A weekly roundup of Anglican Communion news plus opinion, reviews, photos, profiles and other things of interest from across the Anglican/Episcopal world.
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This edition includes...
- This week's Anglican Communion news
- Anglican Life - Episcopal Relief and Development respond to tornado disaster in Missouri
- Anglican Life - The Church of South India's video on their life and ministry
- Anglican Life - Nigeria to hold Communicators Conference
- Anglican Life - Generous Anglicans support military chaplaincy
- Video - A Christian flashmob... In Beirut!
- Comment - Rapture? The Apostle Paul would say: "Don't be silly"
- Publication of the Week - New research reveals renewed child detention fears
- Bookshelf - Yancey writes about the power of prayer
- Bookshelf - What's it like for a child whose parent abuses drink or drugs?
- Art & Heritage - Italian alterpieces at the UK's National Gallery.
- The coming week's Anglican Cycle of Prayer.
Episcopal Relief and Development to Assist Joplin
From the website of the Episcopal Diocese of Texas
At least 117 people are dead after a massive tornado tore through the town of Joplin, Missouri, on Sunday, May 22. The storm caused severe property damage, destroying homes and businesses, and disabling one of the major hospitals in town. Electricity and phone services were cut off, and many roads remain impassable due to downed trees and piles of debris. The path of the tornado is reported to have been at least half a mile wide and four miles long, and rescue crews are still working to locate survivors who may be trapped in the wreckage.
Episcopal Relief & Development has been in contact with the Episcopal Diocese of West Missouri, and is providing assistance in the aftermath of this disaster. Funds will be used to provide food, gas cards and temporary shelter for those in need.
Please pray for all those impacted by the tornado, especially families who are grieving, and for the rescue workers and all those who are helping the community to recover.
To support disaster response in Joplin and other communities in the US, please donate to the USA Disaster Response Fund.
The Church of South India shows how it responds to key issues
CSI's Synod Diaconal Concerns has posted a 15-minute video ‘Navaratna’: “Testimonies of Community Transformation” on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tiOS2GvcmSs.
Learn about how the church is responding to a range of issues in South India including early marriage of girls, HIV and AIDS, microenterprise, and relief and development.
Nigeria to hold Communicators Conference
From the website of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion)
The 3rd Diocesan Communicators Conference, Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) comes up between Thursday 26th and Saturday 28th May 2011.
The Primate of all Nigeria (Anglican Communion), the Most Rev Nicholas .D. Okoh, will declare the Conference open formally on Friday 27th May 2011 at the St Matthias Church Wuse Zone 3 at 9am.
The Conference shall explore the possibility of educating communicators on the nitty gritty of internet operations and various ways to propagate and project the good news, the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
This all important Conference will also brainstorm and share ideas together and create rapport with a view to equipping Communicators for optimum performance. About 162 Diocesan Communicators in the church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) would be participating. The theme of the Conference is “Balanced Reporting of the church in the 21st Century.
Generous Anglicans support military chaplaincy
Military chaplains in Halifax sing on board the HMCS Iroquois as part of the Silent Night Project.
Canadian Anglicans have recently expressed their support for military chaplaincy through large and small gifts to the Bishop Ordinary Trust. In early May, Blake Goldring, chairman and CEO of AGF Management Ltd., gave $500,000 to the trust and thousands of Canadian Anglicans have donated more than $56,000 through the Silent Night Project, a collective video initiative in fall 2010.
Eighty regular and reserve Anglican chaplains serve in the Canadian Forces. They are led by a Bishop Ordinary, currently Peter Coffin, and they serve the military community at large, as well as the 20,000 Anglicans in the forces, collectively known as the Anglican Military Ordinariate (AMO).
"We would like to say thank you very much for thinking of us and supporting us," said Bishop Ordinary Peter Coffin. "These chaplains have all come from different dioceses and they find it very, very encouraging to know that they are remembered and appreciated by their church for what they do,"
Mr. Goldring's donation was part of a $1.5 million gift through the Diocese of Toronto. Mr. Goldring is an honorary colonel and a parishioner at St. Clement's Anglican Church in Toronto, Ont.
The Silent Night Project was a cross-Canada video event where thousands of Anglicans filmed their communities singing "Silent Night" then sent the videos in for a Christmas documentary. Singers also donated toonies to support Anglican military chaplains.
Funds will support bishop's ministry
All donations will support the bishop's ministry through the Bishop Ordinary Trust, which is managed by the Anglican Foundation. Currently this ministry is supported by General Synod and donations from Anglican chaplains, but the AMO leadership seeks a more independent model that will allow the ministry to grow. They aim for an endowment of $2 million that will cover the bishop's stipend, lay staff support, and some travel.
