The Diocese of Athabasca Synod declares itself in Communion with ANiC and the Southern Cone

This is big news, folks. Not only is the Most Rev. John R. Clarke the Bishop of Athabasca, he is also the Archbishop of Rupert’s land. The Anglican realignment is in full swing! –Ed.

The Synod of the Diocese of Athabasca Affirms the Solemn Declaration of 1893 (the founding declaration of the Anglican Church of Canada)

Resolution # 2008-16 – BE IT RESOLVED that the Diocese of Athabasca reaffirm and uphold its foundational theology as expressed in The Solemn Declaration of 1893 as complete and accurate in every part, and consequently,

* That this synod repudiates those actions of the Anglican Church of Canada and its constituent parts which are contrary to the Solemn Declaration in any way;
* That this synod affirms and encourages the stand of those who have declared a like understanding of Anglican theology as expressed in the Solemn Declaration;
* That this synod directs the Secretary of Synod to memorialize Council of General Synod of this motion.

The Synod of the Diocese of Athabasca is in communion with the ANiC and the Province of the Southern Cone.

Resolution # 2008-11 – BE IT RESOLVED that the Synod of the Diocese of Athabasca inform the parishes and the bishops who have joined the Anglican Network in Canada and the Province of the Southern Cone that we are in full communion with them.

The Synod of the Diocese of Athabasca expresses it’s displeasure with bishops from other dioceses (for taking ANIC to court)

Resolution # 2008-12 – BE IT RESOLVED that the Synod of the Diocese of Athabasca express its dismay that bishops of dioceses have resorted to secular courts when parishes within those dioceses have found it necessary to align themselves with the Anglican Network in Canada and the Province of the Southern Cone.

Some important motions regarding abortion also passed. See more at:

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0 Responses to The Diocese of Athabasca Synod declares itself in Communion with ANiC and the Southern Cone

  1. The Bentleys says:

    What an answer to prayer. We just had Abp Venables preach this morning from the Bible. A clear, uncomplicated, firm and loving gospel message. Athabasca (and maybe Rupertsland?) you won’t regret this decision.

  2. Ann Varcoe says:

    This is absolutely wonderful news, as more and more faithful Anglicans choose to stand with us, we are humbled and grateful to them and to God for courage such as this. To God be the glory!

  3. Ellie M. says:

    The timing is certainly interesting. . .

  4. Jim Muirhead says:

    Praise God. The community of the faithful is waking.

  5. Gerry O'Brien says:

    This is wonderful news for ANiC and a blow to the ACoC. Let’s just pray that some other Dioceses will take the lead of the Diocese of Athabaska…..Perhaps the others in Rupert’s Land will see the wisdom of what has been done……

    Let’s pray that some others across Canada will see the wisdom of not having inclusiveness and not diluting the Gospel and not categorizing Jesus Christ as just ‘one way’ to Heaven rather than
    “The ONLY WAY” to Heaven.

    Let’s pray that this evil teaching, apostasy that has infiltrated the ACoC will cease. Until such time as the ACoC confesses, repents and turns away from this road they are on, then ANiC must continue not bend from their path, the narrow path……

    Blessings be bestowed upon Athabasca and on ANiC.

  6. Cathy says:

    Does this meen that the next time there is a House of Bishops meeting or General Synod etc that Athabasa will not attend but that they will sent representatives to the ANiC Synod in the fall?

  7. Liz says:

    God bless our Metropolitan Archbishop and all the clergy and people of Athabasca! I am reduced to tears of joy!

  8. James Christman says:

    Splitting the church is not good news as others has posted here. I may not agree with everything the church does but I believe in the greater good. What is next for the Anglican Network – Banning women priests? Not allowing communion until after confirmation? The Anglican Network is heading toward Catholicism not Anglicanism.

  9. Steve L says:

    I can see Bishop Jim (Brandon) and his minions pacing his little upstairs office. Can’t call your Metropolitan a bully as easily as you did the rest of us. I predict it will be ostrich appreciation day in many diocesan offices this week. Sgt Schultz is alive and well “I see nothing, nothing!”

    Quick note, I flipped over to the Diocese of Brandon Web News and it has a link to the Essentials Conference report. But nothing on Athabasca, yet! After the treatment we have received in this diocese I’m surprised to see the link. But we pray for the truth, sometimes it shines through the cracks.

  10. Liz says:

    James – Agreed the splitting of the church is not good news. But upholding the Solemn Declaration that founded this church is. I do not see the ANiC as the ones doing the splitting and ask again…
    Who moved? I doubt very much that we need be in fear of the ANiC banning women clergy or holding off giving the Eucharist to children until after confirmation and suggest these are red herrings that have nothing to do with the truth.

  11. Stephen says:

    Thank you very much Most Rev. John R. Clarke!

  12. Kate says:

    Um, James – Have you noticed the number of low church evangelical clergy there are in our leadership ranks? They get along just fine with the high church folk too, thank you very much. Liz is right on.

