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Ecumenical covenant thriving and expanding

By Frank Flegel

06/14/2017

REGINA — The 2011 covenant signed between the Regina Roman Catholic archdiocese and the Anglican Diocese of Qu’Appelle appears to be thriving and expanding.

A report presented by covenant co-chair Susan Klein at a June 4 ecumenical Pentecost vespers service gave a few examples of how the two faith traditions are co-operating and worshipping together.

While the initial covenant was between the Archdiocese of Regina and the Diocese of Qu’Appelle, several activities in 2016 and 2017 included Lutheran participants.

A prayer service in Moosomin between St. Alban’s Anglican and St. Mary’s Roman Catholic continued the practice of praying together that began in 2011, the year the covenant was signed. St Mary’s Anglican Church in Regina held compline (night prayers) every Friday evening during Advent with a group of Anglicans, Roman Catholics and Lutherans who met at a 2015 chant workshop.

Evangelical Lutheran Bishop Sid Haugan of British Columbia was the preacher at a solemn eucharistic service held Jan. 29, 2017 at St. Paul’s Cathedral commemorating the conversion of St. Paul and the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. A delegation from Holy Rosary Cathedral led by Deacon Barry Wood attended the service.

Parishioners of Immaculate Conception Roman Catholic Church in Qu’Appelle attended mass at St. Peter’s Anglican Church while their church underwent extensive repairs. A schedule of services accommodated both congregations. The co-operation of the churches was approved by both bishops.

A study evening about the place of Mary in the Anglican and Roman Catholic traditions was held May 15 at St. Mary’s Anglican Church in Regina. Susan Klein’s report opened the service held at Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church.

Homilist Michael Sinclair, Dean of St. Paul’s Cathedral, spoke about Pentecost and how the Lord’s ruach — breathe of life — came upon the apostles to heal a broken world. “God said, ‘I’m doing something new.’ That work that God is doing, the ongoing work of creation, never ends. It is always in our midst. The work of the Holy Spirit, the work of Pentecost, continues,” said Sinclair.

Anglican Bishop Robert Hardwick and Archbishop Donald Bolen both spoke in glowing terms about the covenant and how it is being observed in other areas. “Something extraordinary is happening here,” said Bolen.

Bolen’s presence was noted in Klein’s report as the principal architect of the covenant. Bolen, Bishop Robert Hardwick, and deacons from both faith traditions participated in the service. A reception in the church hall followed.

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