Except for a few technical glitches, the business of Synod went well this May. It seems that the underlying theme of synod was more about how online meetings compare to face-to-face meetings, and this idea was extended to the way we now do church.
In her address to Synod, Primate, Linda Nichols spoke about the new ‘Hybrid Church Model.’ Due to the corona virus pandemic, “change has been thrust upon us,” she said. She also encouraged us to ‘Be Surprised by the Spirit’; see https://www.anglican.ca/news/be-surprised-by-the-spirit/30033680/
Almost overnight we have had to change as a church. There are good things and difficult things about that. One of the difficult things is still in the process of being evaluated. It mainly involves the receiving of Eucharist: can online Eucharists be given virtually, and can they be considered to be spiritual Eucharists?
For me and the job I have to perform, I would say that the business side of Synod went well. However, it was the networking side that was sadly missing.
Synod is a time for me to make contact with prospective writers, and encourage people to submit photographs of their church events. In addition, making sure everyone who wants to receive a copy of The HighWay has a subscription.
It is through chance encounters that this is done. It is a bit like a politician making the rounds and shaking hands with as many people as they can. One might wonder how many people can be contacted in this way and if it makes a difference? My answer to that is: it certainly does!
There is a definitive difference between online church and face-to-face church; or as one of the synod delegates remarked between ‘digital’ and ‘analog’ church.
One of the resolutions, “having yearly synods,” was put in motion due to the possibilities afforded by Zoom. In the past synod in-between years was accomplished by the diocesan council on our behalf. Being a large diocese, spread out between several mountain ranges, communication between the Synod Office and the local church can now happen inexpensively online.
This edition of The HighWay was produced by taking a number of screen shots; but screen shots will never replace the quality of a good photograph.
At the time of publication, we did not have all the names associated with all the acts of creation that took place on May 14 for ‘A Sacred Day of Creation,’ found on page 5. And, unfortunately, not all photographs of those creative works could be included in The HighWay; however, a slide show made by Karen Archibald for the Spiritual Development Committee should be available on the diocesan website.
Moving to another topic, The HighWay has produced a YouTube video which was created for Synod: https://youtu.be/4YlOXJnklzM. By making this video, it became apparent that we need local parish reporters. That is, we need dedicated people writing about what is happening at your local level. If you or your group has done something you would like to share with others, please send it along to us, along with a high resolution photograph and information about who did what, when, and where. Then email it to [email protected].