Anglican Council of General Synod expresses concerns on medical assistance in dying

 — Mar. 13, 202413 mars 2024

The Anglican Church of Canada’s Council of General Synod (CoGS) has passed resolutions on the need for further discussion and education around medical assistance in dying (MAID), the formation of a discipleship and evangelism task force, and a review of the process by which ecclesiastical provinces elect CoGS representatives. General Synod last year referred all three resolutions to CoGS, which passed them at a March 9 online meeting held over Zoom.

Resolution C003, on MAID, reaffirmed “the teaching of Scripture that life is a divine gift, the call of the Baptismal Covenant to ‘respect the dignity of every human being,’ and the teaching of Jesus Christ that he has come so that people may have ‘abundant life’ (John 10:10).” It requested that Archbishop Linda Nicholls, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, write to Canada’s minister of health expressing concerns about the expansion of the MAID program as well as the church’s support for a robust palliative care system.

The resolution also directed Public Witness for Social and Ecological Justice and Faith, Worship and Ministry (FWM) to work together with CoGS members to find ways of educating the church on issues related to MAID—using existing resources produced by FWM and others, making them more widely available and encouraging their use in dioceses and parishes.

Bishop of Qu’Appelle Helen Kennedy moved Resolution C003, which CoGS passed unanimously. Kennedy said the resolution served as an update and opportunity to republicize new work the church had done on MAID. General Secretary Archdeacon Alan Perry referred specifically to a series of essays, Faith Seeking Understanding: Medical Assistance in Dying, recently published in print and digital formats. The primate said she would be happy to write to the minister of health “especially around the need for a robust palliative care system,” adding, “It’s hardly robust in some parts of the country.”

Posted: Mar. 13, 2024 • Permanent link:
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