At its meeting on March 23rd, the Executive updated the Mission section of the Regional Council Policy by adding;
” … the Regional Council and the Regional Council Executive will encourage and engage in: living in right relations with Indigenous peoples, and responding positively and meaningfully to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action and the Caretakers of Our Indigenous Circle Calls to the Church; becoming an anti-racist church (declaration of the Commissioners of the 43rd General Council, October 24, 2020); welcoming people of all ages, abilities, races, sexual orientations and gender identities, and any other forms of marginalization into, and removing barriers to, the life, work and leadership of the Region and our communities of faith.” The Executive also met with members of the Living Into Right Relations Circle to continue discussions started in January 2020. The Executive expressed interest in continuing to build relationship and welcome input from the Circle. It was suggested that the Executive and the Living Into Right Relations Circle have a yearly conversation to work toward clarity of roles. It was agreed that a smaller working group made up of members of both the Circle and the Executive would be helpful.
General Council 44
The Executive passed a motion to schedule a Regional Council meeting for the evening of Thursday June 17, 2021 for the election of Commissioners for General Council 44.
Equity Committee The Equity Committee lifts up our regional Affirming Ministry Celebration, held on March 14, 2021. This step completes the recognition of being an Affirming Region with Affirm United/S’Affirmer Ensemble. Now the journey to live into the commitment begins. To share the prayer for our region or request a rainbow flag, visit our website https://shiningwatersregionalcouncil.ca/about/affirming. Moving forward, we are beginning conversations about gathering in a good way.
Anti-Racism The staff of both Shining Waters and Canadian Shield have embarked on a one-year journey of learning and conversation around anti-racism. They are taking part in a course run by Salem Debs who is an Anti-Racism Coach, Consultant & Trainer specializing in anti-Black racism, equity, inclusion and implicit bias awareness.
Pastoral Relations Commission The Pastoral Relations Commission currently sponsors the Equity Goal Research Project. The Commission wants to know how its actions and policies create inequity, and how it’s action and policies can increase equity for ministry personnel. Marcie Gibson has been hired to conduct this research project. Results of the research project will be presented to the Pastoral Relations Commission in June 2021. For more information about the Equity Goal Research Project, please go to https://shiningwatersregionalcouncil.ca/pastoral-relations/pastoral-relations-commission/. In addition to the research project, the Pastoral Relations Commission hosts an equity education session at most of its monthly meetings. At our February meeting, Adele Halliday joined and spoke about her new position as Anti-Racism and Equity Officer for the United Church of Canada.
At the Commission’s January and February 2021 meetings, the Commission approved nine calls and appointments of ministry personnel. The Commission also noticed wide variation in the annual telephone amounts that were being paid to ministry personnel. To create more equity, the Commission has passed a policy that sets annual telephone compensation at a minimum of $800 per year.
Social & Ecological Justice Commission The Social & Ecological Justice Commission has two invitations for members of the region.
As plans emerge for Good Friday services, the Commission is offering curated materials for use in worship which are centred around the theme of homelessness. The issue of homelessness is very important to the work of the Social & Ecological Justice Commission. Where do you see crucifixion in your community? Where do you see hope? You can find the resources here.
In addition, on April 8th the Commission invites you to light a candle, take a picture, and post it to social media (#UCCanlivableincome, #guaranteedlivableincome #basicincome) in support of a Guaranteed Livable Income. Send it to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland, your local MP, and news outlets. Follow up with an email using the email template available, or craft your own. For those interested in holding a vigil at your MP’s constituency office, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rachael Howes, Administrative Support
Shining Waters Regional Council
416-231-7680 / 800-268-3781, ext. 6144