(June 2008)

Publisher’s Guidelines

  1. The Publisher of the Algoma Anglican is the Bishop of Algoma.
  2. The Executive Committee of the Diocese is an advisory board to the Publisher on matters of overall policy and authorizes the diocesan contribution to the Algoma Anglican budget.
  3. The Algoma Anglican is the Diocesan newspaper of the Anglican Church and the Diocese of Algoma, but it is not the official voice of the Church.
  4. The Editor is appointed by the Bishop as Publisher.
  5. The Editor exercises editorial freedom within the broad policy guidelines.
  6. The paper should select accurate and balanced information about the Anglican Church and the Diocese of Algoma.
  7. The onus is on all parishes and agencies of the Diocese to submit interesting and informative materials.
  8. The Algoma Anglican will strive to be a newspaper that will hold up a mirror to the Church allowing it to see itself.
  9. The paper will reflect to Anglicans, who they are and what they are doing in the Diocese and in the parishes, and will encourage them to share in that telling. This is to be done in a positive way and from a Christian theological perspective.
  10. The Algoma Anglican will accommodate the communications needs of Diocesan Committees, Task Forces, and groups.
  11. The Algoma Anglican has not normally had an editorial page. Where it wishes to take an editorial stand which challenges the official position of the Anglican Church in the Diocese, the paper will carry, on the same page, a clear, understandable explanation of the official position of the Church as stated by the Bishop, the Diocesan Synod, or the Diocesan Executive Committee.
  12. The Algoma Anglican has a mandate to inform the Diocesan Anglican community about the Church’s affairs, problems, and progress.
  13. Good letters to the Editor:
    a. Allow readers of the Algoma Anglican to raise issues with other readers.
    b. Focus on issues rather than personal comments and criticisms.
    c. Are a positive contribution to informed debate and decision-making – neither an attempt to cause harm or embarrassment to others nor to advance personal or parish conflicts.

(March 2006, updated 2014)

The Executive Committee has put in place a Policy on Alcohol use:

This policy governs the serving of alcohol at parish functions and/or on church property. Nothing in this policy is intended to impose upon any person who resides on church property (or upon any such person’s family) a standard of behaviour different from that imposed upon a person who does not reside on church property (or upon any such person’s family).

In view of recent litigation relating to the responsibility of people and organizations sponsoring events where alcohol will be served, the following directives must be observed when associated with church events and/or facilities.

  1. The event, including the rental of or other use of church property, must be held in compliance with the Liquor License Act Ontario RSO (1990), the Smart Serve Ontario Dos and Don’ts, and common law negligence principles.
  2. The parish must ascertain that at any event at which alcohol is served, all bartenders/waiter are certified by Smart Serve Ontario.
  3. The parish must inform our diocesan insurers (the Synod office will help you make this contact) of the details of the event and be guided by their instructions if any.

Church event not held on church property:

  1. Such events, wherever possible, are to be held in licensed premises, and the owner of the premises must control the bar facilities.
  2. The parish must confirm that the premises where the event is to be held has a liquor license, where required by law and policy, and that sufficient numbers of people are available to assure compliance with the items in point #2 above.

Church events not held in licensed premises:

  1. The church event coordinator must obtain a Special Occasion Permit at least thirty (30) days prior to the event.
  2. All persons serving alcohol must be certified by Smart Serve Ontario.

Non-church events held on church property:

  1. Any individual or group that wishes to serve alcohol at an event to be held on church property must be encouraged to seek an alternate venue for the event.
  2. The individual or group that wishes to serve alcohol at an event to be held on church property MUST obtain a Special Occasion Permit and show it to the Corporation of the Church at least thirty (30) days prior to the event. As per permit regulations, no alcoholic beverages other than those purchased on the permit will be brought onto the property.
  3. Notwithstanding #1 above, the group or individual using the church property must complete and sign the “Agreement for Use” form issued by the Diocese of Algoma and pay the appropriate usage fee before the event.

Collection Development Policy (March 1999, revised November 2012) 

