In case of Pastoral emergency, while Rev. Robin is away on sabbatical, (until the end of November) you can contact Rev. Darrow Woods at Harrow United at (519) 738-4223
The office will be CLOSED Sept 21-22
MESSAGE FROM REV. ROBIN
The heat is on!! It has been quite the hot summer and we are very grateful that we have installed air conditioning in our sanctuary.
I am writing this while the Pope is visiting Canada to offer an apology on Canadian soil to our Indigenous people. This is a monumental time for our Indigenous siblings and there are mixed feelings about this visit. Some devout Catholics who are also Indigenous are pleased to have him here making amends for the hurts of the church, yet others cannot accept his words that they feel do not go far enough.
I cannot speak for the Catholic Church or the Indigenous community, but I will say that our denomination made an apology for the first time 30 years ago and since that time have asked how we could help to right the wrong. We paid the allotted fine given to our national body as having been part and responsible for a system that allowed abuse, (emotional, sexual, physical and spiritual) and we have worked at building a future of reconciliation with our Indigenous communities.
This past week our 44th General Council, the National body which governs our policies and sets our course, voted to accept the request of our Indigenous congregations for autonomy to become their own body within the United Church of Canada, together yet separate to teach in their own way the message of the Creator. To keep their languages, liturgies, and governance as their own.
In 2012, the United Church of Canada rescinded the Doctrine of Discovery which has been used to “wipe out” Indigenous communities for hundreds of years. This Doctrine allowed European entities to seize lands inhabited by Indigenous peoples under the guise of “discovering new land”, meaning those lands not inhabited by Christians. This Papal Bull (as they are called) was put into place in 1452 by Pope Nicholas V.
It is important for each of us to understand the past to build the future. This is our time in history to ensure that this kind of genocide cease. We can take this message and apply it to other areas of the world still warring over one land’s rights over another. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine; the genocide happening in Palestine and Afghanistan and many other places throughout Africa and Asia. We lament to God...
How long Lord? How long must your people suffer?
God’s answer is in our hands. We are the ones we have been waiting for. Let us bring peace to this broken world in all that we do and say in these days. Amen.
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WE ARE AN AFFIRMING CHURCH
ALL ARE WELCOME
Affirm United Ensemble is an organization of people of all sexual orientations and gender identities within The United Church of Canada. Affirm United works to promote the full inclusion of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people in the church and in society. The Affirming Ministries Program was launched by Affirm United and Friends of Affirm in the summer of 1992 (at that time, it was called “Affirming Congregations”). Each United Church organization that is an Affirming Ministry declares itself to be fully inclusive of people of all sexual orientations and gender identities—and they back up their words with action.