A proposal for more coordination amongst the various committees that have a hand in running the diocese was favourably received by Diocesan Council at its meeting last month.

The 40-member group generally agreed with a recommendation presented by Jane Osler, chair of the Diocesan Communications and Marketing Committee, that a new “Ministry Resources Committee” be set up to deliver what she called “integrated ministry.” If Diocesan Synod approves, it would replace the Stewards in Action Ministry Committee.

The group would include a member each from the various standing committees of the diocese: Ministry and Congregational Development, Stewardship Development, Planned Giving, Communications and Marketing, Grants and Loans, and the Ordained Ministry Division - plus several members at large.

Under the proposal, the new committee would sponsor semi-annual ministry forums that would allow diocesan leaders to consider diocesan strategy and priorities.

But the Diocesan Council turned back a second proposal that Osler advanced, that the chairs of the diocesan standing committees, along with the bishop, dean, and an archdeacon, be the group that takes the lead in developing diocesan strategy over the medium to long term (three to five years).

Several council members felt this group was not sufficiently representative of the diocese, although the group would have no decision-making powers.

The Rev. Roberta Fraser of St. Anselm’s said she feared the “perception” that planning was being produced by an ‘in-group.’

“Nobody on this group is an elected person,” she said. “They are all bishop’s appointees.”

Following the debate, Bishop Michael Ingham suggested that the group which came up with the proposal, the chairs of the Standing Committees, take “another look” and return to Council.