  1. Purpose of the Collection:  The Diocese of Algoma Archives exists as a collection in order to maintain and preserve the cultural, historical, evidentiary, and legal records – in all media formats – of the Diocese, its organizations and parishes.
  2. Goals of the Collection
    1. To maintain the collection in a suitable environment so that records can be preserved for future use.
    2. To provide access to the historical records of the Diocese.
    3. To provide the resources for research, both scholarly and private.
    4. To provide information to parishes and parishioners in response to specific requests.
  3. Responsibility for the Collection
    1. Diocese: Ownership of the Archives of the Diocese of Algoma is retained by the Diocese. They are held and managed by Algoma University Archives as per the joint agreement between the Diocese and Algoma University.
    2. Diocesan Archivist.
      1. The Diocesan Archivist has the responsibility for the acquisition of materials for the Archives, including locating and retrieving such material.
      2. The Diocesan Archivist also has the responsibility for developing and administering any policies pertinent to the Archives Collection, within the context of the joint agreement.
      3. The Diocesan Archivist will have the responsibility of forwarding to the University Archives all materials designated for the Diocesan Archives. Therefore, all materials designated for the Archives will be submitted to the Diocesan Archivist.
      4. Other duties as prescribed by Canon B-4 of the Diocese.
    3. Algoma University: Section 3 of the joint agreement between the Diocese and the University outlines the Obligations and Privileges of the University.
  4. Types of Materials in the Collection
    1. General definition. In general terms, materials that should be kept in the Archives include records:
      – that are useful to a future historian,
      – that contain information that will help to resolve disputes,
      – that contain information that has a legal value,
      – that reveal something of the essential character of the Diocese and its parish families,
      – that contain key or critical parts of the Diocesan history,
      – that contain statistics about growth and composition,
      – that contain unusual insights into the roles of clergy and lay,
      – that contain essential information about major organizations and projects within the Diocese and its parishes,
      – that contain biographical information of key people.
    2. Materials to be included. The following is a list of the types of materials to be included. While not an exhaustive list, it will provide a guideline for determining what should be considered as part of the Archives Collection.
      1. Diocese
        – Bishops’ papers
        – Register of Episcopal Acts, Ordinations, Confirmations, etc.
        – Register of Licenses
        – Registers of the deeds or Property registers of the Diocese
        – Constitution and Canons
        – Journals of Synod meetings
        – Minutes of Diocesan Executive meetings
        – Diocesan newspaper
        – Reports of major task forces and Ad Hoc Committees
        – Annual reports and historical material of autonomous or semiautonomous groups
        – biographical material on Bishops, Diocesan staff and Lay people prominent in Synod activities
        – photographs with dates, places, and, if possible, names of people shown, written in pencil.
        – histories of the Diocese
        – films, videos, audio tapes of specific events, or oral history
        – annual reports to the National Church
        – general ledgers, audited financial statements, and trust ledgers
      2. Parish
        – ministers’ records, both parish and personal, regarding the parish
        – parish council/church committee minutes
        – parish annual meeting minutes
        – information on organizations
        – minutes, etc (not financial records)
        – vestry books and registers of baptisms, marriages, burials, confirmations
        – photographs with dates, places, and, if possible, names of people shown, written in pencil
        – architectural drawings
        – forms of services for special occasions – eg. inductions,  anniversaries (not regular service leaflets or bulletins)
        – parish rolls
        – Sunday School registers,
        – parish cemetery, or memorial garden records
        – parish histories
        – parish newsletters or publications.
        – biographical material on parish clergy and prominent lay people
        – films, videos, audio tapes of specific events, or oral history
        – annual financial statements
    3. Materials to be excluded. The following is a list of the types of materials to be excluded. While not an exhaustive list, it will provide a guideline for determining what should not be considered as part of the Archives Collection held at Algoma University.
      -correspondence marked “Confidential”
      -materials that contain unsubstantiated accusations against anyone living or dead – materials which, in the opinion of the Bishop or Chancellor, should not be a matter of public record
      -confidential personnel materials such as medical information, references, psychological test results, and other personal information of this nature
      -any record of church court proceedings
      -private information concerning any individual or situation which results from privileged pastoral relationships
      -marriage licenses and acknowledgements from district registrars
      -monthly financial statements
      -materials circulated from other levels of the church
  5. Access to the Collection
    1. Diocesan Personnel as per Section 2.3.2 of the Joint Agreement between the Diocese and Algoma University, the Depositor and duly identified members shall have access to all documents in the Diocesan Archives. For the purposes of this Diocesan Policy, the “Depositor” is identified as the Bishop and the “duly identified members” are identified as the Diocesan Archivist and the Chancellor of the Diocese.
    2. University Archivist as per Section 2.3.1 of the Joint Agreement between the Diocese and Algoma University, the personnel of the Archives shall have complete access to all materials contained in the Diocesan Archives.
    3. Students/Scholars/Genealogical or Parish History Researchers as per Section 2.3.4 of the Joint Agreement between the Diocese and Algoma University, access may be given to documents within the Diocesan Archives. Such persons will be subject to all rules of consultation of the University Archives, and any restrictions cited in the Diocesan Policy.
      1. Persons interested in doing extensive research for a family or parish history must arrange to visit Algoma University and do the research themselves. If this is not feasible, university student(s) can be hired to do the research. Arrangements for this can be made through the University Archivist. The person making the request for the research will be responsible for paying the costs of hiring the student.
      2. Individuals seeking information from the Diocesan Archives will not have access to the Archives stack areas. Information will be retrieved by request to the University Archivist.
      3. Researchers who require verification of a record from a parish register can submit a request for this information. An individual must complete a Search Request Form and forward it to the Diocese of Algoma Synod Office. Search Request Forms are available on the diocesan website.   A money order for the search fee payable to Algoma University must accompany the form.
        Algoma University Archival Information
    4. Restricted Access to Materials:  The University Archivist has the right to refuse access to any materials for reasons which include their unprocessed nature, fragile condition or lack of required search elements by the researcher.
    5. Parish Record Inquiries Requests for verification of a record from a single parish register can be submitted to the Diocese of Algoma Synod Office. A Search Request Form must be completed for each such request. Forms are available through the local parish or online at the diocesan website.  A money order for the search fee payable to Algoma University must accompany the form.  It is not accepted policy of The Anglican Church of Canada to photocopy parish registers. 
    6. Publication rights as per Section 2.3.6 of the joint agreement between the Diocese and the University, written authorization must be obtained prior to access being given to the Archives. Such permission shall be granted by the Diocesan Archivist with the following conditions.
      1. Credit must be given in the publication to the Diocese for the use of the material.
      2. Photograph originals will not be borrowed from the collection. Photocopies can be obtained through the University Archivist. If this arrangement is not satisfactory, the Diocesan Archivist can be contacted.
    7. Removal of Material: No original records will be removed from the University Archives. If material is desired for use in parish displays, family or parish histories, or other publications, etc., copies can be requested from the University Archivist. Such copies will be made available where feasible, with the understanding that the physical condition of the original records may preclude any copying.
    8. Episcopal/Synod Records with Archival Value Requests for access to these records (in Sault Ste. Marie) shall be addressed to the Diocesan Archivist, in writing. Such a request will clearly outline the reason for the request, the purpose for which the information will be used, and the records to be accessed. The Diocesan Archivist will make a recommendation to the Bishop for access, considering the following:
      a) A recognition of the value to historical research of these records.
      b) A recognition of the need to maintain personal and familial privacy.
      c) The best interests of the Diocese.
  6. Records Retention
    1. Diocese
      1. Bishop’s Papers. Five years of papers for the current Bishop will be kept at the Synod Office. Papers for the current Bishop that are more than 5 years’ old will be forwarded to the Archives, once any sensitive material has been removed. Previous Bishops’ papers are on file in the Diocesan Archives.
    2. Parish
      1. Paper Records. As a general principle, there should be 7 years’ of parish records retained in the parish for reference purposes. Materials that are more than 7 years old should be sent to the Diocesan Archivist. Parish and service registers, when full, should be retained for a period of 7 years following the last date of entry, and then sent to the Diocesan Archivist.
  7. Access to Parish Registers (revised March 2010, enacted November 2002))
    1. Requests to view parish registers for an individual’s own records will be granted upon due identification.
    2. Requests to view parish registers from a third party will be granted upon due identification under the following conditions:
      o Baptismal records 100 years or older
      o Marriage records 75 years or older
      o Burial records 50 years or older
    3. Requests to view parish registers from a third party for records that are less than the time frames stated in 1.2 will be granted upon due identification under the following conditions:
      o Baptism Records: The requester is the parent or the child named on the certificate, and their name is on the baptism record, OR
      o The requester is the closest next-of-kin, executor, or “estate trustee”, and the person named on the record is deceased. (proof of death will be required.
      o Marriage Records: The requester is the child (natural or adoptive) of the bride and groom, OR
      o The requester is a parent of the bride or groom, OR
      o The requester is the closest next-of-kin, executor, or “estate trustee”, and either the  bride or groom is deceased. (Proof of death will be required.)
      o Burial Records: The requester is the deceased’s closest next-of-kin, executor, or ‘estate trustee’.
    4. lf the above conditions do not apply to the requester, the permission from a valid third party must be obtained prior to making the request to the Diocesan Archives and proof of such permission must accompany the search request.

(March 2006)

The churches and youth groups of our Diocese want their children and teens to receive the best care possible while attending church events. Since our Diocese is in Northern Ontario, and many parishes have multiple points of ministry, leaders of our children’s and youth ministries frequently plan events that require volunteer drivers. In order to ensure that our drivers and their young passengers are as safe as possible on the road, the Youth Ministry Committee of our Diocese has created these guidelines for parish, deanery and diocesan use.

There are three points in this set of guidelines:

  1. Get permission from the parents
  2. Use reliable drivers
  3. Plan a safe trip

Get permission from the parents

All passengers under the full age of 18 years must have permission from a parent or guardian before they get into the car. The best way to ensure this is to use a ‘permission form’ that the parent must sign in order to grant permission. It is the trip organizer’s job to ensure that parents/guardians are aware of the trip plan and have granted permission for the child/youth to attend.

Use reliable drivers

Your concern is only with the people who are driving ‘on behalf of’ the church.

If parents/guardians transport their own children, or arrange car pools independently, they are not considered to be driving ‘on behalf of’ the church. If the church arranges the car pools, the drivers are acting ‘on behalf of’ the church.

Drivers must have the appropriate driving skills and insurance to transport children and youth for church events. It is the trip organizer’s job to ensure that the each driver has the appropriate qualifications, and are aware of the liability they assume while driving on behalf of the church. The best way to accomplish this is to give each driver a ‘driver form’ that outlines the requirements and rules for transporting children/youth to and from church events, and requiring each driver to sign the form. There are two examples of driver forms on pages 2-3 of these guidelines – feel free to use them!

Plan a safe trip

There are many factors that contribute to a successful trip: planning, permission, drivers and suitable weather are just a few. It is the job of the trip organizer to ensure that the trip is planned properly and with safety of the drivers and passengers as a primary concern.

(June 2014)

Worship: On a regular basis, through liturgy, prayers and music, our congregations will celebrate the creation which the Creator has entrusted to our care.

Education: Through educational and advocacy programs, our congregations will become knowledgeable about the latest environmental and technological challenges and issues that impact creation positively and/or negatively.

Programming: Parishes will adopt and integrate environmental approaches and activities based on the philosophy and practices of reduce, reuse and recycle.  Through responsible lifestyle choices and energy efficient actions, parishes will make decisions that will have a positive impact on their ecological footprint. 

(October 2012)


  • To be accountable to Synod and to do the work of Synod between the meetings of Synod
  • To provide links between and liaise with parishes, deaneries, Synod Office, diocesan committees
  • To educate parish and diocese about the decisions and priorities of each other
  • To contribute personal skills and expertise freely, declaring any potential conflicts of interest
  • To build involvement on diocesan priorities and programmes in local areas
  • To act on and respond to requests for information from the Synod Office in a timely manner


  • Assumes mature Christian discipleship
  • Ability to communicate effectively
  • Ability to work within a team setting
  • Possess special expertise that serves the needs of the diocese (financial, legal, managerial, etc.)


