placed with us in the Meota Parish. 

Gordon has felt a warm welcome from all three churches and is most pleased to be working daily with Rev. Alan whom he considers a good friend.

Though initially apprehensive about entering ministry at a later stage in life, Gordon could not ignore his calling. “The Lord guided me through seminary and I am confident that He will do the same as I continue on into ministry," says Gordon.

Gordon will complete his certificate mid-March, after which he will stay with Meota part-time, helping lead Sunday services and providing pastoral care in hospitals and lodges. 

The Parish looks forward to growing in faith alongside Gordon Pontifex!