On May 30, 2019, 35 people from across the country descended upon the Diocese of Toronto for what is hoped to be the inaugural Annual Conference for Anglicans in Spiritual care. Six Rupert’s Landers attended, including Bishop Geoff.
It was a weekend of learning, covering such topics as self-care and MAID [Medical Assistance in Dying], but it was also a time to begin the development of a network that has not truly been present in recent years.
Historically, hospital chaplaincy has been run by the Catholic Church, but over the years, the link between the Church and chaplains has been broken. Changing names over time from chaplain to spiritual care associate, among a few others, the relationship with the Church has been strained as the department moves from a Catholic-based service to a multi-faith one.
However, from the discussions over the span of the four-day conference, the desire of these 35 spiritual care associates to remain connected to the Anglican Church is quite strong. One of the main takeaways from this conference, for me personally, is the importance of the rebuilding of that relationship, for both the spiritual care departments across the country as well as for the Anglican Church.
By taking the time to create right relationship with each other, both parties can learn from one another and help each other to grow in their discipleship of Christ and in their spreading of God’s love. – Theo Robinson
Photos: Eileen Scully, Director of Faith, Worship and Ministry for the Anglican Church of Canada