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I have recently returned home from my first Council of General Synod (CoGS).  This is the council that was elected at our last General Synod here in Vancouver, and the first meeting chaired by our new primate.

I've done a lot of things in the church, but I've never served on a national council. To be honest, I wasn't sure what this council does.

We spent three days in meetings together with the theme: A Changing Church. A Searching World. A Faithful God.

We sat together in Bible study considering the road to Emmaus story from three different perspectives including an indigenous telling of this story. We talked about where God surprises us, where God shows up unexpectedly and where we find hope.

We created norms for how we want to be together as a council, including how we want to handle disagreements. We practiced consensus decision making. We did the normal council things including a conversation on and approval of the budget. We heard various reports and various presentations including conversations on the work of  Kairos and PWRDF and the work that is being done in our church on modern slavery and human trafficking, to name a few.

But as I reflect on our time together, what I am taking away is how many ways that our church is showing up in our country. I was struck by how much people love our church and their communities and the many signs of hope in various forms that were expressed.

I left feeling grateful to be a part of the conversation and the work that will come.

I feel grateful for the voice of our new Primate. I am grateful to be learning about work of establishing the self-determining Indigenous church and the Anglican Council of Indigenous Peoples or ACIP. I am excited for what will come.

I invite you to hold in your prayers this council, the work that we are doing and the staff of General Synod who support us and are on the ground for many of these things. If you would like to read the official overview of the meeting, you can do that here.

I look forward continuing this work and telling you about it!


  • The Reverend Marnie Peterson offering a reflection as a new member at the end of the meeting Photo: Melanie Delva