Anglican priest wears a hijab

Rev. Cheryl Toth from the Anglican Diocese of Qu’Appelle wore a hijab for a day to “see what it’s like” and because she is unhappy that hostility towards women who wear a hijab, niqab or burka is increasing. And, of course, “to contribute to the conversation” – it wouldn’t be Anglican without that.

She didn’t go for the full cover-up of a burka, presumably because in a burka, no one would have any idea that she was a lady Anglican priest declaring “look at me, aren’t I progressive”, rather than an actual Muslim. That wouldn’t have been much of a publicity stunt.

Here she is:

And here are thousands of women protesting against being forced to wear a hijab in Iran in March 1979. I know which spectacle find more convincing:

Iran protest

From here:

Anglican priest Cheryl Toth decided to wear a hijab for a day to see what the experience is like. (Submitted by Cheryl Toth)

Concerned with what she calls the “increasing rhetoric about the wearing of the niqab by Muslim women,” an Anglican priest in Regina decided to take matters into her own hands. She wore a hijab for a day to see what’s [sic] like.

In a post on Facebook, Cheryl Toth said she’s “uncomfortable with the way the debate focuses on what women wear (or decide not to wear). I am afraid that [the rhetoric] will increase hostility towards women who choose to wear a hijab, a niqab or a burka.”

She said she sees her trial run with the hijab as a way “to contribute to the conversation.”

Discipline is on the agenda of the Primates’ meeting

David Virtue is reporting that both TEC and the ACoC are to be disciplined at the Primates’ meeting in January.

There are ACoC clergy that have a keen interest in discipline, but only if it is accompanied by bondage.

From VOL:

The discipline of The Episcopal Church (and presumably the Anglican Church of Canada) will be the first item on the agenda when the Primates of the Anglican Communion meet in Canterbury in January, VOL has learned.

If TEC and the ACoC are disciplined for their departure from the faith and do not leave the meeting, the Global South Primates will not be likely to stay, VOL was told.

If they are disciplined, repent and do the right thing and leave, the Global South archbishops will stay on, said the source.

A report by the Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Canada Fred Hiltz that ACNA Archbishop Foley Beach had only been invited for one day before the formal meeting gets under way — “as an opportunity for some conversation, in the ultimate hope that we might be able to find a way forward towards reconciliation,” is simply inaccurate. Hiltz described this as “a good thing.”

But VOL was told that this interpretation by Hiltz about what he thinks will transpire in Canterbury is simply not true and avoids the facts. Archbishop Beach will only come if the Global South archbishops come and they will only appear if Beach is invited and the issue of the North American departure from Scripture is the centerpiece of the discussion.

“The central issue of this meeting will be the theological innovations of The Episcopal Church and not climate change,” VOL was told.

Swedish bishop wants to remove the cross from her church

As St. Paul noted in Gal 5:11, If I were no longer preaching salvation through the cross of Christ, no one would be offended; the last thing the church wants to do is offend anyone, particularly Muslims. Bishop Eva Brunne has the solution: remove the cross along with other Christian symbols from the Seamen’s Church in Stockholm.
Presumably, her next move will be to remove Christianity itself from the church; perhaps she has already done that.

Eva Brunne is the bishop of Stockholm in the Church of Sweden. Before deciding to remove the cross from the church, her main claim to notoriety was to be the first openly lesbian bishop of a mainstream church. It’s significant that such things tend to go together.

From here:

EvaBishop Eva Brunne wants to remove Christian symbols from the Seamen’s Church in Stockholm, and instead create a prayer room for Muslims, SVT reports.

The bishop wants to temporarily make the Seamen’s Church available to all, for example by marking the direction of Mecca and remove Christian symbols, which is already done in common prayer rooms at airports and in some hospital chapels.

“Leasing a room to people of other faiths, does not mean that we are not defenders of our own faith. Priests are called to proclaim Christ. We do that every day and in every meeting with people. But that does not mean that we are hostile toward people of other faiths, “writes Bishop Eva Brune at Stockholm municipality’s website.