  •  Three one-and-a-half day meetings annually, plus travel time
  • Approximately 8 hours prior to meeting for review of agenda material
  • Follow-up tasks after meeting as required


  • Two years for Regional Deans and Bishop’s appointees
  • Four years for Lay Stewards
  • Archdeacons are without a designated term and serve at the Bishop’s pleasure



  • Confidentiality in personnel and other specified matters
  • Communicate clearly with staff about requests/agenda items being presented at upcoming meetings; resources required to fulfill tasks etc.
  • Be mindful of the limitations of resources
  • Respect deadlines
  • Responsible to confirm attendance in advance
  • Be on time
  • Submit reports for and requests to the Executive Committee, adhering to submission deadlines
  • Participate with openness
  • Stay for the whole meeting
  • Deal with disagreements in healthy ways
  • Be loyal to the committee and its decisions


  • Provide information in a timely and polite manner
  • Give clear instructions about what information is to be shared, with levels of urgency noted
  • Provide operational guidelines to maintain consistency
  • Clarify various roles of members as required
  • Share the management of the diocese
  • Distribute minutes of the meetings promptly


  • Develop and implement manageable agendas
  • Ensure motions are presented in an appropriate manner
  • Manage discussion in a fair and respectful fashion
  • Work towards consensus          



Ø  Diocesan Staff, 619 Wellington Street East, Sault Ste. Marie, ON  P6A 2M6 705-256-5061

Ø  Diocesan website: (Canons, Constitution, Diocesan Policies, Contacts, Deadlines etc.)

Ø  Constitution Article 10:  Executive Committee (attached as Appendix 1)

Ø  Canon B-1:  The Executive Committee

Ø  The Anglican Church of Canada website: for information at the national level

Ø  The Provincial Synod website: for information at the provincial level

Ø  The Algoma as a means of sharing information



Personal Indemnification of Executive Committee Members

(Adopted by the Executive Committee November 2000.  Enacted by Synod 2001)


            That, pursuant to section eighty of the Corporations Act (R.S.). 1980, c. 95, s.80), the members of the Executive Committee, their heirs, executors and administrators, and estate and effects, respectively, are, by the consent of the Incorporated Synod indemnified and saved harmless out of the funds of the Company, from and against:


            (a) all costs, charges and expenses whatsoever that they sustain or incur in or about any action, suit or proceedings that is brought, commenced or prosecuted against him or her, for or in respect of any act, deed, matter or thing whatsoever, made, done or permitted by him or her, in or about the executive of the duties of his or her office; and


            (b) all other costs, charges and expenses that he or she sustains or incurs in or about or in relation to the affairs thereof, except such costs, charges or expenses as are occasioned by his or her own wilful neglect or default.


(February 2013 Executive Committee Resolution)

The Executive Committee of “The Incorporated Synod of the Diocese of Algoma” delegates:

a) To the Bishop the management of on-going litigation involving the Diocese; and

b) To the Bishop and the Officers of the Corporation designated in this Motion any and all authority and power to conclude agreements and settlements, expend funds, and to enter into binding contracts necessary to the carrying out of the management of litigation in the best interests of the Diocese and of “The Incorporated Synod of the Diocese of Algoma.”  The designated Officers of the Corporation are the Chancellor, the Registrar, the Executive Archdeacon and the Treasurer.

Guidelines for Diocesan Statistics (May 1984 Revised year by year as necessary)

The Diocesan statistics are used to monitor and shape the life of our Diocese and its parishes. The statistics are often requested in categories established by the National Church and used throughout Canada. Statistics should be submitted for each separate congregation. (Financial statistics can be reported on a parish basis rather than a congregational basis if there is a fully integrated parish financial statement.) Reliable statistics are a sound foundation for planning Mission and Ministry.

The following notes will help with the interpretation of the categories:

Number of families on the Role

– This should be the number of households with more than one person resident.

Number of Individuals on the Role

– This should be the number of households with one individual resident.

These two numbers should equal the number of households on the role. The number of households should include all three categories of:

– 1. Those who regularly attend

– 2. Those who occasionally attend.

– 3. Those who have a past pastoral association with the parish through baptism, marriage, confirmation, etc. Please include summer visitors who attend regularly enough to be on your parish list.

Total Members on the Parish Roll

– This will include the sum of all the baptized persons in the households on the parish list.

Number of Confirmed Persons on the Parish Roll

– In parishes where there are not up-to-date and accurate records, this number may have to be estimated by the incumbent.

Attendance during the Christmas Season

– Numbers reported should include the evening of December 24, through to the evening of December 25 plus any Christmas home or hospital communions, and are not to be included in average Sunday attendance reporting unless Christmas falls on a Sunday.

Communicants in the Easter Octave

– This number is the combined Sunday attendance of both Easter Sunday and the following Sunday, as well as Easter Saturday vigils, Easter home communions, and Easter services to shut-ins and seniors’ homes.

Number of Envelope Subscribers

Number of Pledges

– This should indicate how many households in your congregation have made a pledge or a subscription that was received by your congregation in the last year, or which was renewed in the last year.

Number of Other Identifiable Givers

– Please include people who make regular donations for church purposes but not one-time gifts for memorials, etc.

Average Total Attendance at Sunday Services

– Please include Sunday School attendees – children, children in the nursery, and adult staff looking after the Children

– Also include service participants in the chancel and sanctuary.

– When the incumbent signs the register, the incumbent is confirming the accuracy of the attendance figures. Periodic training sessions should be held for sidespeople to instruct them in making, confirming, and recording accurate attendance counts.

Average Attendance at Mid-Week Services

Average Attendance at “care homes” Services

– Parishes having regular mid-week services and mid-week services in “care homes” should report those figures as a separate category from average Sunday attendance.

Frequency of Services

– This category simply confirms whether the congregation meets weekly or less frequently, e.g. bi-weekly, monthly, summer only etc.

(February 1999)

Anyone acting as an officiant for a Service in a parish to which they are not licensed shall be paid by the parish for travel at $0.20 / km., out-of-pocket expenses, and an honorarium of $50.00 minimum for the first service and an honorarium of $25.00 minimum for each additional service in the same day.

(Policy enacted by the Synod 2005)

Place of Marriage

1. The normal place of marriage in the Anglican Church shall be an Anglican Church or chapel.

2. All Anglican weddings in the Diocese of Algoma shall be under the supervision of a licensed Algoma incumbent.

3. Under the general approval of the Bishop, incumbents may authorize a wedding ceremony in a place other than a church or chapel, where one or both of the parties are regularly part of an Anglican worshiping community, and in a setting where the sacred and public nature of Christian marriage will be upheld.

4. Where there is not a pre-existing, Anglican pastoral link with one of the parties, special permission for a ceremony outside of a church or chapel may be obtained from the Bishop, if in the opinion of the Bishop:

a) there is not a church or chapel within the proximity of the community where the marriage is to take place

b) the church or the chapel is inadequate in size

c) the church or chapel is inaccessible for intended service participants

d) there are reasons re the health of the couple or their immediate family

5. Where a marriage ceremony is held outside of a church or chapel, Matrimonial Commission procedures, liturgical requirements, and the directions of the Bishop are fully applicable.

6. The marriage should be registered in the parish marriage register of the incumbent under whose supervision the marriage was solemnized.

7. When an incumbent plans the place of marriage in what would generally be considered the “bounds” of another Algoma incumbent, s/he shall obtain the consent of the other incumbent beforehand. See also General Synod Canon on Marriage, Canon XXI, and Regulation 11 (c) The officiating minister must have obtained the consent of the incumbent of the parish in which the marriage is to be solemnized if the officiating minister is not licensed to that parish.

8. Algoma Clergy wishing to conduct weddings in other dioceses shall do so under the authority of a duly licensed Incumbent of that Diocese who will obtain permission from the Bishop of that Diocese.

Human Resources

(with reference to the Executive Committee policy adopted November 2010)

The Diocese of Algoma is committed to having ministries and places free from harassment and bullying.

This policy prohibits harassment or bullying by any member of the Diocese. The Ontario Human Rights Code and the Ontario Employment Standards Act protect diocesan and parish employees from harassment related to their work. The Criminal Code protects people from physical assault.

Wardens and Incumbents bear the primary responsibility for encouraging and maintaining a safe and healthy environment in our congregations and parishes. They are also responsible for the initial response to complaints of harassment or bullying. In ministries and other functions of the diocese not taking place in a specific congregation or parish, the person charged with the supervision of this activity carries the same responsibility and duties in responding to a complaint as are laid out for wardens and incumbents in this policy.

The policy does not apply to complaints of sexual misconduct which are dealt with under the provisions of Canon B-3.


Harassment: Harassment is repeated behaviour that demeans or embarrasses a person, and that a reasonable person should have known would be unwelcome. It includes actions (e.g. touching, pushing), comments (e.g. jokes, name calling, humiliating remarks), or displays (e.g. posters, cartoons).

