When they purchase their Canadian Church Calendars for 2017, Anglican individuals and parishes are likely to notice at least one difference from the calendars of former years.
Instead of featuring photos of Anglican churches from across the country, next year’s calendar, available end of this month, will show Canadian Anglicans and Lutherans engaged in mission work, the national office announced earlier this year.
“Every month, when you turn the page of the new calendar, you’ll see a new engagement in activity that serves the common good or advocates for justice for the poor, and I hope that is inspiring for people,” Archdeacon Michael Thompson, general secretary of the Anglican Church of Canada, said in a news release.
“There are some beautiful church buildings, there’s no doubt about that,” he said. “But the loveliest thing about the church is God’s people engaged in the transforming mission of God: feeding the hungry and looking after…the poor, sheltering AA groups, welcoming refugees.”
Production of the calendar, formerly handled by the Anglican Journal, will now be overseen by Trina Gallop Blank, director of communications and stewardship of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Canada (ELCIC) and Meghan Kilty, director of communication and information resources for the Anglican Church of Canada.
The new concept for the calendar stems from a meeting between Anglican and Lutheran staff in 2014. The ELCIC had been expressing interest in a jointly produced calendar for several years already.
It was ELCIC National Bishop Susan Johnson, Thompson said, who first suggested the idea of a focus on mission rather than church buildings—an idea that found an enthusiastic supporter in Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada.
Kilty and Gallop Blank have been working on finding stories of Anglican and ELCIC mission work, which the calendar will document with “exciting, beautiful photos,” Kilty said.
The two churches, Kilty and Gallop Blank discovered, have a number of common areas when it comes to mission: both work in the Holy Land, they provide mutual support to hospitals and they also jointly organize the Canadian Lutheran Anglican Youth (CLAY) gathering, for example.
Calendars may be ordered from David C. Cook: 1-800-263-2664.