The 44th session of the Diocesan Synod of Central Newfoundland was held April 28-30 in the Parishes of Fortune-Lamaline and Grand Bank.
The Rt. Rev. John Watton, who presided over the Synod, said a synod is really a large three-day meeting with representatives of the life of faith all around the Diocese involving hundreds of people – delegates, volunteers, hospitality, youth and communities.
The Bishop explained this was a business synod; so many matters of functional relevance to the Diocese were discussed. He said this synod was a good one.
“Our people in this diocese have been ready for quite awhile now to make some changes and to move towards being more proactive about our future,” he said.
At the opening service, Bishop John Watton delivered the Bishop’s charge, designed to set the tone and direction for the church over the next year or so.
“The idea now is that in these changing times we have to find ways to be a church for this generation,” he said. “There are many challenges facing the church today including a shrinking and aging population, changing attitudes towards faith and religion, a generation that does not have a cultural attachment to the church anymore and, of course, financial challenges.”
Shirley Walters, who chaired the planning committee for the synod, said even though it involved a lot of work arranging billets and planning meals among other things, it was a rewarding experience.
Representatives from churches in Grand Bank, Fortune and Lamaline made up the committee.
“We all came together as one in a spirit of co-operation and sharing,” she said.
The Central Diocese encompasses a large geographical area of the island portion of Newfoundland and Labrador with 32 parishes and 104 churches.