Bullying: Bullying is a form of harassment in which a person repeatedly acts in a willfully abusive manner with the aim of hurting another individual with a callous disregard for the harm being caused. It is unwarranted behaviour that a reasonable person, having regard for all of the circumstances, would expect to victimize, ridicule, humiliate, undermine or threaten the person to whom it is directed.

Application of this policy:

Any parishioner, employee, or member of the clergy may make a complaint about harassment or bullying by another member of the Diocese. This policy applies to incidents of harassment or bullying that occur in the course of ministry or participation in diocesan sponsored ministries, organizations, activities, and programs whether or not they occur on diocesan property.

This policy will not be applied or interpreted in such a way as to detract from the right of those in supervisory roles to manage and discipline employees and volunteers in accordance with normal Anglican Church and diocesan practices.

This policy is to be interpreted and administered in a way that is consistent with the principles of religious freedom. Neither this policy in general, nor its definitions in particular, are to be applied in such a way as to detract from the right of staff, volunteers and parishioners to engage in discussion of potentially controversial matters such as age, race, politics, religion, sex and sexual orientation. This policy is to be interpreted and administered in a way that encourages respectful and frank discussion of congregational, parish, diocesan, and Church matters generally.

When a complaint is made:

In a congregation or parish a complaint of harassment or bullying should be made to a warden or the incumbent, and the wardens and incumbent should then deal with the matter jointly, though one of them may be designated to respond to the complainant or to take the lead in inquiring into the situation. A warden or incumbent should not deal with such a complaint alone. Complaints of harassment or bullying taking place in non-congregational or parish activities should be made to the supervisor responsible for that activity. The territorial Archdeacon should be informed that a complaint has been made, its general nature, and of the course-of-action in dealing with it.

A complaint against a warden or incumbent should be made to the territorial Archdeacon. A complaint against a territorial Archdeacon or other senior officer of the diocese should be made to the Bishop.

The first response to a complaint should be pastoral. Both the complainant and the person being complained about must be given ample opportunity to express their understanding of what has happened, and the hurt they are feeling, in an unhurried and private interview. Many incidents can be, and are, resolved at this level with both the complainant and the person being complained against saying that they are satisfied with the outcome that has been reached. The exceptions to using this approach arise when the circumstances are so serious that the initial response to the situation should be taken to a more formal level. At the congregational and parish level this decision should be made in consultation with the territorial Archdeacon.

If a pastoral resolution to the complaint is not possible, or a more formal initial response is called for, then at least two of the wardens and incumbent should meet with both the complainant and the person being complained against, and ask what has happened from their point of view. Either the complainant or the person being complained against may be accompanied by another person at this interview if they wish.

Those conducting these interviews should make notes of what is said. This is important because a complaint that must be dealt with at this level may result in the formal discipline of clergy, the formal cautioning or termination of employees, or the dismissal of volunteers. Care should be taken to record objectively what each person says in these interviews without including the personal views of those conducting the interview. Depending on the circumstances, it may be advisable to have the territorial Archdeacon take a part in these interviews. The notes made should be treated as confidential and carefully preserved. These notes should be dated and signed by those conducting the interview and by the person being interviewed. Others may have witnessed the events described in the complaint. If so, it may be appropriate to also speak with these witnesses and make a note as to what they said about this.

When such a formal complaint resolution process is necessary the territorial Archdeacon will inform the Executive Archdeacon of what is occurring and consult with him as seems appropriate. If the matter cannot be resolved between the complainant and the person being complained against, then the Bishop, or a person designated by the Bishop to deal with the matter, will determine what remedial measures, if any, should be taken.

1. Clergy and lay people in full time stipendiary pastoral appointments are eligible for two months sabbatical leave, with full pay, after seven years of continuous full time ministry and, again, for every five years of continuous full time ministry thereafter. A sabbatical leave cannot be taken during the first two years of an incumbency.

2. Permission to take a sabbatical leave is granted by the Bishop after discussion of the intent and the plan of the sabbatical leave. The Bishop will discuss the proposed sabbatical leave with the Wardens where this involves a parish appointment so as to be able to assess the effect of the proposed sabbatical leave on the ministry of the parish.

3. In exceptional circumstances the Bishop may grant permission to extend a sabbatical leave for longer than two months, though this must be with the consent of the Wardens and Vestry.

4. Those planning a sabbatical leave shall provide the Wardens, the Archdeacon, and the Bishop with five months advance notice of their intention to take this leave. As part of this notice the Bishop will be provided with the details of the study for which the leave is being requested.

5. Those taking a sabbatical leave do so on the condition that they will continue in their present appointment for at least one year following the end of the sabbatical leave. In exceptional circumstances the Bishop may set aside this requirement.

6. The Incumbent and Wardens are responsible for arranging, in consultation with the Bishop, for ministry to continue in the parish during the time the Incumbent is on sabbatical leave. The parish will pay for this continuing ministry.

7. A report on the sabbatical leave will be submitted to Wardens and to the Bishop within six weeks after the end of the sabbatical leave.

Note: Funds to assist in this sabbatical leave may be available from the Continuing Education Fund, and the parish or the Bishop may be able to assist.

(June 2016)

1. Clergy and lay people in full time stipendiary pastoral appointments are entitled to two weeks of study leave with pay each year. Clergy and lay people in part time stipendiary pastoral appointments may be granted study leave on a pro-rated basis at the Bishop’s discretion.

2. Those planning a study leave shall provide the Wardens, the Archdeacon, and the Bishop three months advance notice of their intention to take this leave. As part of this notice the Bishop will be provided with the details of the study for which the leave is being taken.

3. Those taking a study leave are responsible for arranging for ministry to continue in the parish during the leave and this shall be done in consultation with the Wardens.

4. Annual study leave is not cumulative.

Note: Funds to assist in this sabbatical leave may be available from the Continuing Education Fund, and the parish or the Bishop may be able to assist.

Police Record Checks (March 2011)

Where the Diocesan Screening in Faith process requires a Police Records Check, that check will be done every three years.

Incumbent Responsible for the Screening-in-Faith Program in the Parish (May 2014)

Canon H – 5 (Screening in Faith) requires that “every parish that runs programs for services for children, youth, or vulnerable adults shall implement a screening program.” The Canon, further, requires that an Annual Report on this screening program “be published annually in the Vestry Reports.. and also be submitted annually to the Synod Office and the Territorial Archdeacon by February 28th for the preceding year.”

To clarify any uncertainty in implementing the requirements of Canon H – 5 (Screening in Faith), it is the responsibility of the parish Incumbent to ensure that the program is carried out in the parish and that the required reporting is done. Others in the parish may undertake the carrying out of some or all of the program and the preparation of the Annual Report, however, the final responsibility for this rests with the parish Incumbent.

This Executive Committee requests that the Bishop instruct parish Incumbents to ensure that a screening program is carried out in the parish and that the required reporting is done.


(November 2001)

This policy has been adopted and placed in force by the Executive Committee of the Diocese to govern the way apportionment is calculated as a percentage of “parish income from open offerings and identifiable offerings toward the operating expenses …”.

Parish monies that are exempt from apportionment are

1. Rental income, investment income, and grants from the Diocese or other parishes;

2. Income from the fund raising activities of the parish, and official parish organizations such as the ACW, men’s organizations, youth groups, etc.

3. Flow-through givings to other registered charities or overseas mission activities;

4. Special appeals for major capital expenditures;

A capital expenditure is:

1) Any new building or structural alteration of a church, rectory, or parish hall, regardless of cost;

2) The replacement of an existing item, piece of equipment or structure with an expected life of more than five years, or cost of 10 percent or more of parish apportionment.

5. Special projects which have been authorized by the Diocesan Executive Committee (Income applied to the salary component of a curacy, internship, Church Army officer, youth worker, or pastoral worker, if authorized by the Bishop are deemed a special project by the Diocesan Executive Committee.) Refer, as well, to the Curacy Exemption Policy.

6. Borrowed funds for operational or capital purposes.

7. Funds generated from the sale of capital assets.

8. The capital of bequests / endowments for special purposes designated by the donor

9. GST and PST rebates

Any monies held outside of the operational budget for whatever purpose must be fully disclosed and reported to the Diocesan Treasurer annually with the annual returns.

Amounts that are not exempt from apportionment

The capital from any reserve or trust which is brought into income and spent on operating expenses is assessable.

(April 2003)

The policy grants the following exemptions to a parish that has a curacy:

1. Exemption from apportion of income raised from special projects/appeals for the salary component of a curacy will be:

a. First full calendar year – 100%

b. Second full calendar year – 66.7%

c. Third full calendar year – 33.3%

Where the curate is engaged part way through a year, the aforesaid income shall also receive a 100% exemption for the part year.

