Anglicans from all around Tasmania, about 180 clergy and lay people, met in our annual Synod, ‘Tasmanian Anglican Parliament’, at Launceston Church Grammar School over 22-24 May. A good time was had by all and we rejoiced in fellowship, conversation in agreement and disagreement, and advancing the kingdom of God. Highlights of synod business included:
- The Youth Ministry Development Strategy was approved in which the Diocese will spend about $130,000 per year over coming years to seed fund new youth programs and develop existing ones. The parish based strategy will include local church youth groups, camps, schools and other ministries. See Youth Ministry Papers in the Reports Booklet pages 30-32, Bowditch Report, Youth Taskforce report 2007 and Hawkins Report.
- The Imagine Project progress report was very encouraging as we step out in faith in church planting. The slides for ‘Connections’, the Somerset Project, are at http://will-briggs.blogspot.com/2009/05/last-nine-months.html
- Bush Church Aid (BCA) Capo Maximo, Canon Brian Roberts, was our guest speaker and enlightened us about the early days of pioneer ‘bush’ ministry and its development into 21st century. Ingenuity coupled with courage and gospel passion were/are the keys to winning ‘Australia for Christ’. See also page 20 of Presidential Address: Attachment C, ‘BCA and the Diocese of Tasmania: Partners in mission’.
- The Environment Report was received and will contribute to understanding and commitment to a sustainable future.
- A Pastoral Protocol for the operation of women in the episcopate was approved. This is a very significant development which in my humble opinion is the best such protocol in the national church. I will post the link when available.
And of course, the Presidential Address – red sox and all!
The Pentecost Pastoral Letter to the Anglican Church in Tasmania entitled, The Spirit of Christ transforming LIFE – Pentecost 2009 was distributed at Synod – available Pentecost Sunday in all parishes. See the YouTube version.