  13. ML says:

    #8 There is nothing in the motions that indicates that Athabasca has split from the ACC. But they are sending a very clear message. Hope it doesn’t end up as fence sitting with one foot in each camp, but rather pulls the ACC back from the brink now that one diocese is finally making its stand public. Who is next?

  14. Tom says:

    James – I would encourage you to find out what are the issues as there is ton of material going back to Essentials 1994 . It is not about a move to Catholicism. It was wonderful to see the all the Clergy together at the Vancouver ANiC conference – terrific worship all weekend. God bless Athabasca !

  15. The Rev. Frank Wilson says:

    Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

  16. Warren says:

    James (#10), it would be a real hoot to link you up with some of the Anglo Catholics I’ve had opportunity to engage in conversation with on this blog over the past few months. Talk about opposite views of reality!

    And good on the Diocese of Athabasca.

  17. Sharon says:

    I asked for clarification on this issue and was told that “full communion” means that the network clergy and Bishops are welcome to come into our diocese as long as the usual protocols have been observed. (The usual protocol is that you get the permission of the Diocesan Bishop.)
    Athabasca is still part of the ACoC.
    As far as I know the Diocese of Athabsaca will not be sending representatives to the ANiC synod, our bishop still intends to attend the house of Bishop’s meetings, and as we elected delegates to General synod I’m presuming we will still be attending General synod.

  18. Ann Varcoe says:

    God’s timeing is so perfect – for ANIC to officially launch and then for this faithful diocese to put forward such motions to be “in Communion” shows that their is an order to things. Some of us have been accused of “jumping the gun” (by leaving). I believe that a step out had to occur before all things could begin to fall into place. It takes action to get reaction. Personally I find this very confirming and authenticating! Thank you God again for your faithful people, both those called to leave and those called to stand within (in my opinion they are truly brave)

  19. Grant LeMarquand says:

    Dear folks,
    There seems to be a fair bit of happiness and glee at this news. Certainly upholding the Solemn Declaration is important, but I see no real substance to this motion. It is a bit like the old Rodney King line “why can’t we all just get along.” The Bishop of Athabasca has been critical of the Essentials Movement, although he is good friends, I understand, with the former bishop of Brandon, who is a wonderful godly man. Don’t read relaignment into the Athabasca vote!
    Grant LeMarquand

  20. Kate says:

    Perhaps not, but it at least is an example of an ACoC bishop willing to stand up for orthodoxy, and that is exciting.

  21. Gerry O'Brien says:

    21 Grant LeMarquand
    but I see no real substance to this motion. It is a bit like the old Rodney King line “why can’t we all just get along.”

    Hi Grant: two points made by you here in this very brief line…
    1) “No real substance to this motion” – Certainly appears to have substance to me. Certainly more substance than the ArchBishop of Toronto saying that there is no problems in the ACoC.

    2) “Why can’t we all just get along.” – The same old, same old!
    This is the liberal line of all liberal lines…..We must just all get along!
    Grant, I am asking you to explain to me how we can “all just get along” when the canyon between The ACoC and ANiC is growing deeper and wider all the time. ANiC didn’t start the trenching although they are being called the schismatics (liberal untruth).
    We can “love” the liberals but that does not mean we must agree with them…When we don’t agree with them then they cry foul and get all upset and start casting blame. Sorry Grant, it is very difficult in these days for all of us to “just get along”…….GAFCON

  22. Michael Li says:

    Certainly we can agree to disagree in our church. Let us thank God for the motions passed by the recent Synod of the Diocese of Athabasca!

  23. Jonathan says:

    It’s a dangerous thing, I think, to read motions that were passed by other groups of people and to assume that we know what they mean (there is, clearly, some discrepancy as to what these motions amount to for Athabasca). In my first reading, I admit that I thought that they suggested that Athabasca was declaring itself out of communion with the ACoC. On my second reading, however, it seemed clear that it had stopped short of saying this – and that the other motions passed at its synod strongly suggested that it intended to remain a part of the ACoC. What it did say, however, was that it considered itself in full communion with the ANiC – which, by roundabout routes (through Canterbury), it would seem to be (even if it hadn’t been openly stated). The ACoC is still in communion with Canterbury, as it the Southern Cone – and so the ANiC being under the Southern Cone is still in communion with the ACoC, though not directly. The motion seems to openly state this relationship.
    Interestingly, to my mind, what it says, that seems to be ‘new,’ is that the Diocese of Athabasca is open to the new kind of Anglican Communion that is forming, which is not based upon geographical boundaries (which Archbishop Venables’ has spoken about). I could be wrong on this (I was wrong on my reading of it twice before, I think), but that’s where I’m at right now.