Diocese of Niagara to have Justice Camp in Cuba

The Anglican equivalent of Saudi Arabia heading a UN human rights panel is locating a Justice Camp in one of the least just countries in the world outside of North Korea: Cuba. Perhaps the incentive was a promise of free cigars.

From here (page 10):

The first-ever international Justice Camp will bring together a diverse group of Anglicans in Cuba from May 1-6, 2016, to explore the concept of the common good with an eye towards furthering God’s justice and loving purposes.

Anglican priest and imam officiate at a wedding

More inclusion from the Anglican Church of Canada: Rev. Dwayne Bos and Imam Suleyman Demiray officiated at a wedding between a Christian and a Muslim. Apparently, the precedent for this was set some time ago when the Church married a Christian to a Wiccan. The Anglican Church of Canada is easing its way into Chrislam via Wicca, a belief system which already strongly resembles that of the ACoC.

The imam recited a passage from the Al-Fatiha in the Quran, not to be confused with the Quran 8:12 passage which invites Mohammed’s followers to behead the infidel – a bit of a downer just before the honeymoon.

Read all about it here:

History was made this summer at Canadian Forces Base Borden, Ont., with a unique interfaith wedding, the officiating clerics say.

On August 29, Capt. Georgette Mink, a physiotherapist in the Canadian military, was married to Ahmad Osman, a soldier in the Lebanese army. Although technically a Christian marriage, it was attended by representatives from both the Christian and Muslim religions, and was followed by a Muslim blessing of the couple.

Capt. the Rev. Dwayne Bos, the Anglican padre who officiated, said he believes other weddings may have been done in the Canadian military involving Christians and non-Christians—he has heard of some involving one Wiccan partner, for example. But the fact that clerics from both faith traditions co-performed the liturgy made this one unique, he said.

“From what we understand and know, this would be the first one of this type that’s ever been done in the Canadian Forces,” he said.

Bishop Michael Bird spent over $1 million suing ANiC parishes

I had not seen the cost to the Diocese of Niagara of its litigation until this article about Bird appeared in the Anglican Journal. I imagine the diocese views it as money well spent since the sale and demolishing of St. Hilda’s church and rectory alone netted them $2.6 million; and who cares about 1 Corinthians 6:1 when what really counts is at stake?

“Just prior to my becoming bishop, three parishes voted to walk away from the diocese of Niagara,” Bird said in an interview with the Anglican Journal. “There was a subsequent fourth one some months after…that.” What he needed to do, he said, was to draw “a good group of people around the episcopal office.”

Protracted and sometimes rancorous legal battles over the ownership of properties followed. The costs of these battles—which Bird said ran upwards of $1 million—were compounded by the recession of 2008, which drove the diocese into serious financial difficulties.

The Diocese of Huron hates fossil fuels

Cheap energy produced by fossil fuels has given us better medicines, cleaner water, warmer homes, cheaper and more plentiful food, more leisure time and a longer lifespan. It also provided the means of producing the clothes and glasses the young ladies below are wearing, the sign that they are holding and the dentistry that permits them to display their toothy grins with such aplomb.

The Diocese of Huron wants to divest from fossil fuels; Canon Linda Nixon from that diocese is the one on the left brandishing the sign.


The sign isn’t completely inaccurate: if she had her way it certainly would endanger our grandchildren.

The Diocese of Niagara continues to endear itself to the community

The Diocese of Niagara Living the Vision in Guelph.

From here:

Last Saturday’s feature on the Ethiopian congregation in Breslau was heartwarming.

Not only did the Eastern Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church consider fellow Christians seeking worship space as worthy purchasers, they actually donated the church that they no longer use to a congregation without a place to call home.

What generosity of spirit, what kindness and forethought, what admirable consideration for the entire community.

