Anglican Church of Canada. Diocese of New Westminster. Diocesan Board of Religious Education

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Anglican Church of Canada. Diocese of New Westminster. Diocesan Board of Religious Education

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        The Diocesan Board of Religious Education was created in April, 1927, at the 44th session of Synod. The Board was governed by "Canon XIII on Religious Education" that superceded the previous "Canon XIII on Sunday School Commission". The Diocesan Board of Religious Education consisted of "the Bishop of the Diocese, the Archdeacon or Archdeacons, the Rural Deans together with six clergymen and laymen to be elected by the Synod". (Canon XIII, section 3). The 1938 revised version of the Constitution and Canons identifies the Diocesan Board of Religious Education as one of the Standing Committees (Canon XVI). The mandate of the Board included educational programmes for children, youth and adults in both urban and rural settings. It organized and ran numerous conferences, training sessions, and activities for lay leaders and Sunday School teachers. The Board operated under many divisions and committees, such as: Adult Education, Leadership Training (including Teacher Training), Youth Work, Children's Work, Church Vacation Schools, Radio and Television, Christian Drama, Summer Work Program, and Liaison with other Diocesan organizations. In 1965, the Board felt that the time had come to review the existing Board structure in order to improve the communication lines from Diocesan to Parish and to the individual level. Several meetings and a special meeting (November 1965) were held to discuss this matter. The consultations led to the conclusion that religious education, mission, stewardship, and social service can not be separated. In order to effectively respond to this interaction across departmental boundaries, the Board suggested co-ordinating the work under the Diocesan Planning Committee. The Diocese hired Price Waterhouse Co. to investigate and propose new directions. The report strongly recommended the building of an integrated and unified program that would be able to shift actions from one program aspect to another, reflecting current priorities. At a special session (December 8 - 9, 1967), the Synod acted upon this report. The existing article VII of Constitutions and Canons was repealed in its entirety, and a completely new article was substituted. A Diocesan Program Committee was formed to assume and to integrate the existing programs split into a number of different areas. The existing committees and boards were disbanded, with their activities being taken up by the new Diocesan Programme Committee, beginning in 1968.


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