  24. Rev says:

    I see these motions as a reflection of the frustration that is becoming more and more evident in our churches. This is a more than gentle tap on the shoulder of the Captain of the ‘good’ ship ACoC Titanic (see Gene’s cartoon) to tell him that the passengers and crew are not comfortable with the direction he’s steering and will make their own minds up about such things … and a more than cursory glance at the lifeboats.
    There are many more individuals and congregations who would want to make the same point to the worldwide communion; ‘please do not tar us with the same ACoC brush!!!’ Is it feasible to ask the Essentials leadership to come up with a mechanism whereby such individuals and parishes could declare their continuing communion with ANiC and the rest of the orthodox Anglican world? Should we send you a copy of similar motions to those of Athabasca from our AGM’s, or what?
    Read the motions in the light of the comment from a later post:
    “The ANiC congregations constitute less than one per cent of the 2,800 parishes in the Canadian church.” (Anne Fletcher) Yup, you might be right …. but what about percentage of worshipping members (wasn’t there a comment about that a while ago)?
    Ms Fletcher, if you are naive enough to believe that dissatisfaction is confined to those who have gone the way of ANiC there’s a problem. If however you are aware that there is a greater problem and seek to minimalize it with such a comment, shame on you!
    I hope the Athabasca stand will not be the only one. It would be interesting to see other Dioceses have a similar vote, they may not all pass but the numbers in favour will add up across the country.

  25. Steve L says:

    Jonathan #25
    Theoretically ANiC is in Communion with the ACoC through the association with Southern Cone.

    However it is quite clear from the ACoC that ANiC priests are not not validly ordained and the worship is being held illegally in ‘stolen’ ACoC properties. Looks good on paper but Hiltz’s letter to ++Greg before the conference showed the true Christian nature of the ACoC leadership.

  26. Kate says:

    Individuals can join ANiC and Federation. If you take a look at the main website you’ll find membership applications.

  27. Ann Varcoe says:

    I agree that many will find different ways to interpret these motions, for me personally, I see them as a huge encouragement that a large group of people have stood together and said “hey (ACoC) you are not treating our brothers and sisters (ANiC) with Christian love and we want to say publicly that we disagree with you and that they are important part of our lives and relationships. It may sound simple to some, but when as a person you feel that certain people you respected and admired have treated you as a type of infectious disease, its very humbling to see this gesture of human grace.

  28. Rev says:

    Thank you Kate, I am already an Essentials member, although I’ve never really been able to cope with the split into the two camps.
    My question is; whether or not simple membership in Essentials is recognized by those with whom we wish to remain in communion elsewhere in the world as a sufficient way of distancing oneself from the ‘revisionist’ direction of the ACoC?
    Example: Assuming the AcoC continues on its present course and ends up ‘out of communion’ with an area such as the West Indies under ++Gomez. If I went to visit friends in the W.I., and offered to help them in their multi point parish, would being a member of Essentials be sufficient credentials?
    If that is the case then maybe the profile of Essentials might be raised to advertise that fact, or other suggestions made.

  29. Peter says:

    It would be better if it wasn’t so, eh ‘Rev’ ? However it’s hard to avoid particularly now when ANiC has formally seperated from ACoC. I think that it’ll all come out in the wash eventually though. Either Fed will see the writing on the wall, or ANiC will no longer be necessary. In the meantime, we can certainly maintain fellowship amongst ourselves.

  30. Kate says:

    Rev, I don’t have an answer to your question. I would suggest getting in touch with +Don or +Malcolm, or better yet, the bishop of the place you will be visiting, and ask.

  31. Rev says:

    Kate, obviously, in the particular, one would be in contact with the local bishop beforehand. I was actually thinking on a more general scale about how one, or one’s congregation, would ‘register’ with the wider church. So my earlier question still stands.

  32. Asher says:

    This blog is simply an exercise in group (deleted for obscenity – ed)

  33. Warren says:

    And you’ve joined the group at the This is a hyperlink“>very lowest level. Perhaps you’ll work your way up with time and maturity.

  34. Warren says:

    I guess I need to brush up on my html tags. Click on “This is a hyperlink” in #35.

  35. Warren says:

    I messed that up well. Back to basics:

  36. John B. Cameron says:

    I am very pleased to see the Diocese of Athabasca declare itself in communion with the Anglican Network in Canada and that of the Southern Cone. I would like to see the the Diocese of Niagara and its bishop do the same and for the same reasons rather than resort to Civil Court. I have no trouble with court if that is the way Niagara and its bishop wish to go, so be it. This statement goes for the other diocese and bishops who are in conflict with their parishes and lay people. Lay people who pay the freight must stand up to the bishops, who do not stand up for the truth as expressed in the Solemn Declaration and make them accountable for what they say and do. This is of utmost importance in this time of realingement and or split. It is not unity at any cost; it would be compromise.

    I would like to see another motion passed by the Diocese of Athabasca declaring itself a Network Diocese and that it is not in communion with the Anglican Church of Canada other through the association of the Southern Cone and its Primate.
    In this cisis, one must be concise. Either you are in or you are out.
    This would make it easier for all concerned.

  37. Gerry O'Brien says:

    #38 John B. Cameron

    Well said John, if they can’t understand your words, time to go back to grade four.

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