Such selfless motivation is sorely lacking in the saga of the former St. Matthias Church property in Guelph, which is owned by the Anglican Diocese of Niagara. In this case, the diocese outright refused a $1.2-million purchase offer from a local congregation for the redundant Anglican Church at Kortright and Edinburgh roads. Rather, they continue to favour a bidder who proposes to demolish the church and replace it with high-density housing.

Anglican claims of putting ministry ahead of money ring hollow when you see the opportunities the Lutherans (and some other denominations) create for other faith groups.

Why is it so difficult for the Anglican diocese to see through the shallow advice they are being given? Why advocate mercenary practices that preclude serious offers from other congregations because they cannot compete with developers?

This is exactly what is happening here in spite of community objections, in spite of Guelph city council questioning the entire process, in spite of a developer using the Ontario Municipal Board process to get its own way.

What a sad commentary on the state of affairs in the Anglican Church.

Anglican Hell hath no fury at all

I would be interested to know how many Anglican Church of Canada clergy believe in the reality of Hell. I suspect the number is very small.

When Hell is expunged from Christianity, there is no longer any need for a Saviour since there is nothing to save us from; sins are neither judged nor punished, so Jesus didn’t need to take them upon himself and die for them. Since Jesus didn’t die for our sins, he wouldn’t need to be God incarnate, physically resurrected, born of a virgin or sinless. Perhaps, as Anglican priest manqué, Tom Harpur suggests, Jesus never actually existed. As you can see, without Hell, the whole thing falls apart – just like the ACoC. Not to worry, though, there is still social justice.

Here is an interview with a clergyman who isn’t at all interested in being saved from Hell:

I came to be passionate about justice through Jesus, as I was introduced to him by figures like Martin Luther King Jr. and Desmond Tutu. They introduced me to a Jesus that I wanted to give my life too – not because if I didn’t I would go to hell, but because he was showing a way of life that was life, that was truth! When I hang out with my homeless friends, when I engage in social action, to me it is like a spiritual practice, I feel closer to Jesus.

I trust everyone has noticed my restraint in not making any cheap jokes about how the ACoC has invented – or “reimagined”, to use the in vogue non-word – its own particularly torturous version of hell: sitting through an ACoC sermon.

The new Bishop of Montreal wants to make the church relevant

Bishop Mary Irwin-Gibson is the new bishop of the Diocese of Montreal, a diocese whose membership has plummeted from 93,000 in 1960 to 11,000 in 2015.

How does she intend to make the diocese “relevant”? Well, she is going to carpet bomb the diocese with clichés. We have: “think outside the box” – a phrase I’ve heard used by witless business executives hundreds of times when they have run out of ideas – “build up their [the clergy’s] sense of engagement” and ….. wait for it, “make ministry viable and sustainable”. She does mention “sharing the Gospel”, which is odd since I’d have thought it too far inside the box to be worthy of attention. She is a liberal, so it is probably a gospel of the viable and sustainable rather than the real thing.

Needless to say, she has no “problem with same-sex marriage”.

From here:

Irwin-Gibson, 59, said there are no easy answers on how to ensure the viability of Anglicanism in Quebec but she is up for the challenge.

With fewer than 11,000 members in the Montreal diocese, down from about 93,000 in 1960, the denomination faces an uncertain future.

“Often we get stuck in the patterns of how we’ve been doing it,” said Irwin-Gibson, who replaces retiring bishop Barry Clarke.


Irwin-Gibson acknowledged the challenges are daunting but said she is ready to think outside the box to keep the Anglican Church relevant, even if the model of a traditional church and full-time priest in every parish is no longer possible.

“How do we do ministry in a meaningful way without the model of some old guy (who) lives in the house next door?” she asked.

“My goal is to encourage the clergy, to build up their sense of engagement, to … make ministry viable and sustainable for the next generation,” said Irwin-Gibson, whose last posting was Kingston, Ont., where she was the dean of St. George’s Cathedral for six years.