The Bishop Ordinary is a vital means for Anglican chaplains to stay connected to the larger church as they minister in different places. Chaplains may be holding services for troops in Haiti, helping train new medics, or working alongside soldiers as they sandbag before Manitoba floods.
The bishop communicates among the chaplains and the various levels of the church. He also visits with chaplains and encourages them in their day-to-day work.
"The bishop becomes for us a kind of point of unity," said Col. the Rev. Canon John Fletcher, archdeacon of the AMO. "It's the bishop who links us to the larger family of the Anglican Church of Canada and then to the Anglican Communion."
Bishop cares for caregivers
The bishop's pastoral ministry also helps support chaplains as they support others.
For Mr. Fletcher, the Bishop Ordinary was crucial in helping him discern his call to military chaplaincy. He was going through a difficult time while working in Halifax and the bishop travelled out from Ottawa to pray and visit for several days.
Major the Rev. Michelle Staples, an Anglican chaplain based in Edmonton, also received an unexpected visit from the bishop ordinary. Several years ago she was in Afghanistan at Christmas, struggling with feelings of loneliness. Somehow the bishop tracked her down and surprised her with a visit when she needed it most.
For Ms. Staples, this memory links strongly to the feeling she had with the Silent Night Project. The project happened during a very busy period in her life. She was absorbed with local operations and her husband was deployed overseas.
"When I saw the Silent Night Project video, I felt that the church continues to reach out and wrap me in something bigger than me," said Ms. Staples. "For me, the Bishop Ordinary is a symbol of the church's care."
Mr. Fletcher agrees that these donations and gestures of support help connect members of the church.
"We may work in a different place than most folks are familiar with, but the ministry Anglican chaplains exercise is a ministry of the Anglican Church of Canada," he said. "We're so grateful for the support of our primate, clergy, and laity across the church for their prayers and generous support."
You may well be among the nearly 33 million people who have viewed the video of the Hallelujah chorus flashmob. This one, an Easter celebration flashmob of Arab Christians, comes from a shopping mall in Beirut. http://the-hermeneutic-of-continuity.blogspot.com/2011/05/arab-christian-flashmob-in-beirut.html
The US evangelist who said the world would end on 21 May was standing by his prediction, while the Anglican Bishop of Buckingham told the UK's Channel 4 News that Saint Paul would have said "don't be silly".
Watch the interview here http://www.channel4.com/news/world-fails-to-end
PUBLICATION OF THE WEEK
New research reveals renewed child detention fears
From The Children's Society website
On the day (11 May 2011) that the [British] government has promised to end the immigration detention of children, new research published by The Children's Society warns of the on-going dangers of detaining children.
It is critical that lessons are learnt from the past and applied to the new detention arrangements in pre-departure accommodation, so that the welfare of children is paramount, The Children’s Society report says.
‘What Have I Done? The experiences of children and families in UK immigration detention’, examines the experiences of 32 families detained prior to the coalition’s pledge, in May 2010, to end the immigration detention of children.
The research emphasises the importance of safeguarding issues around the use of immigration detention and the impact on children’s physical and emotional health.
Some of the most shocking experiences, and those that the government should be most keen to avoid in future, include:
- Children witnessing traumatic events, including hunger strikes and suicide attempts and the use of restraint on their parents.
- High levels of stress, fear, confusion, and feelings of hopelessness and degradation experienced by family members in detention.
- Many children did not eat, or lost weight, during detention. Families had medication removed upon arrival or missed important medical appointments as a consequence of detention. One child was detained for a second time despite suffering from post traumatic stress disorder after her first detention.
- The majority of children experienced emotional distress during detention, including sleeplessness, nightmares and constant crying.
- After release from detention, the majority of families experienced on-going and persistent effects on their mental and emotional health.
The Children's Society is concerned that the UK Border Agency’s new pre-departure accommodation could replicate some of these experiences. Families can still be held for up to a week in ‘exceptional circumstances’. Questions about the potential impact on children of separating families during the returns process also remain.
Recommendations in the report include:
- There should be no attempts to split families in order to detain parents without their children.
- For those families who will be held in pre-departure accommodation, the health and welfare of children should be monitored and the risks of harm carefully managed.
- Asylum seekers should receive good quality legal advice earlier on in the process.
- Children’s views should be taken into account on all issues that affect them.
The Children's Society’s Chief Executive, Bob Reitemeier, said: 'The Children's Society is delighted that children will no longer be detained in Yarl’s Wood for long periods of time. The government has made progress so far by reducing the numbers of children detained and the length of detention since the pledge was made in May 2010.
'It remains to be seen how exactly the new arrangements will be used. We will be paying particular attention to whether detention in pre-departure accommodation will be used as a genuine last resort, for the shortest time possible, and in the most exceptional cases. It is not yet clear if it will be just another form of detention that harms children.