2. The apportionment to the parish in respect of the year during the initial and subsequent years of the engagement of the curate shall be the greater of:

d. The apportionment as calculated in the regular manner taking into account the aforesaid exemptions, and

e. The average of the apportionment for the three years immediately preceding the year of the engagement of the curate.

The foregoing assistance to a parish shall normally not be available again to that parish until seven years have passed since this assistance was last received by that parish.

(April 2002)

That ordinarily apportionable parish income not be apportionable if that money is used for the mission support of another congregation or parish within the Diocese of Algoma; that the term “mission support” is to refer to money sent to another congregation or parish to aid in paying its operations or stipend coat, when it is having difficulty in doing so; further that this mission support money not be apportionable In the receiving congregation or parish.

(November 2006)

Congregations receiving undesignated bequests may use this money to pay down arrears from previous years to the Diocese, or to pay down their line-of-credit at the bank (or other financial institution), without being assessed apportionment on this money.

(June 1997)

That the Executive Committee present a proposed two-year diocesan budget to the 1999 and subsequent Synods, and that these estimates be reviewed at Deanery Councils at the meeting prior to the Synod.

(Note from the Chancellor, November, 1992)

It is for the Executive Committee, and not the Synod, to spend money and to authorize individual expenditures of the Incorporated Synod’s funds. However, the members of the Synod have the right to debate and question those past, present, and proposed future expenditures and enact resolutions setting the general direction of these expenditures.

The Executive Committee should present a proposed Budget to the Synod. Debate would then take place on the Budget. Synod motions which entail the expenditure of money should be expressed as “recommendations that the Executive Committee consider…”

(February 2000)

1. That the current Car Loan Fund be renamed the Church Workers Transportation Fund;

2. That the assets and liabilities in the Car Loan Fund be transferred to the Church Workers Transportation Fund;

3. That the Bishop and Treasurer be authorized to transfer cash between the Archbishop Wright Building Fund and the Church Workers Transportation Fund as the need arises;

4. That with respect to loans made by the Church Works Transportation Fund, the interest rate on all loans currently outstanding be 6 percent;

5. That the Executive Committee set the interest rate for the Church Workers Transportation Fund from time to time; and

6. That the current Rules and Regulations of the Car Loan Fund be made applicable to the new Church Workers Transportation Fund.

(November 2006)

That the operations, management, and oversight of the Electronic Offering Program become part of the Synod Office operations; policy control to rest with the Executive Committee, and operational management and supervision to rest with the Treasurer.

(February 1998)

That public liability insurance and related coverages (i.e. those other property damage, theft, etc.) be mandatory for all parishes in the Diocese that that such coverage be maintained through the Diocese’s agent so that the Diocese can maintain consistency / uniformity in coverage and also enjoy potential cost savings by having a larger group being placed. This this insurance be placed through the Diocesan Treasurer and the policy programs be apportioned out to the individual parishes on a fair and equitable basis.

Insurance (February 2005)

That effective December 31,2005, all parishes within the Diocese of Algoma are required to participate in the master insurance program arranged by the Synod Office, unless documentation is given that adequate alternative property insurance is in place in the view of the Diocesan Insurance Committee.

(November 2013)


a) A Mission and Ministry Fund be established and;

b) That the Treasurer, in consultation with the Administration and Finance Committee review the funds held by The Incorporated Synod of the Diocese of Algoma and, where appropriate, consolidate into the Mission and Ministry Fund those funds presently held separately for which there is no reason to continue to do so; and

c) That the Treasurer, where there is a question as to whether or not a separately held fund constitutes a Trust in law, consult with the Chancellor. If the Chancellor finds that the fund is not a Trust in law, then the Treasurer, in consultation with the Administration and Finance Committee, will review such funds and consolidate them into the Mission and Ministry Fund where there is no other reason to continue to hold them separately.

(November 2005)

That the North Shore of Lake Superior (Schreiber to Wawa) be made a special mission district, and mission support grants be allowed to less than full-time ministry.

(October 1998)

As measures to encourage / facilitate congregations to be current with their payments to the Synod Office with respect to apportionment and payroll reimbursement. That the Synod Office will facilitate congregations to obtain lines-of-credit which are guaranteed by the Diocese. Lines-of-credit to be guaranteed by the Diocese to be negotiated on a parish by parish basis, to the appropriate limits.

Parish Lines-of-Credit (March 2007)

Lines-of-credit that are extended to parishes in the Algoma Diocese are to be no more than $15,000, and are to be approved by the Diocesan Executive Committee. Because the Diocese owns the property which secures these lines-of-credit, the amount of the line must be reported the Diocesan office.

If a parish makes a choice to increase the amount over the maximum, whoever signs for the increase is liable as the signer. A parish cannot make a charge against Church property, and if an Incumbent or wardens have signed for an increase they would have to cover the difference should the line not be paid.

Note: Extract from a Letter from the Chancellor in regard to parish loans (March 2004)

“The Incumbent and Wardens may be required to sign a loan document in the course of a parish loan. If they are required to sign such a document it should be made clear in the document that they are signing ‘without personal liability.’ The parish should further be sure that its resources are such that it will be able to maintain any loans in good standing until they are discharged.”

(February 2001) That this Executive Committee enacts an administrative policy covering parish and affiliates’ loan guarantees in excess of $50,000: 1. Annual audited financial statements will be provided within four (4) months of the fiscal year end; 2. Subordination agreements will be signed, channeling all operating surplus funds to debt reduction unless specific consent is received from this Committee.

(1993 Executive Committee Resolution)

That, effective August 1, 1992, for the purpose of determining eligibility for a possible grant from the Clergy Retirement Assistance Fund, normal length of service within the Diocese be ten years, and that those retiring with a length of service less than ten years, if any, be pro-rated accordingly.

Retirement Assistance Fund (Clergy) (1993 Executive Committee Resolution)

(Transfer of clergy to another diocese) That clergy who have served in the Diocese in excess of the qualifying ten-year period be provided with an Undertaking by the Diocese that they be eligible to receive any eligible Grant from the Retirement Assistance Fund, provided that their scheduled date of retirement is not more than five years in the future, and that the receiving Diocese does not have an additional retirement assistance which the person would also receive.

(1994 Executive Committee Resolution) That the benefits extended to clergy on retirement be given to full time lay Synod Office employees who have worked for the Diocese of Algoma for at least ten years.

(May 2004)

The Christian mission and ministry which is central to the work of our Diocese is carried out, primarily, in our congregations. Many of our rural and isolated congregations have a difficult time financially supporting this work because there are often not enough financial supporters in their area to provide the necessary funds. It is part of our Anglican tradition, rooted in scripture from the earliest days of the Church, that congregations with greater financial resources should help those congregations not able to carry the entire financial cost of the work because of their smaller numbers.

The limited financial resources available to the Diocese mean that we must concentrate on supporting our rural and isolated congregations. At the same time we have had and will probably continue to have, from time to time, urban congregations which are having difficulty operating on a financially self-sustaining basis because they cannot afford the model of ministry they are using.

The Diocese has a responsibility to assist our urban congregations which find themselves in financial difficulty to move to a financially self-sustaining model of ministry. In order to carry out this responsibility the Executive Committee enacts the following Policy:


Urban congregation: Any congregation within a community having the municipal status of a city, and within fifteen kilometres of another congregation. This distance is to be measured as the most direct vehicle driving distance by roadway between a church building used regularly for Sunday worship by one congregation and a church building used regularly for Sunday worship by another congregation.

Arrears: Any amount of apportionment and / or stipend and benefits left unpaid at the end of the financial year, and any non-current loans of the Archbishop Wright Building Fund.

The Ministry Plan:

1. As of the date of the enactment of this Policy by the Executive Committee, any urban congregation which is in arrears for two years, and any urban congregation which subsequently becomes in arrears for a period of two years, will be assisted by the Diocese in restructuring its ministry so that it operates on a financially self-sustaining basis.

2. This period of re-structuring consultation and planning will be completed within two years of the date upon which the urban congregation comes within the provisions of this policy, and the new financially self-sustaining model of ministry will be put into place and become effective no later than two years from the date upon which the urban congregation comes within the provisions of this policy.

