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68th Synod of the Diocese of Edmonton

My Experience

This was the first time I attended a Synod.  Not being a cradle Anglican, it was a terrific look into the bureaucracy and the procedures that keep us running smoothly. Thankfully I was fortunate enough to sit beside Rev Chelsy on Friday and Rev Susan Storey on Saturday who generously answered all of my questions. 

The opening evening at the Cathedral included a smudge which I found interesting:

“Taking the smoke of the smudge into yourself makes you a “standing stone”.  It helps you to stand erect, to center yourself, To prepare your self to engage with the Creator and the world. The smoke can have various destinations, but typically there are three: Your eyes, so that you see as God sees, as Creator wishes you to see.  Your heart, so that, as in confession, the truth of God enters you, To heal and to restore.  Your head, in fact the top of your head, So that you become secure in the knowledge that you are loved by God.”

Representatives form the Lutheran, Moravian, and Mennonite churches where there to provide blessings on our Synod. 

We ending Friday evening by voting for positions on the Executive Council, Diocesan Court, General Synod and Provincial Synod.Saturday, hosted by St Matthias Church, was a long but very interesting day.  

The day was filled with legislative resolutions that will streamline some of our canon, make electing youth members easier, establish closer ties with our ecumenical partners, streamline the management of church assets, make it easier for clergy who chose to work past the age of 65, better relations and reparations to indigenous peoples, and more inclusivity for our LGBTQ2SIA+ as full siblings.

It was very heart warming to see the level of participation from our indigenous and queer family members.  I really enjoyed the report regarding Basecamp and what our Diocese is doing for the youth. 

We had two seasons of table talk where the six of us around our table discussed:

  • How we connect with God: running, movies, books, the outdoors, intersensory prayer, silence, centering prayer. 
  • What could parishes do to facilitate growth in faith: Parish outdoor walks, not make baptism a restriction to inclusion.

All in all, a wonderful experience.

Thanks for allowing me the opportunity.

Dan Rempel