- CANADA: Arctic seeks CAN$3 million to rebuild beloved 'igloo church'
- CANADA: Primate has made youth a priority
- ENGLAND: Archbishop Desmond Tutu visits St. Luke's Hospital, urges 'give generously'
- MIDDLE EAST: ERD responds to Gaza hospital operating amidst violence
- NIGERIA: Women's priestly ordination still opposed by majority of churchgoers
- SOUTHERN AFRICA: Archbishop of Cape Town promotes middle ground in 'Heartlands of Anglicanism'
CANADA: Arctic seeks CAN$3 million to rebuild beloved 'igloo church'
Cathedral was declared unsalvageable after arson last year
[Source: Anglican Journal] St. Jude's Anglican Cathedral, the "igloo church" that was a landmark in Iqaluit until it was destroyed by arson in December 2005, has been demolished and the diocese of the Arctic is now appealing for help to finance its rebuilding, estimated at CAN$3 million (US$11.5 million).
The cathedral, which was deconsecrated last Easter and demolished June 1, was declared unsalvageable after a vandal set it on fire last year.
"It is now clear that the total money that we will receive through our insurance will not be enough to replace the cathedral," said Bishop Andrew Atagotaaluk of the Arctic, in an appeal letter. "According to the information that our engineers and architects are providing, we will need to fundraise approximately $3 million in order to have a new building that is up to code and has a large seating capacity." (The building is estimated to cost $4 million; the diocese could receive up to $1 million towards reconstruction from the insurance, said the appeal letter.)
Atagotaaluk said that while a fundraising campaign has been launched in Iqaluit and in every parish in the diocese, "it is also clear that providing such a large amount will require asking for special consideration by our supporters."
He added: "The total fundraising is beyond the capacity of Anglicans and residents of the Arctic alone. Our Arctic appeal must go out acrossCanada and indeed around the world, to both Anglicans and to people of all faiths, who care about the welfare of the Inuit and the people of the North."
The church has hired a professional fundraiser, Doug Little, to run the campaign. Little said in an interview that $120,000 has been raised since the fundraising effort began a month ago; 2,000 letters of appeal were mailed out already.
Full story by Marites N. Sison
CANADA: Primate has made youth a priority
[Source: Anglican Church of Canada] When he was elected Primate of the Anglican Church of Canada in 2004, Archbishop Andrew Hutchison said he would make youth ministry a priority.
In his travels since then, he has attempted to meet as many young people as possible and to engage them in issues that matter to them. He has urged all committees of Canada's General Synod to be more inclusive of young people and to pay more attention to the things that are important to them.
ENGLAND: Archbishop Desmond Tutu visits St. Luke's Hospital, urges 'give generously'
[Source: Fiona Fountain Associates] Archbishop Desmond Tutu paid a special visit to St. Luke's Hospital for the Clergy in London, England, as it closed for essential refurbishment. The Nobel Peace Prize winner was keen to see the hospital before its nine-month closure. He enthusiastically started the process by knocking down the first wall himself.
In order to continue providing free medical care to Anglican clergy and foreign missionaries, the hospital must comply with current healthcare standards. This means a complete overhaul of much of the hospital's structure and facilities.
"The service that St. Luke's provides is invaluable," Tutu said. "Clergy are often forced to choose between providing care and support to their parish and attending a hospital appointment. It's often a desperate choice to make. St Luke's understands their commitments and so endeavors to arrange treatment at an appropriate time."
He continued: "St Luke's also provides essential treatment for foreign missionaries and Anglican clergy from overseas. Medical care in some countries can be extremely poor so it is important that there is somewhere for these people to turn for help when they need it. It's absolutely vital that their good work is allowed to continue. I urge you to give generously to St. Luke's."
Tutu was shown around the hospital by its chief executive John Cherry, who explained the changes which will be taking place. He met a number of the staff, both past and present, who were all thrilled and inspired by his visit. A total of £2.7 million is needed to fund the refurbishment of which £1.7 million has already been raised, allowing the work to begin.
"I'm delighted Archbishop Tutu has agreed to help us with our development appeal," said Cherry. "It has been a pleasure to welcome him here today and show him around the hospital. The remaining £1 million is still very much needed and I hope people all around the world will heed his words and support us."
MIDDLE EAST: ERD responds to Gaza hospital operating amidst violence
[Source: Episcopal Relief and Development] Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD) is sending emergency assistance to the Al Ahli Arab hospital in Gaza where the fighting in the region has caused an electrical outage for the entire city. All the phone lines are down and the only source of communication is through the limited availability of cell phones. The hospital is currently using a back-
up generator but because of limited fuel, the generator is expected to remain functional for only 20 more days.
On Friday, July 7, a bombing in northern Gaza killed several dozen Palestinians and one Israeli. There is severe overcrowding at the hospital -- women and children, as well as soldiers, line the corridors waiting for medical help. "We are short of medical supplies ... People coming from the south can only get here with great difficulty," said Shalia Tarazi, director of Al Ahli Arab hospital. "We can only ask God for mercy now."
ERD is working with the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem to supply critical aid to keep Al Ahli Arab fully operational.
NIGERIA: Women's priestly ordination still opposed by majority of churchgoers
[Source: Nigerian Tribune] Bishop George Latunji Lasebikan of the Diocese of Ondo has revealed that 82 percent of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) is opposed to the ordination of women.
Making the disclosure during the 53rd Mothers' Union Conference at the Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Yaba, Ondo State, on July 8 -- ironically the same day that the Church of England's General Synod voted in favor of the principle of women bishops -- Lasebikan said that "the recent pro-forma sent to branches of the church across the country revealed that 82 percent of our members emphatically are against it."
"We were astonished at the response of the church to the issue because we thought our members would want to go with the trend in most churches today, particularly the pentecostal ones," Lasebikan said.
The bishop, however, disclosed further that a permanent diaconate would soon be established within the church to create an avenue for women to participate in the leadership of the church, and would accommodate both women and men.
Full story by Soji Adeniyi
SOUTHERN AFRICA: Archbishop of Cape Town promotes middle ground in 'Heartlands of Anglicanism'
[Source: Anglican Church of Southern Africa] Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane of Cape Town has written to the Primates of the Anglican Communion issuing a strong call to uphold the "broad rich heartlands of our Anglican heritage," which, he argues, must be "the territory on which we debate our future."
In a lengthy reflection on what it is to be Anglican, Ndungane declares, "we cannot lose this middle ground," and argues that the central core of Anglican tradition is not bland or shallow, but offers "productive spiritual soil."
He refutes any suggestion that embracing the middle ground means "anything goes." Rather, he affirms uncompromising dedication and obedience to the heart of faith, as it is lived under the authority of Scripture, of Church order and structures, and of Christian tradition. His call follows the recent "profound and stimulating reflections" by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, titled "The Challenge and Hope of Being an Anglican Today."
In responding, Ndungane asks "What does it mean to be Anglican?" and affirms Archbishop Williams' description of the fundamental character of Anglicanism as combining the best of both catholic and reformed tradition, which together inform mature engagement with contemporary culture. He contends that any authentic solution to current differences within the Anglican Communion must preserve these strengths.
Full text of Ndungane's reflection