3. The three Parties which shall consult with each other concerning the development of the Ministry Plan are the Congregation, the Deanery, and the Diocese. The Incumbent and Wardens shall act on behalf of the Congregation. The Archdeacon, Regional Dean and Lay Stewards shall act on behalf of the Deanery. The Bishop shall act on behalf of the Diocese. The Bishop may appoint such members of the Diocesan Staff as the Bishop thinks appropriate to act on his behalf.

4. The Ministry Plan will be developed by the Diocese and Deanery after considering the information provided and the views expressed by the Congregation during the consultation with the Congregation.

Clergy Protection:

5. To extend the fairest protection and advance notice to the Incumbent of the Congregation, and subject to the required review by the Bishop, the Incumbent shall be given the notice of termination of appointment, prescribed under the terms of the Appointments Canon and the Letter of Appointment, as soon, as may be practical after the date on which the Congregation comes within the provisions of this policy.

6. The Bishop shall discuss with the Incumbent the re-structuring of the ministry of the Congregation and consider the Incumbent’s opinion as to how best to re-structure the ministry of the Congregation so that it operates on a financially self-sustaining basis within the prescribed period of time.

7. Nothing in this Policy shall abrogate or infringe upon any of the powers or responsibilities of the Bishop in regard to clerical appointments.

Implementation of the Ministry Plan:

8. The Ministry Plan shall be implemented in such a manner, and at such times, and in such stages if any, as are detailed in the Ministry Plan.

9. In the event of a difference of opinion, which cannot be resolved between those representing the Deanery and those representing the Diocese, over provisions of the Ministry Plan during the development of the Ministry Plan, the Bishop shall consider the views expressed by both Parties; the provisions the Bishop thinks wise, or such other provisions as the Bishop thinks wise, shall then be the provisions which are made part of the Ministry Plan.


(adopted June 2016) The Church is not a building; it is the Body of Christ, a people gathered and sent by God to live in the world as a sign, instrument and foretaste of the Kingdom of God. The Household of God is composed of the baptized, not bricks and mortar. Thus, as church, a congregation may be able to exist and serve faithfully without a dedicated building. Nevertheless, property and facilities usually play a valuable role in the life and ministry we share as church. As a result, much of a congregation’s energy and resources can find themselves concerned with property matters. It is important, therefore, to make sure that our buildings and property contribute to, rather than hinder or distract from, the vibrancy and sustainability of the Diocese and its congregations. Among the chief responsibilities of diocesan leadership and congregational officials alike is the stewardship of our assets and resources. It is their responsibility to ensure that decisions about property and facilities are directed toward enriching or expanding mission and ministry. Included in this charge is the need to administer, protect, or enhance assets for the sake of supporting or resourcing future initiatives consistent with the vision and vocation we share as a diocese. To this end, Executive Committee policies relating to property and buildings shall be interpreted and applied in conformity with the following principles provided that, in the event of any inconsistency between this policy and any other policy, this policy shall prevail:
  • Property and buildings are a means by which to carry out the mission entrusted to the church.
  • Decisions about the acquisition, modification, and sale of property and buildings are based upon how these actions further the mission that all of us share as a diocese.
  • All property and buildings in the Diocese are owned by The Incorporated Synod of the Diocese of Algoma. The Executive Committee manages the financial assets of the Diocese, including those realized from the sale of property.
  • Congregations, particularly their officials, manage the use, maintenance, and upkeep of the property and buildings committed to their charge.
  • Significant financial expenditures on the property or facilities of a congregation are approved by the Executive Committee, drawing on the advice of the Deanery Officials working with the congregation. Likewise, depending on their nature, significant alterations to the property or facilities of a congregation are approved by either the Bishop or Executive Committee.
  • The Archbishop Wright Fund exists to provide funding to assist congregations with their property and buildings under the policies established by the Executive Committee.

(November 2006, revised January 2015)


1. A parish requiring a loan from the Fund will prepare a “Loan Application Request” to the Synod office.

2. The Parish will include with the Loan Application Request:

a) A schedule of Project cost financing for which the loan is requested comprising:

– one-half cash on hand (minimum); and

– one-half loan from the Fund (maximum or $100,000 whichever is less)

– one-quarter pledges (secured)

to secure a loan from the Fund

b) Comparative financial statements (statements of incomes & expenses and balance sheets, the latter if available) for the five year period immediately preceding the year of the loan request;

c) Comparative financial statements of incomes and expenses (forecast) for the year of the loan request and the succeeding four years (which include the monthly blended principal and interest payments on the loan from the Fund for the period immediately following the time of completion of the project);

d) Appropriate narratives/assumptions made to explain changes from past actual figures to those figures shown in the forecast.

3. The Executive Committee will decide for or against the loan request. (The Executive Committee may recommend modifications of the loan request to the Parish; if acceptable to the Parish, then the Parish would indicate its approval to the Executive Committee).

4. If the loan request is approved by the Executive Committee, the Parish will prepare the “Undertaking for Repayment of Loan” and submit it to the Synod office.

NOTE: Various forms as mentioned above may be obtained from the Synod Office


Factors to be reviewed by the Parish, the Investment Committee, Diocesan Officials, and the Executive Committee, but not to be limited to, are:

1) The age of congregation. Is there a good mix of young, involved couples and other members on a fixed income? Is the income of the Parish fairly evenly spread out, or are two or three members the main donors? What happens when the chief donors move or die? Will this cause financial hardship?

2) Is there a broad base for fund-raising or is it the focus of a few members who will eventually burn out? Will the repayment of loans become the chief focus of the congregation?

3) What Level of ministry is required? Will it be full-time or a shared ministry? Should a change of ministry be required, will it create a financial hardship for the congregation with regards to interim ministry, or moving of personnel, etc.?

4) By attempting to pay back the loan amount(s), will this necessitate not paying other obligations such as stipend, etc.? Will this in turn force the congregation to apply to the Diocese for forgiveness of loans, reduced ministry or shared ministry?

5) Most importantly, is this a one-industry area? Is there diversity of employment? If the major employer shuts down, will there still be a sound economic base available to sustain the givings needed by the congregation to meet its financial obligations?

6) Is the project under the leadership of a strong, charismatic clergy? If so, what happens financially to the parish should this person be transferred or move on, or burn out?

7) Would it be beneficial for the members of the Investment Committee to meet personally with the congregation? (Quite frequently, what you read on paper and what you experience in person or two very different perspectives.)

(Revised September 2005, updated 2014)

Cemeteries, like all Church property in the diocese, are owned by the Incorporated Synod of the Diocese of Algoma. The local Incumbent and Wardens, that is the Officers of the Parish, act as agents of the Synod in managing the affairs of the cemetery. A Cemetery Board or Committee is often appointed to carry out the actual day-to-day management of the cemetery. The Board or Committee, however, is assisting the Incumbent and Wardens in doing this, and responsibility rests with these Officers of the Parish.

A cemetery must be operated in conformity with the Funeral, Burial and Cremation Services Act 2002. This includes filing an Annual Report with the Cemeteries Regulation Unit of the Ministry of Government Services. These are some provisions of this Act and its Regulations that parishes operating cemeteries should be aware of are:

– “Cemetery” means land set aside for the interment of human remains. Human remains include ashes. Cremated remains can be interred on church property, so long as the site is first established as a cemetery. The Ministry can check their records to establish whether a particular site has been registered as a cemetery in the past. There is a small fee to re-establish a site as a cemetery, and reporting requirements must be met.

– If human remains are routinely scattered on the same spot, that site must be established as a cemetery. Scattering gardens need to be properly licensed and fall under the regulations governing care and maintenance funds. Parishes are advised to keep records of where ashes are scattered.

– Where human remains (including ashes) are interred outside of designated cemetery land, the place of interment then becomes a “burial site” and is subject to the regulations governing unapproved burial sites. Compliance would require the area to be delineated by boundaries and be established as a cemetery.

– The process for closing a cemetery can be lengthy. Closure requires that all remains must be disinterred, and all remains and related artefacts must be moved to an approved cemetery. If it is in the public interest to do so, the land may then be decertified, and re- registered with the Land Registry Office. Other requirements include inserting a notice in newspapers declaring that any person having an interest (which may include interment rights holders, relatives, and native people) may submit to the Registrar any objection. They have the right to appeal and this can go to a tribunal.

– Municipalities do not automatically take over a cemetery. The Registrar may apply to a judge to declare a cemetery abandoned, in which case the municipality would take over. The onus is on the owner to prove that care and maintenance can no longer be provided.

