August E-News DOTAC: Anglican Deacons Canada 2021 Conference
July 9th -July 10th
This was a historic conference. It was our first virtual conference. It was the first time we were privileged to be able to welcome Lutheran Deacons from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC). The conference theme: “Deacons in a Pandemic and its Aftermath” touched the reality of those who attended.
Primate Archbishop Linda Nicholls gave the keynote address. The primate used the image of the Deacon as a foot in the door, pushing open and calling the faithful into service. The deacon, she said, observes, notices and names the disparities, the needs. “This is your moment. You must be our guide.”
“We are and will be a church without influence and need to shed the millstone of colonial structures”. While deacons call the church to attention, this is also a time which calls for “a new and deepened servanthood of all.” She warned such servanthood is costly. We need to ask questions: who is missing, whose voices are not heard, who have we not listened to? This discernment requires deep humility. It is a time of listening critically to the world and the church. To see her full speech go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-_HjFYYtmI
The Primate’s words were mirrored in the reflections of Susan Bell, ELCIC National Bishop, and Susan Johnson, Bishop of Niagara. Bishop Bell noted the work of Deacons is a work of knowing and relationship building. It is the work of building trust. Bishop Johnson referred to the work done in the Lutheran church and the changes in language concerning deacons. She reminded us that all the baptised are called to “diakonia” through their baptism. Deacons are to lead and work to ensure the gospel is heard as good news. Deacons are living bridges. She also spoke of the desire in the ELCIC to “flatten the ministry of all in orders.”
The closing service ended with a new worship song video; “We seek your Kingdom” https://youtu.be/vS_fCJJvVOY
May we too embrace our calling to Transform, Revive and Heal society!
Further information may be found at: www.anglicandeacons.ca