Magazine article Anglican Journal

A Tale of Two Parishes: Two Very Different Responses to Restructuring

Magazine article Anglican Journal

A Tale of Two Parishes: Two Very Different Responses to Restructuring

Article excerpt

The Rev. Chris Parsons is witnessing two different responses to recommendations for re-structuring in the diocese of British Columbia. Parsons has been working for more than four years serving two parishes that the B.C. report has now earmarked for dis-establishment. The report recommends their properties be leased or sold. It also recommends that both congregations join a larger community at St. Paul's, which will also be dis-established and then re-established under a new name as a hub church.

Both are suburban Victoria congregations: one is St. Martin-in-the-Fields; the other is St. Columba, Strawberry Vale. The reactions from the two parishes could not be more different, Parsons says.

Even though the restructuring has been discussed for years, parishioners at St. Columba were still taken by surprise. They had hoped his part-time ministry at their church, which has an average Sunday attendance of 37, would become a full-time position. Parsons described the congregation as a close-knit family-group that would like to continue to worship together even if it means being part of a larger worship community. …

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