– The Act requires that the operator of a cemetery interring bodies establish a Care and Maintenance Fund. Only interest from a Care and Maintenance fund can be used. Provided that it is not contrary to the public interest, a cemetery owner may apply for an exemption from the requirement to establish a Care and Maintenance Fund, or for a reduction in the required amount. To make this application, the owner must have the support of the local municipality, to whom responsibility for care and maintenance would fall if the owner proved unable to fulfill these responsibilities.

– If the operator is interring only cremated remains, there is no requirement to collect Care and Maintenance Funds. However, if fees are charged, a Care and Maintenance Fund must be established and contributions must be made to it. It is also up to an owner to maintain the cemetery in perpetuity. So if there is no care and maintenance fund set up, a problem could arise if, for instance, a church with a cemetery closed.

– The current Act, passed in 2002, removed the previous requirement that Care and Maintenance Funds be held by a Trust Company or Credit Union.

– Fees for markers are set out in the regulations, except for flat markers of a prescribed size. Such fees must be deposited to the care and maintenance fund.

(march 2005, Revised December 2005)

1. A chapel is a place of worship that, when it is so designated by the Bishop, does not have all of the normal responsibilities of a congregation.

2. To be a chapel, the building would require a patron parish or organization who would assure that the building would be maintained, all expenses met, and adequate insurance coverage carried. Where there is not some group to fulfill the role of patron, the building should be closed.

3. All chapels will be under the general supervision of an incumbent appointed by the Bishop.

4. Worshippers in a chapel may, in some cases, with the permission and at the direction of the Bishop, gather in an annual meeting to consider the affairs of the chapel and to elect a steward to work with the incumbent and the patron parish in furthering the best interests of the chapel. In such a case, a second steward may be appointed by the incumbent.

Disadvantages of being a Chapel:

1. Chapels normally do not have the resources for regular Sunday worship, the conduct of worship by a cleric, or the levels of supervision needed for program and activities.

2. Future decisions about the use or disposition of the chapel are in the hands of the patron parish or organization, Diocesan Executive Committee, and the Bishop.

3. Givings to a chapel would not normally be eligible for an Income Tax Receipt. Gifts to a patron parish would be eligible for a Tax Receipt but would also be subject to diocesan apportionment.

4. Chapels are ineligible to elect delegates to Synod (Collegiate Chapels excepted).

5. A Chapel is not simply a congregation in a stage of closing. A chapel needs a clear purpose, be it pastoral, historical, communal, or geographical.


A congregation is a worshipping community that is a component of a parish that:

a. is self-reliant with respect to its share of incumbency (or has approved grant assistance),

b. provides full pastoral care,

c. meets its obligations beyond the parish,

d. cares for its own buildings and properties,

e. normally has the expectation of Sunday worship, and

f. elects delegates to Synod through parish procedures.

A chapel is a place of worship that:

a. has a patron parish or a patron organization that assures all obligations are met for property, buildings, upkeep, and insurance,

b. has no regular expectation of services by a clergy person,

c. has its future resting with the patron parish or organization, the Executive Committee, and the Bishop,

d. is under the care of an incumbent assigned by the Bishop (usually from the patron parish), and

e. may elect a steward and hold an annual meeting to advise the patron parish, incumbent, and Executive Committee

Mission Points and Out Stations: A mission or an out station is a worshiping community that:

a. has an incumbent appointed by the Bishop,

b. expects to grow,

c. meets its own obligations within and beyond the parish or which has its obligations

within and beyond met by a sponsoring congregation,

d. cares for its own buildings and properties or has its buildings and properties cared for by a sponsoring congregation,

e. normally has the expectation of regular worship, although not always on a Sunday,

f. elects delegates to Synod through parish procedures


1. All donations to the Anglican Church for ongoing work are eligible for a tax receipt, and

are subject to apportionment.

2. The apportionment is payable by the congregation or the religious charity which issues the tax receipt.

3. All churches that receive monies must exercise full financial transparency and accountability to the Bishop, the deanery officials, the Synod, and the Executive Committee

4. Collegiate Chapels are those attached to educational institutions in which the Incumbent is appointed and licensed by the Bishop, and which pay for the physical maintenance and operational costs of the Chapel, and the stipend of the Chaplain. Collegiate Chapels may hold Annual Vestry Meetings and be represented by Synod delegates

Church buildings: alterations, furnishings, and the sanctuary (October 1993)

Alterations to the sanctuary of a Church building and / or its furnishing require the permission of the Bishop. The Bishop’s permission is also required for the introduction, alteration, or removal of stained glass windows.

Closure of Church Buildings (November 2006)

There is a distinction between the closure of a church building, and the dissolution of a congregation which is governed by Canon H-G on the Establishment and Dissolution of Congregations and Parishes. This policy refers to the physical closure of the church building, the dispersal of its assets, and its deconsecration and setting apart for other uses.


1. When a congregation wishes to close, it shall first consult with the Territorial Archdeacon and Deanery Officials to consider other options.

2. When a congregation wishes to close, it shall hold a special vestry meeting called in accordance with the Canons of the Diocese of Algoma.

3. A motion of closure shall be passed and recorded in the minutes. This motion must pass by a two-thirds majority of voters qualified to vote at a vestry.

4. The motion of closure shall be copied to the Territorial Archdeacon, the Deanery Officials, and the Diocesan Treasurer for inclusion on the Executive Committee agenda.

5. The Executive Committee shall consider the proposal to close, and if it approves of the congregation’s decision, the closure will proceed.

6. The congregation may then hold a Service of Thanksgiving for the work and ministry that had gone before in the church.

7. After all the assets have been dispersed, the Territorial Archdeacon, acting on the Bishop’s Mandate, shall deconsecrate the church.

8. Once this closure process is completed the now vacant church building and real property with it should be disposed of by sale as quickly as possible except where the deanery officials decide to make an exception to this because of the particular circumstances relating to that building. (section 8 added February 2013)


1. The wardens shall remain in office until the assets of the church have been dispersed, and the building sold or otherwise disposed of.

2. The wardens shall work with the Deanery Officials to oversee the dispersal of assets, the sale or disposition of the building, and other tasks necessary under this policy.

3. If there are no wardens, or if there is a vestry of less than six persons, the Deanery Officials shall carry out the tasks required in this policy.

Financial Matters

1. The wardens shall pay any outstanding invoices, and shall then change the address for accounts such as hydro, fuel, and insurance to that of the Diocese of Algoma.

2. The wardens shall send to the Treasurer of the Diocese of Algoma the contents of all bank accounts, as well as all financial books and records.

3. The Treasurer of the Diocese of Algoma shall set up a reserve fund with the balance of the congregation’s funds, out of which shall be paid any remaining or ongoing bills.

4. Insurance shall be kept in place until the building is sold or otherwise disposed of, to be paid from the fund noted in #3 immediately above.

5. The Treasurer of the Diocese of Algoma shall recover costs associated with the payment of bills, over and above the amount existing in the fund mentioned in #3 above, from proceeds from the sale of the building and land.

6. The Executive of the Diocese of Algoma may also recover, from the sale of the building and land, the amount of the debts assumed by the diocese in its financial records in the ten-year period preceding the year of closure including the year of closure.

7. The wardens, and if there be none, the Deanery Officials, shall make provision for the safeguarding and security of the church building while it is vacant.

Other Books and Records

1. The vestry books, registers of baptisms, confirmations, marriages, and burials, the minute books, and other non-financial records shall be transferred to the Diocesan Archives at Algoma University.

Other Assets

1. An inventory shall be made of all church contents such as furnishings, linens, memorials, stained glass, office equipment, etc. This inventory shall also show where they are dispersed.

2. If the altar and font are not dispersed to another church, they shall be burned unless there is a reverential use.

3. In the consideration of the dispersal of memorials, any remaining family of the donors should be consulted if they can be found.

4. The disposition of a congregation’s remaining assets, after all financial obligations have been met, up to an amount of $25,000, shall be determined by the Deanery Officials in consultation with the wardens.

5. In deciding as to the disposition of assets, the Deanery Officials and the wardens shall take into account:

a. any requests from the incumbent, wardens, or vestry of the continuing congregations of a multi-point parish that the assets be transferred to them;

b. any significant associations or links between the closed congregation and the continuing congregations of the parish;

c. the respective contributions of the congregations or parish, and the Diocese, to the acquisition of the assets in question; and

d. other financial support provided by the Diocese to the parish concerned.

