Diocese of Montreal: two canons resign from Cathedral Chapter

From the Montreal Anglican (page 3):

Two priests have resigned from the honorary post of canon of the Chapter of Christ Church Cathedral, at least one of them because of disagreement with the appointment a gay man with a partner as the new rector of the cathedral and dean of Montreal. Rev. Paul Kennington, previously of St. Mary’s Battersea in southwest London, was inducted January 9, succeeding Dean Michael Pitts.

Bishop Barry Clarke told the March meeting of the Montreal Diocesan Council that Rev. George Sandilands, a retired priest of the diocese, and Rev. Nick Brotherwood, whom the bishop had just appointed incumbent of St Stephen’s, Westmount, had resigned from the Cathedral Chapter and should no longer be styled as canons.”

The bishop did not elaborate and George Sandilands also declined to do so. The priest, who was diocesan comptroller for six years ending in 1987, also served parishes in LaSalle and Bedfore before that and St. Matthew’s Hampstead later. He now lives near Barrie and assists at Trinity Church in that Ontario city. “I gave my reasons to the bishop when I resigned. I don’t think I should say any more than that,” he said in a telephone conversation.

Nick Brotherwood sent a reply to an email query from The Montreal Anglican: “Sadly, I find myself unable to support the Bishop’s appointment of a gay, partnered, man to the Cathedral,as I believe this action to be against Scripture, against the belief and practice of the Church Catholic, as well as being against the spirit of the request of the last Lambeth Conference for a moratorium. “I have greatly appreciated the honour Bishop Barry and the former Dean paid me in 2006 by naming me as a Canon of the Cathedral, but as a consequence of my inability to support the new Dean, I found it would be inconsistent of me, (as well as lacking in integrity,) to continue to function as a Canon of the Cathedral, and so with much regret I returned my scarf and hood on January 5th 2011. This action was in no way intended as a slight; simply, I believed it to be a logical following through of my decision of conscience.”

Bishop Clarke also told the Diocesan Council that a retired priest of the Montreal Diocese and a priest formerly in the diocese have left the Anglican Church of Canada to join the breakaway Anglican Network in Canada. One is Rev. James Bennett, who now lives in the rural community of Coldwater, near Orillia, and was at one time rector of St Augustine’s in Pointe Claire. (He is a different person from Archdeacon James Bennett of St. Paul’s Côte des Neiges.) Bishop Clarke noted informally that Rev. Robin Guinness, a former priest of the Diocese of Montreal, has left the Anglican Diocese of Toronto to join ANiC. In Montreal, Robin Guinness was particularly known for his work in revitalizing St. Stephen’s Church in Westmount.

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