How did this Task Force come to be? At diocesan synod in May 2005 a previous task force, the Task Force on Diocesan Ministry and Outreach, offered findings and recommendations to move our life forward together as a diocese.
Among their findings was that the diocese needs a better way to match its physical resources to its mission as the Church.
This task force (now disbanded) recommended establishment of a new task force to recommend diocesan policy and procedures regarding the allocation of physical resources. "We believe the work cannot wait any longer," they said.
Thus was born the "Diocesan Task Force on Physical Resources" which Bishop Michael Ingham asked Mike Burpee, a parishioner at St. Laurence, to chair. Once appointed, the group began work in the fall of 2005.
They started by reviewing the research carried out by a commission on physical resources headed by John Spencer that reported in 1997, and another commission led by the Ven. Lou Rivers on models of ministry that reported the next year. They looked at work done in several other dioceses of the Anglican Church of Canada. And the task force engaged a research firm, David Nairne and Associates, to update population and other demographic statistics.
After much consideration, the members of the task force decided to focus their work around a series of three key events:
This month the Task Force will host a round of archdeaconry meetings to present to the parishes of the diocese their initial reflections on what has been learned and they will also be seeking input from those attending. This will be of great help to the Task Force members as they shape their recommendations.
In February 2007 another round of archdeaconry meetings will be held to present the draft version of the Task Force findings and recommendations. Once again, they will take the input from the sessions, and revise as necessary.
In May 2007 the Diocesan Task Force will submit its final report to Synod for decision.