6. All remaining funds shall be paid to the Diocese of Algoma.


1. Once the church has been cleared of all contents, it should be deconsecrated, on Mandate of the Bishop of Algoma.

(February 2013)

Church buildings that have been formally closed, or church buildings that are only used seasonally, should be properly locked and otherwise secured to prevent trespass and damage.  The exception to this requirement is church buildings in those congregations where it is a matter of local custom to leave church buildings unlocked on principle and where, in the judgment of the Deanery Officials, the congregation wishes to continue this custom.

(February 2008)



Approval for buildings and structural alterations:

1. No Church, rectory or other building may be erected until:

(i) the site of the proposed building has been conveyed to the Synod or the Bishop of the Diocese; and

(ii) the plans, specifications, and statements of local or other contributions have been submitted to and considered by the Archdeacon and Regional Dean, who will submit them, if necessary, to the Bishop and the Executive Committee for their approval.

2. This canon applies to all structural alterations or improvements in churches, rectories, or other buildings, and the rearrangement of church or chancel furniture.

Accordingly, “The Diocese is, by virtue of its incorporating statute, the legal owner of all assets of the Anglican Church in the Diocese so that in legal terms, Parishes, as such, do not have legal title to any assets.” (Ken Lawson, the Chancellor, by letter dated November 24th, 2003)

Therefore, it is imperative that any acquisition, construction, renovation, or repair expenditure exceeding $25,000 be only undertaken by a Parish with approval of the Executive Committee and in accordance with the following policy.

Policy to govern major property expenditures undertaken by parishes

1. Parish requests Architect to provide “preliminary drawings and budget.”

2. Parish resolves scope and cost of project.

3. Parish prepares and submits “Property Matters Request Form” to Synod office with a copy of “preliminary drawings and budget.”

4. Synod office submits “Property Matters Request Form” to the Executive Committee for approval.

5. Upon approval of the Executive Committee, the Synod office requests Architect to prepare Tender Documents.

6. Architect provides copies of Tender Documents to Synod office and to Parish for review.

7. Architect advertises requesting tenders.

8. Synod office officials and Parish representatives to be present at tender openings

and selection of successful contractor.

9. Change orders to the contract or to the project made only on approval of Parish and Synod office.

10. Parish appoints appropriate Parishioner to ensure project cost does not exceed approved budget.

(March 2004)

1. Mortgages involving parish property must be signed by the Diocese (The Incorporated Synod of the Diocese of Algoma) as the title to all property in the Diocese is held by the Incorporated Synod.

2. Normally, in day to day mortgage transactions, a person signing a mortgage is not only pledging the security of the property being mortgaged but is also signing a personal covenant to repay, so that in the event that there is a default and the realization of the security does not result in a sufficient amount of money to repay the loan and related costs, the lender is in a position to sue the mortgagor for any deficiency. This personal covenant to repay is a standard part of any mortgage document.

For obvious reasons the Diocese cannot be in a position where it is obliged on a covenant to repay with respect to every mortgage given by a parish for a loan. It is diocesan policy that when the Incorporated Synod gives a mortgage it strikes the personal covenant in the mortgage. The effect of this is that all the diocese is giving with the mortgage is the security. If there is a default, the lender would be entitled to realize on the security of the real estate, but would not have any other recourse against the Incorporated Synod.

This should be made known to any prospective lender at the outset of any discussions regarding the obtaining of a loan.

3. Incumbents and Wardens of Parishes should be mindful of their own personal liability. Often the Incumbent and Wardens will be required to sign the mortgage document or some other loan document or documents in the course of a parish loan. If they are required to sign such a document it should be made clear in the document that they are signing “without personal liability”.

Note: Extract from a Letter from the Chancellor in regard to mortgages (March 2004)

“The Diocese, by virtue of its incorporating statute, is the legal owner of all assets. As a result, if a mortgage is to be given on real estate involving a parish church or other church property, the mortgage must be signed by the Diocese. Normally a person signing a mortgage pledges the security of the property and signs a personal covenant to repay, so that in the event that there is a default and the realization of the security does not result in a sufficient amount of money to repay the loan and related costs, the lender is in a position to sue the mortgagor. It is Diocesan policy that when the Diocese signs a mortgage, it strikes the personal covenant in the mortgage. If there is a default, the lender would be entitled to realize only the security of the real estate. This should be made know to any prospective lender.”

(February 2013)

The Property Committee is a sub-committee of the Executive Committee. It is made up of members of the Executive Committee elected by the Executive Committee.

The Property Committee deals only with urgent property matters with a spending limit of $50,000 per application. The Executive Committee has delegated to the Property Committee the power to either grant approval on behalf of the Executive Committee or to hold the matter over for consideration by the Executive Committee itself.

Process for the Purchase of Property at the Parish level

1) A Vestry Motion approving of the purchase is required. It should be noted that title to all property in the Diocese is held by The Incorporated Synod of the Diocese of Algoma. The Diocesan Canons recognize only congregational Vestries. Some parishes have what are called ‘Parish Vestries’, but these are a matter of local custom and convenience and have no standing under the diocesan Canons. If the title to the property is to be held by the Diocese for a single congregation in a multi-point parish, the approval of that congregational Vestry is needed. If the property is to be held by the Diocese for all of the congregations in the parish, then the approval of each of the congregational Vestries is needed.

2) A Vestry Motion approving of the use of any money held in Trust for the Parish by the Diocese when that money is being used for the purchase.

3) Deanery officials’ approval of steps one and two.

4) Executive approval of steps one and two.

5) The purchase is made in the name of “The Incorporated Synod of the Diocese of Algoma”.

8) The offer to purchase is faxed to the Synod Office at 705-946-1860 for signatures and is then faxed back.

9) The parish retains a lawyer who handles the purchase.

10) Signing authorities for The Incorporated Synod of the Diocese of Algoma are:

a) The Bishop of Algoma or Commissary

b) The Diocesan Treasurer, Chancellor, or Registrar

11) The parish’s lawyer couriers the legal documents to the Synod Office (619 Wellington St. East., Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, P6A 2M6) for signatures.

12) The Synod Office couriers back the required documentation with a cheque “in trust”.

13) The lawyer completes the transaction and sends all documents to the Synod Office for safe keeping in the property records.

(February 1995, updated 2015)

a) That the proceeds of any Rectory sales be held in a separate account so that they may be more easily identified, and that normally they be used for the benefit of the parish concerned as set out below.

b) That the Capital from, such Rectory sale Funds be normally spent for purposes of the parish’s Capital Expenditures only, which may include acquisition of a new rectory at a later date. Such expenditures are subject to approval from the Executive Committee.

c) That the investment of any such Rectory Sale Funds be in accordance with the Diocese of Algoma Act, 1953.

d) That wherever possible a portion of the investment earnings, equal to the increase in the housing component of the consumer radix be capitalized on an annual basis.

e) i) That the parishes be allowed to regularly draw the remainder of such investment, if so desired, for the purpose of meeting the cost of housing, or paying a living allowance to the incumbent.

ii) In the case of an assisted parish the remainder of such investment earnings be drawn for the purpose of meeting the cost of housing or paying a living allowance to the incumbent.

iii) Where such income disbursements are proposed or requested for other purposes the approval of the Executive Committee will be required

(November 2013)

That an Unused Lands and Buildings Commission be established on the following terms:


a) To produce and maintain an inventory of property held by “The Incorporated Synod of the Diocese of Algoma” that is not being used, and is most unlikely to ever be used, for Church purposes.

b) To recommend the disposition of property and buildings on this inventory and to make the necessary arrangements for its sale or transfer by other means such as a transfer to the local municipalities or to volunteer heritage groups. The final decision on the sale or transfer of such property is to be made by the Bishop and the Officers of “The Incorporated Synod of the Diocese of Algoma” or a majority of the Officers if not all are available for consultation. These designated Officers of the Corporation are the Chancellor, the Registrar, the Executive Archdeacon, and the Treasurer.


The members of the Commission shall be the Dean (Chair), the Chancellor, and a person appointed by the Bishop. The members of the Commission may invite others to work in collaboration with them on various matters.


The expenses of this work will be paid through existing and future revenue from property sales. It will be self-funding.


The Commission will work in consultation with the Treasurer and will report to the Executive Committee through the Treasurer.


Two years at which time the Executive Committee will review the Commission’s (a) mandate, (b) performance, (c) membership and may then continue the Commission for a further period of time, make such modifications to the Commission as the Executive Committee considers appropriate, or dissolve the Commission.