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A hybrid meeting of the Synod Council of the Diocese of Ontario was held on Tuesday, January 23, 2024 at 6 pm at St. Mark's Barriefield. Highlights of the meeting include:

Synod Council opened with reflections by The Rev. Richard Hetke, drawing on a blog entitled “Wrestling with an Angel” about a 22 year old struggling with developmental disabilities on his birthday, and how he is loved and special in God’s heart.

The agenda was approved, as well as the minutes of the November Synod Council meeting.

Bishop William reported that he is out and about in the diocese, with visitations scheduled until June.  He had a conversation with the national indigenous archbishop about the use of funds gathered for the archbishop and Indigenous Ministries. A motion to empower the archbishop to use the funds (from Synod 2021) at his discretion, subject to all financial reporting yearly was approved.

The bishop is working to reduce the diocesan deficit and developing the Lay Ministries Plan.

David Selzer introduced the situation at St. George’s Parish, Trenton and the resolution to place the place in Administration (Canon 23). A motion was passed to this effect, with The Ven. Nancy Beale as Administrator.

Mimi Merrill of Diocese of Ontario Refugee Support (DOORS) presented their 2023 Annual Report with full explanation. DOORs hosted 53 individuals in 2023.  

Wayne Varley discussed the Reach and Stretch Grants and the revised process, which will be presented at the February Synod Council meeting.

Alex Pierson presented the financial report. He also presented the property report and suggested the diocese hire a part-time person to manage the increasing number of properties the diocese holds.

Insurance – Alex Pierson said that rates for 2024 will increase by an average of 16% with a number of factors influencing this decision. Individual statements for congregations will be available next month (not April as in last year).

Legally, there are only two active actions underway in the diocese.

Wayne Varley said that there was an evaluation of parish administration completed for St Paul’s, Kingston. He also spoke about Stewardship and how that is slowly returning to normal.

The Synod Council adjourned with the saying of the Grace.

The next regularly scheduled meeting of Synod Council will be Tuesday, February 27, 2024, at 6pm.

The approval of the minutes of the Jan 23 meeting are pending. For questions about Synod Council, please contact the Ven. David Selzer, Diocesan Executive Officer, by email at or by phone at 613-777-0540.