The Anglican Church of Canada has a long and proud tradition of Ecumenical and Interfaith work. Ecumenically we participate in dialogues with with the Roman Catholic Church (through ARCIC), the Orthodox Churches, and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (with whom we have an agreement on shared ministry). As well in Canada there is an ongoing conversation with the United Church of Canada.
At the local Diocesan level, our church has tried to support ecumenical and interfaith work in many different ways. Officially we have an Ecumenical and Interfaith Officer to try to keep in touch with the various faith traditions around us. Currently that officer is The Reverend Canon John Wilker-Blakley. Through his office we participate in the Capital Region Interfaith Council (founded by an Anglican, a Hindu, and a Muslim) which brings together representatives of the Christian tradition (Roman Catholic, Anglican, United Church), Christian related faiths (Christian Science and Latter Day Saints), Jewish, Hindu, Jain, Baha’i, Aboriginal Spirituality, and Muslim. CRIC sponsors three events every year. There is an autumn interfaith prayer service, a spring “Cleaning the Capital” event, and a Joy of Faith event which showcases the prayer, poetry, song and dance of the various traditions.
We also participate in the Christian Council of the Capital Area, which brings together representatives of many of the branches of the Christian Church to share common concerns and aspirations. Among the Council are representatives of the Anglican, Roman Catholic, Coptic Orthodox, Presbyterian, United Church, Lutheran, Greek Orthodox, and Mennonite churches, as well as representatives from the Ottawa Women’s Inter-Church Council, and the Multi-faith housing initiative. This group sponsors an annual ecumenical Thanksgiving service, the Annual Week of Prayer for Christian Unity Service, as well as an AGM open to all, and which hosts speakers on topics of social and spiritual concern.
In addition, we have historically been part of the Jewish Christian Dialogue.
Ecumenical and Interfaith Events
Our Diocese, through our Cathedral, has tried to host Ecumenical and/or Interfaith events to mark all occasions of national importance, whether it be a celebration such as the marking of Canada’s 150, hosting events to mark Truth and Reconciliation, or prayer vigils at times of national or local crisis. In addition there are many interfaith and ecumenical gatherings related to parishes in other parts of the Diocese.