“God keep our land Glorious and free,” It may not surprise you to see these words in our Sunday bulletin. The words “Glorious and freedom” are found in our national anthem. July 1 marks the anniversary of the formation of the union of the British North American provinces in a federation under the name of Canada; that’s the technical explanation according to Jane Mclean.
Over the years, the word “freedom” has become our national vocabulary when we celebrate Canada’s birthday. The most obvious meaning of freedom is the ability to do and say whatever we want, without interference from any authority or institution.
Our second lesson today tells us that, “For freedom Christ has set us free.” The freedom St. Paul writes about here is in contrast to the “yoke of slavery.” Sin is slavery because we lose our freedom to do good. In our sin, our failures crush us. The more laws we break, the more the law breaks us. We become discouraged with our lack of progress—our inability to be the kind of people we think we ought to be. In sin, we are locked into a yoke, unable to do anything but repeat the same cycle of failure, shame, trying harder, and more failure.
Tomorrow, we celebrate our freedom with parades and fireworks; we commemorate those who died in war with the phrase, “Freedom isn’t free,” and we uphold our freedom of speech vigorously. But, despite talking a lot about freedom, we are always reminded of God’s loving arms in our history. God continues to shape our future in ways that are expressive of our diversity, acceptance and inclusion.
Collect: Sovereign God, ruler of our hearts, you call us to obedience and sustain us in freedom. Keep us true to the way of your Son, that/so that we may leave behind all that hinders us and, with eyes fixed on him, walk surely in the path of the kingdom. Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever. Amen. (Opening Prayers: Collects in Contemporary Language 1997, 1999, 2001)
General Synod 2019: The 42nd General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada will be held from July 10-16, 2019 at the Sheraton Vancouver Wall Centre, Vancouver, British Columbia in the Diocese of New Westminster. The theme of the synod is “I Have Called You By Name” (Isaiah 43:1).
As a partner in the world wide Anglican Communion and in the universal Church, we proclaim and celebrate the gospel of Jesus Christ in worship and action. We value our heritage of biblical faith, reason, liturgy, tradition, bishops and synods, and the rich variety of our life in community. We acknowledge that God is calling us to greater diversity of membership, wider participation in ministry and leadership, better stewardship in God’s creation and a strong resolve in challenging attitudes and structures that cause injustice. Guided by the Holy Spirit, we commit ourselves to respond to this call in love and service and so more fully live the life of Christ.
Vision 2019: Summary – Practices for the Church Ready for God’s Mission
To enable the church’s mission, the church nationally will
- Create structures that work for the church now and for God’s mission The Council of General Synod will renew the mandate of the Governance Working Group to study and recommend appropriate changes in the organizational life of the General Synod in light of Vision 2019. (From:gs2019.anglican.ca)