In her remarks to the recent meetings with synod office staff, archdeacons and the diocesan council, Bishop Anna set out six current priorities as a way of focusing the efforts (as they relate to the vision) of diocesan leadership in the coming months. These priorities were also published in the October 2021 issue of the Diocesan Post:
1. Faith in Foundation — Current ministries: post-pandemic re-opening
Support our churches in the work of re-opening. As we transition to a post-pandemic reality, this is an opportunity to consider carefully what needs to be done in-person and what can/should we continue to do online (e.g., worship, workshops, meetings, conferences).
2. Faith in Action — Reconciliation and Beyond: racism and decolonization
We need to be awake to the racial reckoning that is going on in the world and do our own work, including learning more about our colonial history. This is work we will each need to actively undertake in a life-long practice, as part of our labour to live into our baptismal covenant by respecting the dignity of every human being.
3. Faith in Action — Engaging God’s World: climate catastrophe
We are being called to the work of addressing the climate catastrophe. How will we collectively do this as the body of Christ? Discerning what is ours to do will be a focus of our work.
4. Faith in Foundation — Current Ministries: personnel
Our people our most valuable treasure. Diocesan Council has created a human resource (HR) working group, chaired by vice-chancellor Isabel Weeks, to update our HR policies and procedures and develop an HR manual.
Some of our recruitment and retention challenges:
We also need to encourage congregations to raise people up for ordained ministry; “Vocations Day” Saturday, November 6 to begin this work.
5. Faith in Foundation — Current Ministries: governance
The pandemic has forever altered how we are Church in many ways. We need to identify systems and ways of being that will work for us as we move forward post-pandemic. We also need a governance system that balances transparency and accountability with flexibility and adaptability.
6. Faith in Action/Faith in Foundation: stewardship
As we develop a 2022 budget, we will be transparent and conscious that we have a culture in this diocese that has yet to embrace a robust financial stewardship ethos. At the parish level this means that many parishes are overly reliant on rental income. At the synod level apportionment and investment income may not be enough to cover expenses. Difficult decisions will have to made to adjust for this reality.
Download a copy of these priorities below.