'It is critical that lessons are learnt from the past and that the needs and welfare of children in the asylum system are at the heart of the process.'
Both a summary of the research and the full report are available to download.
[Editor's note: Founded in 1881 by a Sunday school teacher, The Children's Society partnership with the Church is of central importance. Its current Chair of Trustees is the Bishop of Truro, Bishop Tim Thornton, and it works closely with the archbishops of Canterbury and York, who are Presidents of The Children's Society. It also works with bishops and senior clergy across the country. Our partnership working extends to Church of England schools and to the networks of children's work advisors and youth officers.]
Prayer – Does it make a difference?
By Philip Yancey
Review from Diocese of Malaysia Barat Anglican Messenger magazine
This book has been described as ‘the most powerful book’ since “What’s so Amazing about Grace?” and “The Jesus I Never Knew”. Philip Yancey probes our relationship with God in a very simple yet challenging and deeply rewarding way.
One of the most significant thinkers of our time, Yancey explores the many questions surrounding prayer. From dealing with prayer as our deepest longing and what it does for the individual, to looking at Jesus as the model in prayer and how it is a partnership with the Almighty. Yancey goes on to clarify how prayer makes a difference. He says “True prayer comes
from within, from the longing of the heart”.
He goes on to point out that the main requirement in prayer is honesty. Then, he says, we will not be ‘tongue-tied’ when asked to pray. This is a wonderful exposition and a relevant and compelling book on our daily walk with the Lord. Each chapter has true to life stories to reach and encourage the reader. So read it and be blessed.
Ask Me About Me
From The Children's Society
Description 'Ask Me About Me' is a DVD resource designed for awareness-raising and training on the impact of a parent's drug or alcohol misuse on children.
It is a 'toolbox' of 8 films of varying length and design that can be used with a broad range of audiences. It features raw material from nine children and young people talking directly about their experiences of parental substance misuse. A training booklet is included.
Visit the website here for more information
ARTS & HERITAGE
[Editor's note: The nice people at London's National Gallery sent ACNS this information about their latest exhibition. One never knows the interests (nor the travel schedules) of Weekly Review readers so I thought I'd include it in our occasional Arts & Heritage section. The National Gallery houses the national collection of Western European painting from the 13th to the 19th centuries. It is on show 361 days a year, free of charge.]
Devotion by Design - Italian alterpieces before 1500
6 July – 2 October 2011
Sainsbury Wing, The National Gallery
Altarpiece: An image-bearing structure placed upon or behind an altar in a Christian church. Usually forms the focus of devotion for worshippers and is normally decorated by painters and/or sculptors. Altarpieces can vary considerably in size and in complexity of construction, ranging from simple dossals (a horizontal panel or cloth either fronting or set at the back of an altar) to huge polyptychs (a painting divided into multiple sections or panels). They are decorated with a range of imagery which often reflects the circumstances of their original commission and location.
As part of a new series of summer exhibitions drawn from the National Gallery’s permanent collection, Devotion by Design focuses on Italian altarpieces ranging from the 13th century to the end of the 15th century. This exhibition of over 40 works will investigate the original functions and locations, as well as formal, stylistic and typological developments of altarpieces, drawing on the wealth of scientific examination and scholarly study undertaken in this field over the past 30 years.
For information visit http://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/whats-on/exhibitions/devotion-by-design
ANGLICAN CYCLE OF PRAYER Click here for the full ACP
Psalm: 106:13-23 Exod. 19:1-9
Northern Malawi - (Central Africa) The Rt Revd Fanuel Emmanuel Magangani
Psalm: 106:24-33 Exod. 19:10-15
Northern Mexico - (Mexico) The Rt Revd Marcelino Rivera-Delgado
Psalm: 18:20-24 Rev. 6:7-11
Northern Philippines - (Philippines) The Rt Revd Brent W Alawas
Southern Philippines - (Philippines) The Rt Revd Danilo Bustamante
Tuesday 31-May-2011 The Visit of the Blessed Virgin Mary to Elizabeth
Psalm: 18:25-36 Rev. 6:12-17
Northern Territory, The - (Queensland, Australia) The Rt Revd Gregory Edwin Thompson
Psalm: 89:1-8 Exod. 20:1-21
Northern Uganda - (Uganda) The Rt Revd Nelson Onono-Onweng
Thursday 02-Jun-2011 Ascension Day
Psalm: 8 II Kgs 2:1-15
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Disclaimer: The Weekly Review is a summary of news, information and resources gathered from around the Anglican Communion over the past week. The views expressed in Weekly Review do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of the Anglican Communion Office.